Microsoft has final­ly bought Zen­i­Max for a whop­ping $7.5 bil­lion, fol­low­ing approval from reg­u­la­tors in the US and Europe. In Microsoft­’s announce­ment were some details on what the acqui­si­tion means for the future of Bethes­da’s games. It’s offi­cial, some titles will be exclu­sive to Xbox and PC

Phil Spencer, Xbox boss, made it clear that Microsoft is work­ing with Xbox, PC, and Game Pass being the “best place” to play Bethes­da’s new games. It real­ly isn’t a sur­prise that Microsoft would give pref­er­en­tial treat­ment to its own plat­forms. How­ev­er, he also stat­ed that “some new titles in the future” from Bethes­da will be exclu­sive to Xbox and PC.

Of course, there are still so many ques­tions that are yet to be answered. Games like Deathloop, which already had deals in place before the acqui­si­tion, will still hon­or their agree­ments. But future games like Elder Scrolls VI, Starfield, and oth­ers, ques­tions remain.

Spencer’s state­ment did­n’t include any details on spe­cif­ic games that may be exclu­sive to Xbox and PC in the future. It also was­n’t men­tioned if “exclu­sive” means timed-exclu­sive or full-exclu­sive. Either way, this was one of the largest acqui­si­tions in gam­ing his­to­ry, so it’s unlike­ly that Microsoft will play nice­ly with it competitors.

Although Spencer often talks about the futil­i­ty of con­sole wars, don’t take that as him being soft. He wants Xbox to out­per­form PlaySta­tion and Nin­ten­do, and pur­chas­ing Zen­i­Max is a step towards accom­plish­ing that.

One major sell­ing point Microsoft has over any of its com­pe­ti­tion is Game Pass. Microsoft could release games like Starfield and Elder Scrolls VI on Game Pass, but still release these games for PlaySta­tion at full price. The val­ue is obvi­ous, since the price of a game is only increasing. 

Anoth­er fac­tor to con­sid­er is that Bethes­da Game Stu­dios has been lean­ing more towards Xbox for some time already. The Elder Scrolls III: Mor­rowind was exclu­sive to Xbox and PC, while The Elder Scrolls IV: Obliv­ion launched as a timed-exclu­sive on Xbox 360. Recent­ly, Fall­out 76 had sev­er­al exclu­sive arrange­ments with Xbox, includ­ing a spe­cial edi­tion con­sole. One must also con­sid­er reports from play­ers that sev­er­al Bethes­da-devel­oped titles in the Fall­out and Elder Scrolls series have per­formed poor­ly on PlaySta­tion in com­par­i­son to Xbox.