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Microsoft purchases Bethesda parent company ZeniMax Media; future Elder Scrolls, Fallout games may be Xbox exclusives

Bethesda and its brother studios like id Software are now owned by Xbox and Microsoft. (Image via Xbox)
Bethesda and its brother studios like id Software are now owned by Xbox and Microsoft. (Image via Xbox)
Microsoft has purchased ZeniMax Media for US$7.5 billion, bringing popular game development studios like Bethesda and id Software under the Xbox umbrella. This may mark the beginning of Xbox exclusivity for series like The Elder Scrolls, DOOM, Fallout, and more.

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Bethesda is currently known for its expansive RPG worlds and high-paced action shooters, but it may soon be known as an Xbox-exclusive developer.

Phil Spencer, the head of Microsoft’s Xbox division, confirmed Microsoft’s purchase of Zenimax Media, the parent company of developers like Bethesda Game Studios and id Software, earlier today. The US$7.5 billion acquisition makes these game studios and more part of Xbox’s network of developers. This deal is one of the biggest studio purchases in the video games industry to date.

Aside from the financial aspect, many gamers are curious as to what the shift in ownership will do for future titles under popular franchises like The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, and DOOM. Since Bethesda, id, and the like are now officially under the Xbox umbrella, there is a good chance future installments in these series will be Xbox exclusives. Spencer hinted as much in a press release announcing the deal, stating that “Xbox consoles, PC, and Game Pass will be the best place to experience new Bethesda games, including some new titles in the future that will be exclusive to Xbox and PC players.”

That may mean Sony-centric gamers will be left in the lurch with the Elder Scrolls 6, Fallout 5, and/or the next DOOM game. If Microsoft forces ZeniMax’s game studios into Xbox exclusivity, then those games may never come to the PlayStation 5. Other possibilities include delayed releases on Sony’s and Nintendo’s consoles to bolster sales on the Xbox.

For Xbox Game Pass subscribers, the acquisition is good news. Spencer announced that Xbox will be bringing additional Bethesda games to the service later this week, though the exact titles have yet to be revealed.

If you are a fan of Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, DOOM, Wolfenstein, Dishonored, The Evil Within, Starfield, or other games under ZeniMax, you now have a good reason to buy an Xbox Series X or Xbox Game Pass subscription.

What do you think of Microsoft’s purchase of ZeniMax media and its associated game development studios? Let us know in the comments.

Buy an Xbox Series S at Amazon.

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Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Senior Tech Writer - 1129 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2016
I've been a computer geek my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a database administrator. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news and reviews. I've also written for other outlets including UltrabookReview and GeeksWorldWide, focusing on consumer guidance and video gaming. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not writing on electronics or tinkering with a device, I'm either outside with my family, enjoying a decade-old video game, or playing drums or piano.
contact me via: @samuel_medley
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 03 > Microsoft purchases Bethesda parent company ZeniMax Media; future Elder Scrolls, Fallout games may be Xbox exclusives
Sam Medley, 2021-03- 9 (Update: 2021-03-10)