Monday, September 21st 2020

Microsoft Announces Acquisition of Bethesda Parent Company ZeniMax Media

Microsoft today dropped a giant bomb on the balance of game development: the company announced the acquisition of ZeniMax Media, parent company of Bethesda Softworks, and all its related IP. The purchase, which is expected to close for a tidy $7.5 billion, will carry over all ZeniMax Media subsidiaries. This includes Bethesda (The Elder Scrolls, Fallout), id Software (DOOM), Arkane Studios (Prey, Dishonored, upcoming Deathloop), MachineGames (Wolfenstein), among others.

The deal is the costliest acquisition for Microsoft (to date) in its push to increase the number of in-house development studios (up to 23 from 15 prior to this deal). Microsoft has announced that as part of the deal, games published by ZeniMax Media and subsidiaries (and in the future, by Microsoft) will be available on its Xbox Games Pass subscription service for Xbox and PC gaming. Microsoft is acquiring some of the most iconic gaming franchises ever with this deal, including all in-development IP. It's a huge boon for the company; it remains to be seen exactly how will this evolve over the years. But one thing is for certain: Microsoft isn't slowing down on its doubling down on game development.
Microsoft expects the deal to close in the second half of its fiscal year 2021, which ends June 30, and to have "minimal" impact on its adjusted operating income for the current and next fiscal years. There are expected to be no shakeups in company leadership from this transition.
Source: Microsoft
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93 Comments on Microsoft Announces Acquisition of Bethesda Parent Company ZeniMax Media

#1
deu
Guess Motorcross Madness wasnt enough gamedevelopement for Microsoft... The way bethesda was going the last 1-2 year this might be a good thing. It shows serious intent. Alot of xbox exclusives inc! I hope MS will give bethesda space to be old bethesda :0
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#2
zlobby
M$ need to just fix what's wrong with Bethesda. Basically everything.
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#4
TheOne
Maybe now Obsidian can make a sequel to Fallout New Vegas.
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#5
birdie
A large number of games developed under the Bethesda umbrella are using Vulkan which is portable.

I hope Microsoft won't make them switch to DirectX12 which will make things worse for the consumer.

I also hope they will rework/rewrite the Bethesda launcher because it just sucks. It doesn't suck as much as the Epic Games Launcher, which is just atrocious, but it's nowhere near Steam in terms of performance.
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#6
TheDeeGee
Different name, same developers.

They should fire all developers atleast, they have no clue how to work with the creation engine, this has been proven since Skyrim.

Hire the modding community who manages to fix all the bugs.
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#7
BigBonedCartman
Fingers crossed the Fallout series will no longer show up as a day 1 stillbirth launch
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#8
Assimilator
Holy hell, I don't think anyone saw this coming.

Let's hope that this will ensure the next Fallout or Elder Scrolls game isn't a janky cash-grab.
TheDeeGee
Different name, same developers.

They should fire all developers atleast, they have no clue how to work with the creation engine, this has been proven since Skyrim.

Hire the modding community who manages to fix all the bugs.
Creation Engine should be thrown in a pit, and that pit should have a couple dozen Fallout nukes lobbed into it. That janky POS lived far longer than it should, they should've rewritten it for Fallout 4 already but Todd Howard likes money too much.
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#9
Ravenas
Assimilator
Holy hell, I don't think anyone saw this coming.

Let's hope that this will ensure the next Fallout or Elder Scrolls game isn't a janky cash-grab.



Creation Engine should be thrown in a pit, and that pit should have a couple dozen Fallout nukes lobbed into it. That janky POS lived far longer than it should, they should've rewritten it for Fallout 4 already but Todd Howard likes money too much.
Bethesda / Zinimax need capital. Microsoft provides that capital.
Microsoft needs first party games to bolster their games via subscription service that they and others, i.e., Apple are pushing.
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#10
chstamos
Bethesda launcher may be the only game launcher that would be actually be UPGRADED by a complete switch to the friggin Windows Store. And that's saying something.
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#11
iO
Ha, M$ now has PS5 exclusives with Deathloop and Ghostwire Tokyo...
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#12
BArms
Assimilator
Holy hell, I don't think anyone saw this coming.

Let's hope that this will ensure the next Fallout or Elder Scrolls game isn't a janky cash-grab.



Creation Engine should be thrown in a pit, and that pit should have a couple dozen Fallout nukes lobbed into it. That janky POS lived far longer than it should, they should've rewritten it for Fallout 4 already but Todd Howard likes money too much.
Creation engine is awesome. Except the crash, alt tab, and fps limit weirdness bugs and the plastic NPC movement, but all of these they can fix/change without a complete overhaul. It's not cutting edge, but Skyrim looked amazing in it's time and FO4 wasn't bad either.
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#13
broketm
TheDeeGee
Different name, same developers.

