Well, if this doesn’t spice up the console war over next-gen, I don’t know what will. Microsoft have today announced that they are acquiring Zenimax, parent company of Bethesda, for a cool $7.5 billion – this means that Microsoft will own the The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, DOOM, and Wolfenstein franchises, just to name a few.

Oh, and timed PlayStation 5 exclusives Deathloop and GhostWire: Tokyo? They’re technically going to be published by Microsoft now… it will be interesting to see if anything changes there.

Bethesda

The follow details were revealed in a press e-mail:

Microsoft today announced plans to acquire ZeniMax Media, the parent company of Bethesda Softworks, one of the largest, privately held game developers and publishers in the world. Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will acquire ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion in cash.

– Creators of critically acclaimed and best-selling gaming franchises including The Elder Scrolls and Fallout among many others, Bethesda brings an impressive portfolio of games, technology, talent, as well as a track record of blockbuster commercial success, to Xbox.

– The cultural phenomenon of gaming has made it the largest and fastest-growing form of entertainment in the world—an industry that is expected to be more than $200 billion in annual revenue in 2021.

– Games are the primary growth engine in gaming and games are fueling new cloud-gaming services like Xbox Game Pass, which has reached a new milestone of over 15 million subscribers.

– With the addition of Bethesda, Microsoft will grow from 15 to 23 creative studio teams and will be adding Bethesda’s iconic franchises to Xbox Game Pass. This includes Microsoft’s intent to bring Bethesda’s future games into Xbox Game Pass the same day they launch on Xbox or PC.

– With unique investments in content, community, and the cloud, Microsoft’s gaming strategy differs from others by empowering people to play the games they want, with the people they want, anywhere they want.

No details have been revealed about console exclusivity yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we only see the likes of The Elder Scrolls, DOOM, and Starfield on the Xbox platform in the future. You can check out a blog post by Xbox boss Phil Spencer about the acquisition here.