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Forums - Gaming Discussion - Opinion: Microsoft's acquisition of Bethesda and Activision do not benefit Xbox owners.

having the same gameplay in a different coat of paint and calling it a new IP is frankly the smartest PR move ever



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I agree that MS acquisition of Bethesda and Acti/Bliz does not benefit Xbox users but would expand on that concept. Instead I believe its very limited to believe that MS purchasing publishers like Bethesda and Acti/Blizz is just for the benefit of Xbox console users.

I remember a time when people thought that MS was going to either spin off the Xbox division or move from gaming especially after they pretty much closed all their PC studios. Next thing you know, they put Phil in charge and MS direction totally changed. They come up with Gamepass and now they switch gears and purchasing studios and publishers.

MS has wanted to enter the entertainment space for a while and the Xbox was the device to do it but it alone is not enough. MS has looked at subscription services which as a company they have moved into that space with Azure, 365 and their other products. Now they have a service for entertainment which is GP and the reason I say entertainment is that GP will expand beyond games. Basically I see GP becoming MS Amazon prime which will offer all sorts of entertainment services for a sub price. Another big purchase which is pure speculation on my part would be something like Netflix. Now you offer that service along with GP and you could have a pretty solid entertainment service for consumers dollars.

So I believe MS purchasing publishers is not something that is geared to benefit xbox users but the company as a whole. MS target isn't just Xbox users but users of entertainment and their goal is much bigger than the amount of users they can gain on the Xbox brand alone.



Runa216 said:

chakkra said:

And here I was thinking that Microsoft funded and published Sea of Thieves, Grounded, Ori, As Dusk Falls, Tell me Why, Ryse, Quantum Break, ReCore, and Sunset Overdrive; and it will soon publish Pentiment, Everwild, Contraband and Avowed. Silly me, seeing these investments the only logical conclusion is that Microsoft is not interested in new IPs.

And I can totally see your concerns about creativity, I mean, look at how similar Pentiment, As Dusk Falls, Gear Tactics and Sea of Thieves all look and play. They are certainly lacking that "3rd Person Action Adventure" flavor that is so synonym of creativity and innovation these days.

Oh, and I'm still trying to figure out how Spiderman is more of a "new IP" than Indiana Jones.

This is not the compliment you think it is. 

Sony funded The Last of Us, Ghost of Tsushima, Horizon, Bloodborne, Days Gone, and even released the new Spider-Man and God of War games. Nintendo made Pikmin and Splatoon and ARMs. Microsoft hasn't been making new IP at the same level as Sony and Nintendo. 

And as a Sony fan I actually think that Activision being bought by Microsoft is good, actually. As of right now Xbox as a console/brand has no real strong identity aside from the triforce of IP that Microsoft has relied on since 2001 (Halo, Gears, Forza). Their console doesn't have many games to call its own, it has no specific controller functions or gimmicks like VR or portability. It's just a strong console with gamepass. It needs more exclusive games and it needs to have its identity. And that identity is 'Murica. IT's a very western/American centric brand, specializing in shit that's popular in america. You don't see shit like Gravity Rush on there, and a lot of Japanese/International devs put their games on PS/Switch but not Xbox becuase those games just don't sell well on Xbox. 

So, if they have no identity, they need to double down on what they do well. Western games. Shooters and western RPGs, Racing games and other HOO-RAH games like Call of Duty. They need their identity as the best place to play futbol or shoot foreigners. You know, AMERICAN SHIT. 

This sounds like satire, like it's an underhanded compliment, but I actually do mean it. If Xbox can't do international games, has almost no presence in Japan or among gamers who like Japanese games, has no VR, and lacks that versatility of portability like the Switch, it needs something to call its own. ESPECIALLY since all the exclusives it does have are on PC as well. So why not double down on what they do best? 

HAving Call of Duty (Because let's be honest that's like 95% of why people care) exclusive to Xbox strengthens that identity and gives them a better ability to carve out a piece of the pie. Nintendo has families and the Japanese market, Sony has VR and a very balanced worldwide audience, and Xbox can have the college frat boys! 

Maybe you should take a look at what their newly acquired studios are working on because almost half are new IPs. I'm not saying they don't have work to do, but they are clearly putting in an effort. 

Game Pass is a big identity for Xbox since you are just going to skim over it like its some niche service. Xcloud covers portability and works great on many devices. Quick resume is a great feature for their console experience and something I use everytime I turn on my console. Xbox has easily been the best when it comes to backwards compatibility.  You are so focused on only the console experience and ignoring everything else Xbox is doing in the gaming space. 