They should fire all developers atleast, they have no clue how to work with the creation engine, this has been proven since Skyrim.

Hire the modding community who manages to fix all the bugs.
What an insane notion, Bethesda Games need to fix their crappy engine, hire devs who can do that. The devs who work there have been working with the same tools for decades, you'd throw away all that experience and expect better results with the same engine?

It aren't the devs at fault, it's the publishers and management who allow such buggy products to roll out. If anything Microsoft should force better quality control upon the Bethesda Games studio.

No engine cannot be refactored in such a way that it's both more modern and stable, and still provides the tools which the devs have spend years learning to master.
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#14
BArms
Ravenas
Bethesda / Zinimax need capital. Microsoft provides that capital.
Microsoft needs first party games to bolster their games via subscription service that they and others, i.e., Apple are pushing.
Zenimax is filthy stinking rich. They made Skyrim with less than half their current income/cash. This is nothing more than some stock holders cashing out. RIP Bethesda Softworks.
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#15
theoneandonlymrk
iO
Ha, M$ now has PS5 exclusives with Deathloop and Ghostwire Tokyo...
That's the first thing I thought, Sony will surely have those legally tied up with regards exclusive release use, wouldn't they?.

So is this the rumoured BIG bucks Microsoft were spending on something secret?.
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#16
Bubster
Fallout wasn't a cool game ...more like a cheap rip off of Far cry open world adventure
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#17
Chrispy_
Good? Good I think.

Microsoft are far from the best people to take over zenimax, but Facebook were predictably awful and it's hard to imagine Microsoft being worse.

It puts Sony in a bind though.
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#18
Ravenas
BArms
Zenimax is filthy stinking rich. They made Skyrim with less than half their current income/cash. This is nothing more than some stock holders cashing out. RIP Bethesda Softworks.
The hammers and sickles of anticapitalism are fiercely at work here with you...

Anytime one company is bought / sold, that makes the company horrible going forward by your thoughts?
  1. So, I guess when Zenimax purchased id, id was no longer good anymore? A bunch of legacy IPs that weren't getting funded, turned in to full-fledged modern-day triple A titles.
  2. The Bethesda digital store is so well operational because they are "filthy stinking rich".
  3. The Fallout franchise was steaming along so well with Interplay.
The list could go on... Sure, the shareholders made money on their sell. Do you think they would want to devalue the sell? Companies are bought and sold constantly in the United States. Somehow the wine reviewer video game consumers hold the purchases to some anti gaming sentiment.
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#19
FreedomEclipse
~Technological Technocrat~
Bubster
Fallout wasn't a cool game ...more like a cheap rip off of Far cry open world adventure
You do know that that ELDER SCROLLS which Fallout was cut and pasted (and born) from existed before Far Cry right??? You got it the other way round friend.
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#20
Ravenas
FreedomEclipse
You do know that that ELDER SCROLLS which Fallout was cut and pasted (and born) from existed before Far Cry right??? You got it the other way round friend.
You do know that Fallout 1, 2, and Tactics was the acual born from game, correct?
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#21
neatfeatguy
birdie
A large number of games developed under the Bethesda umbrella are using Vulkan which is portable.

I hope Microsoft won't make them switch to DirectX12 which will make things worse for the consumer.

I also hope they will rework/rewrite the Bethesda launcher because it just sucks. It doesn't suck as much as the Epic Games Launcher, which is just atrocious, but it's nowhere near Steam in terms of performance.
They'll probably just all out drop the Bethesda launcher and shift everything to the Microsoft Store.

Hoepfully Microsoft can find a way to breath new life into The Elder Scrolls and Fallout series since the last few entries have been rather lackluster.....might as well throw Wolfenstein in there as well.
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#22
Bubster
neatfeatguy
They'll probably just all out drop the Bethesda launcher and shift everything to the Microsoft Store.

Hoepfully Microsoft can find a way to breath new life into The Elder Scrolls and Fallout series since the last few entries have been rather lackluster.....might as well throw Wolfenstein in there as well.
Forget about fallout and microsoft...let's talk about more important thing....That is such a cute Bunny
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#23
kiriakost
The Elder Scrolls ... the crap of all times that Bethesda asked apologies from all it customers including me, that game level-up was poorly designed and a painful experience.
This got sold ?
Microsoft you just lost your money.
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#25
dragontamer5788
kiriakost
The Elder Scrolls ... the crap of all times that Bethesda asked apologies from all it customers including me, that game level-up was poorly designed and a painful experience.
This got sold ?
Microsoft you just lost your money.
I think you're underestimating the size of this company.

Zenimax Media owns not only Bethesda (Elder Scrolls, Fallout), but also id Software (Wolfenstein, Doom, Quake). Almost the entirety of their list of published games comes from companies that Zenimax Media owns. (ex: Machine Games is a studio under Zenimax Media)
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