Microsoft wants future Bethesda games to be “first or best” on Xbox, says the CFO

A senior executive said Microsoft wants future Bethesda games to be “either first, best, or best” on Xbox platforms.

Speaking at Jefferies Interactive Entertainment last week, Xbox CFO Tim Stewart discussed how Microsoft intends to handle the release of Bethesda Softworks games once the publisher of Elder Scrolls, Fallout and Doom becomes a first-party company.

Microsoft announced in September that it intended to acquire ZeniMax Media and game publisher Bethesda Softworks for $ 7.5 billion, with the deal expected to be completed in early 2021.

“What we’re going to do in the long run is that we have no intentions to pull all of Bethesda’s content from Sony, Nintendo, or otherwise,” said Stewart (copied by searching for Alpha).

“But what we want is that we want this content to be, in the long run, either the first, the best, the best, or we choose your unique experience on our platforms. We want Bethesda content to appear in the best way – on our platforms.

“Yes. That’s no point in being exclusive. That’s not a point about us – adjusting the timing, content, or roadmap. But if you think of something like Game Pass, if it appears better in Game Pass, that’s what we want to see, and we want to direct a rule. Game Pass subscribers via this Bethesda pipeline.

“Once again, I am not announcing that content has been withdrawn from the platforms in one way or the other,” Stewart continued. “But I suspect you will continue to see us shift towards the first, better, or better approach on our platforms.”

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Microsoft’s acquisition of ZeniMax Media will grow Xbox Game Studios from 15 to 23 development teams.

Bethesda Softworks Studios has around 2,300 employees worldwide, including Bethesda Game Studios (Fallout and Elder Scrolls), id Software (Doom), ZeniMax Online Studios (Elder Scrolls Online), Arkane (Dishonored and Prey), MachineGames (Wolfenstein) and Tango Gameworks (The Evil Within), Alpha Dog, and Roundhouse Studios.

After the ZeniMax deal was announced, Xbox chief Phil Spencer said Microsoft will honor the existing PS5 exclusive agreements Bethesda has struck for games like Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo.

For future Bethesda games, Spencer said, “We will take the other consoles on a case-by-case basis.”

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella echoed Spencer’s comments: “When we think about strategy, be it in games or any other part of Microsoft, every layer has to stand alone in terms of what it brings. When we talk about our content, we want the private content to be. Us is widely available. “

Xbox’s Stuart told Jefferies Interactive Entertainment that Microsoft expects the Xbox Series X / S supply shortages to continue until April 2021, and that it will announce first-party pricing for Xbox Series X / S software “in a timely fashion.”