Barozi said:
ConservagameR said:

The point is someone else owned it before MS and apparently they didn't want their games on Game Pass.

If Game Pass was looking to be so profitable, why wouldn't Activision Blizzard have wanted to put their games on there before?

Which all plays into the question of who is this helping if it always would've been so beneficial to have those franchises on Game Pass?

That's like asking why X is not on Netflix and Y isn't on Disney+. There can be many reasons.

1. MS and Activision are competitors, even when Activision makes games for the Xbox platform. Their games are competing for the same userbase as MS' own developed games.

2. Maybe Activision planned to create its own subscription service in the future much like EA and Ubisoft did. Having their games on a rival's subscription service would diminsh the value of their own service. There aren't any EA games on Game Pass either. However, EA partnered with MS to get their subscription service on Game Pass, making it only available to GP Ultimate members.

3. They think they make more money with game sales than from microtransactions and DLCs from Game Pass users.

4. They just didn't like the offer MS made.

5. MS never made an offer since their GP budget was already spent elsewhere and they knew they weren't getting CoD for a few million dollars.

What about everyone else who's put their games on Game Pass, plus the other services that tie in or bundle with Game Pass as you said?

So the long and short of what you're saying is AB didn't want their franchises on Game Pass because it wasn't worth it?

What's that tell you about what they thought of Game Pass?

The simplest answer is they didn't think Game Pass was worth it for their franchises.

It took MS $70 billion to make it worth it, by force.

If AB couldn't see the future profits and payback from the so far existing and upcoming Game Pass subscribers, how is MS gunna do it without either jacking up the price, going far beyond XB owners, or by taking forever to pay it off? Which then begs the question, how beneficial is it really for XB owners?



ConservagameR said:

What about everyone else who's put their games on Game Pass, plus the other services that tie in or bundle with Game Pass as you said?

So the long and short of what you're saying is AB didn't want their franchises on Game Pass because it wasn't worth it?

What's that tell you about what they thought of Game Pass?

The simplest answer is they didn't think Game Pass was worth it for their franchises.

It took MS $70 billion to make it worth it, by force.

If AB couldn't see the future profits and payback from the so far existing and upcoming Game Pass subscribers, how is MS gunna do it without either jacking up the price, going far beyond XB owners, or by taking forever to pay it off? Which then begs the question, how beneficial is it really for XB owners?

I can't speak for Game Pass.  I'm just glad I don't have to lose out on any of the cool games.



...to avoid getting banned for inactivity, I may have to resort to comments that are of a lower overall quality and or beneath my moral standards.

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DroidKnight said:
ConservagameR said:

What about everyone else who's put their games on Game Pass, plus the other services that tie in or bundle with Game Pass as you said?

So the long and short of what you're saying is AB didn't want their franchises on Game Pass because it wasn't worth it?

What's that tell you about what they thought of Game Pass?

The simplest answer is they didn't think Game Pass was worth it for their franchises.

It took MS $70 billion to make it worth it, by force.

If AB couldn't see the future profits and payback from the so far existing and upcoming Game Pass subscribers, how is MS gunna do it without either jacking up the price, going far beyond XB owners, or by taking forever to pay it off? Which then begs the question, how beneficial is it really for XB owners?

I can't speak for Game Pass.  I'm just glad I don't have to lose out on any of the cool games.

Will they remain cool games if Game Pass doesn't take off and make back the $70 billion quickly, along with enough profits to keep the beast fed?



ConservagameR said:
DroidKnight said:

I can't speak for Game Pass.  I'm just glad I don't have to lose out on any of the cool games.

Will they remain cool games if Game Pass doesn't take off and make back the $70 billion quickly, along with enough profits to keep the beast fed?

MS is paying for this acquisition so they will have made the money they spent on the acquisition by the time it goes through. They would also rather invest in something than let the money sit and do nothing. Why does Game Pass need to make the money back quickly? They are clearly playing the long game. It could take 15+ years and they are likely cool with it. 

Last edited by smroadkill15 - 2 days ago

ConservagameR said:
DroidKnight said:

I can't speak for Game Pass.  I'm just glad I don't have to lose out on any of the cool games.

Will they remain cool games if Game Pass doesn't take off and make back the $70 billion quickly, along with enough profits to keep the beast fed?

