Zenimax Acquisition: Grandiose for the Gaming Community


Xbox Game Pass has been nothing but a lucrative deal for Microsoft and an amazing bargain for Xbox and PC players. There is just one slight problem with it — it’s too unstable. Random games arrive and leave at the end of each month, making the deal seem less appealing as you never know when your favorite game in Xbox Game Pass may be removed. However, Microsoft’s acquisition of Zenimax Media for 7.5 billion dollars in late September has temporarily put those concerns to rest.

What is Zenimax Media and why is this acquisition so important for gaming? Well, Zenimax Media is the parent company for Bethesda Softworks, who have been responsible for famous games such as the Fallout series and The Elder Scrolls V:Skyrim, which is the 19th top selling game of ALL time with 30 million copies sold. The deal also applies to all other studios operating within Bethesda Softworks and their subsequent intellectual property, such as Arkane Studios (Dishonored, Prey(2017), and Deathloop); id Software (Quake, DOOM, and RAGE); Machine Games (Wolfenstein); and many others. As a result, Microsoft’s first party studios have increased from 15 to 18, and they have added an additional 2,300 employees to the company. Not only does this mean that Microsoft gets a portion of all profits from these beloved games, but they also have complete control of the creative direction of a game and what platform it ultimately ends up on. 

The acquisition has frightened many people, as Microsoft may lock their favorite franchises by making them exclusive to the Xbox platform. This fear is especially heightened for Playstation players as two of their exclusives, Deathloop and GhostWire: Tokyo, are now officially owned by Microsoft and Xbox Game Studios by proxy. Thankfully, Microsoft has said that they won’t be making any of these games exclusive and will respect the exclusivity deal with Sony. 

While this move may be strange at first because Microsoft won’t move as many consoles as they could have, this will lead to much greater profit in the long run. Even though consoles are expensive, they are still sold at a loss and the profit is made through other areas such as digital game sales. By making these games available for every platform, Microsoft is able to generate revenue from Playstation, and PC players which have a much larger player base. This is a huge slap to the face to Sony since two exclusive titles will now generate greater revenue for Microsoft and will bear either the Microsoft or Xbox Game Studios logo. 

Microsoft also plans to include all future and some past games from Zenimax Media into Xbox Game Pass for PC and Xbox players, making the subscription a much better quality buy. With the pass, you get day one access to all of these new and old games, and now that they are owned by Microsoft, you never have to worry about losing them over time. Although 7.5 billion dollars may be a relatively small number for Microsoft, the effects of this deal will be nothing short of grandiose for the gaming community and Microsoft’s bottom line.