Honestly, I really don't see how Gamepass couldn't take off with the full might of the soon to be 34 Xbox 1st party studios (and I believe over 50 individual teams within those 34 studios) releasing games onto Gamepass day one. There should be a steady stream of 1st party content flowing into Gamepass once Xbox gets their 1st party machine properly started up. Then you've got the fact that Xbox makes quite a few 2nd party exclusive deals, plus quite a few 3rd party day one Gamepass deals as well. Starfield in 2023 and the first CoD allowed by contract to be day one Gamepass (2025 or 2026) in particular should be huge Gamepass subscription drivers. 



smroadkill15 said:
ConservagameR said:

Will they remain cool games if Game Pass doesn't take off and make back the $70 billion quickly, along with enough profits to keep the beast fed?

MS is paying for this acquisition so they will have made the money they spent on the acquisition by the time it goes through. They would also rather invest in something than let the money sit and do nothing. Why does Game Pass need to make the money back quickly? They are clearly playing the long game. It could take 15+ years and they are likely cool with it. 

MS had that $70 billion cash in their pockets, so no, they didn't need to make that money to make the purchase.

Unless XB exists just to be a subsidy for MS, making money back slowly is bad business for someone in MS's position.

If MS were fine with outrageous XB subsidies and didn't care how long the payback took, why have they waited 20 years to go big now?

Simplest answer to me is that they aren't planning on taking forever to pay it off. How that plays out will be the interesting part for XB owners.

shikamaru317 said:
ConservagameR said:

Will they remain cool games if Game Pass doesn't take off and make back the $70 billion quickly, along with enough profits to keep the beast fed?

Honestly, I really don't see how Gamepass couldn't take off with the full might of the soon to be 34 Xbox 1st party studios (and I believe over 50 individual teams within those 34 studios) releasing games onto Gamepass day one. There should be a steady stream of 1st party content flowing into Gamepass once Xbox gets their 1st party machine properly started up. Then you've got the fact that Xbox makes quite a few 2nd party exclusive deals, plus quite a few 3rd party day one Gamepass deals as well. Starfield in 2023 and the first CoD allowed by contract to be day one Gamepass (2025 or 2026) in particular should be huge Gamepass subscription drivers. 

I don't think many saw the XB Series S coming, the console shortages, the much more positive MS PR and more negative Sony PR, etc.

There's so many variables that assuming it's just going to succeed because it's MS or a Netflix like product, isn't looking broad enough. That's not saying Game Pass can't succeed, because it could, but it's sure taking it's sweet time to get there. If AB doesn't increase the momentum considerably, then MS has their work cut out for them, and then some.



ConservagameR said:
smroadkill15 said:

MS is paying for this acquisition so they will have made the money they spent on the acquisition by the time it goes through. They would also rather invest in something than let the money sit and do nothing. Why does Game Pass need to make the money back quickly? They are clearly playing the long game. It could take 15+ years and they are likely cool with it. 

MS had that $70 billion cash in their pockets, so no, they didn't need to make that money to make the purchase.

Unless XB exists just to be a subsidy for MS, making money back slowly is bad business for someone in MS's position.

If MS were fine with outrageous XB subsidies and didn't care how long the payback took, why have they waited 20 years to go big now?

Simplest answer to me is that they aren't planning on taking forever to pay it off. How that plays out will be the interesting part for XB owners.

Its called new management.  New CEO, new head of xbox, new direction for MS as a company with subscription services. MS as a business has changed in those 20 years.  Yes, GP is not a plan for making huge money today as MS has been careful to taking their time building the infrastructure to support it from spending billions on server farms and their cloud infrastructure all over the world to adding pieces to GP as the system continue to grow and building their first party content.  A company as large as MS does not have to make back a purchase right away.  I have worked for multiple companies who has either purchase or been purchase by another company and no it's not always about making your money back its about market position and expanding the capability of your company in a competitive environment.  MS purchasing publishers are not about making back their purchase in cash, it's about growth of their entertainment division and that is currently the position they are in a growth cycle for entertainment.

The paying it off is the simplest part of this whole story, since both publishers are all in the green.  It's not like they are purchasing companies in the red who products do not sell.  The larger scope is they expect more subs. More subs then just a console lifecycle can bring but global subs that allows gamers on whatever platform they chose play MS games.  PC, console, mobile, TV, Dongle you name it and MS wants to be there.  It's a pretty simple strategy that does not need a lot of thought, but it does need a lot of money and time building and setting all the blocks in place to achieve.