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Opinion Business Platform Xbox CFO Talks Bethesda Exclusivity; “We Want Bethesda Content to be First or Better or Best on Xbox Platforms”

Warablo

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Not keeping Bethesda titles off of PC is going to cost them console sales and won't help justify the cost of buying them.
They don't care about that. They hardly care about making games either as you can see from last gen (very expensive, high risk, low reward, difficult)

Its all about Game Pass now.

About the thread.

They didn't buy Zenimax to continue the business status quo exactly the same and release on all platforms.
Unless the only reason Microsoft bought them is to keep them away from Amazon.
We gotta wait until the deal goes through and Starfield gets shown. Of course the current IP's that are on the systems will stay, but future games will be exclusive.
 
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Megatron

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Wait, I was assured that this could not happen on this very forum. They said it would never happen.

I said, well, it could make alot of business sense for some sort of timed-exclusive or other type arrangment. I was told, no, never going to happen.

Yup.
I mean, nothing has happened yet. It’s just people trying to interpret vague corporate speak. Safest bet is to assume Bethesda games won’t be on Playstation.
 
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The Alien

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If Sony and Nintendo want the games, they'll have to allow some version of GamePass.

Otherwise, MS will count their cash from PC, XCloud, and XBox console subscribers/sales.

The MMO/GAAS stuff like ESO and F76 will remain multiplat.
 

HarryKS

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If Sony and Nintendo want the games, they'll have to allow some version of GamePass.

Otherwise, MS will count their cash from PC, XCloud, and XBox console subscribers/sales.

The MMO/GAAS stuff like ESO and F76 will remain multiplat.
Why would they have to ask for Game pass. They'd be getting 70 bucks per game....
 

ExKing

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I expect some Bethesda games going multiplatform, but only the Games as a Service ones. So maybe that's what is in question here.
 

GenericUser

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please excuse my bad english
I think that is what everyone expected, right? You don't spend 7 billion and make the games NOT exclusive. Not a huge deal for me. I'll buy a used/cheap xbox series s when elder scrolls 6 arrives, 5 or 6 years from now. Or, if it's coming to PC at the same time, just buy it there.
 

Megatron

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I think that is what everyone expected, right? You don't spend 7 billion and make the games NOT exclusive. Not a huge deal for me. I'll buy a used/cheap xbox series s when elder scrolls 6 arrives, 5 or 6 years from now. Or, if it's coming to PC at the same time, just buy it there.
Most people think they will be on XBox and PC and that’s it. So not exclusive, but not on Playstation either.
 

Damigos

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The only viable solution i see according to their parameters is this :

1st, timed exclusivity on GP
2nd, DONT take advantage of unique PS5 or Switch features (like DualSense).

I think everything else will backlash on them, like for example is they make inferior versions on other platforms
 
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By the way, does anyone know what the deal was with Cuphead? That went from being a Microsoft exclusive, to appearing on Switch, and then arriving on PS4, now no longer being published by Microsoft Studios.


Microsoft doesn't own Cuphead or the studio that made it. They had a publishing deal.
 

MiyazakiHatesKojima

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By the way, does anyone know what the deal was with Cuphead? That went from being a Microsoft exclusive, to appearing on Switch, and then arriving on PS4, now no longer being published by Microsoft Studios.

Microsoft and Xbox have different views about exclusive games and their potential revenues as non-exclusive games.

In other words, the only reason why Cuphead was released on the Switch and PS4 as because the install base for those two platforms far exceed Xbox's install base. So why prevent Microsoft from earning potential revenue when they can just make those "exclusives" into timed-exclusives.

I'm predicting Starfield to release on the PS5 a year or two after it's release on the Xbox and same goes for Fallout V and Elders Scrolls VI.
 
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Microsoft and Xbox have different views about exclusive games and their potential revenues as non-exclusive games.

In other words, the only reason why Cuphead was released on the Switch and PS4 as because the install base for those two platforms far exceed Xbox's install base. So why prevent Microsoft from earning potential revenue when they can just make those "exclusives" into timed-exclusives.

I'm predicting Starfield to release on the PS5 a year or two after it's release on the Xbox and same goes for Fallout V and Elders Scrolls VI.

Microsoft doesn't earn anything from Cuphead sales on other platforms.
 

MiyazakiHatesKojima

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They self published on other platforms after the initial publishing deal with microsoft expired.

Welcome back by the way :)
Arigatou!

I'm guessing they bought themselves out of the publishing deal and decided to self-publish on the rest of the platforms.
 

ChuckeRearmed

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They are putting some of their titles on PC, also this isn't about Sony, its about MS. Its MS that spends billions on IPs and then puts them on many platforms. Its simply something Nintendo or Sony have done much if ever.
MS bought Nokia mobile division and ran it into the ground. Their yearly profits cover all the expenses so they can afford that.
They bought Linkedin and Skype and eventually it started to generate profits.

MS has done this already with Minecraft so bring up "Sony" is irrelevant. They are different publishers with different views. Sony doesn't fucking have a desire to be 3rd party and Sony doesn't own a PC OS. Massive difference.
Why everybody brings Minecraft? Don't you see what Minecraft is? It is a media franchise, to the point where it might have its own movie.
I don't doubt that Bethesda's games will come to PC. But they won't come to Sony's console.

I saw some people thinking that for example, Starfield will come to PS5 on the first day (70$ and on GamePass for free) while forgetting that Sony wanted to money-hat it for exclusivity. But "generous" MS will bring it on a silver plate to Sony and will say please no need to spend they money to bring more people to PS. We will do it ourselves! LMAO

Not likely my friend. Theses comments indicate that they likely have similar plans with this IP that they did with Minecraft and it makes complete sense why. It might be too much money to spend to then fucking sell to less consumers.
I'd like to reminds that when they bought Minecraft they immediately said that it will be available everywhere. Not the case with Bethesda. The same fact that people want MS to release them on PS just not to purchase Xbox or GamePass, means that MS should not and won't release game on PS. Why would they help PS to sell more consoles?
 
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Garani

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How do you know this? You're just making baseless assumptions.

Game Pass is a loss leader. It's not supposed to make profit by itself. It's there to lock people into the xbox ecosystem, where they will spend much more money and bring in much more profit than game pass cost them.

You do need to start reading the whole message and, unless English isn't your first language, your lack of understanding is inexcusable.

I expressed my idea about the sustainability of Gamepass and I made sure not to make it an absolute statement by clearly stating that I am open to be proven wrong. At this point in time I will not write that GamePass is sustainable, because it isn't and similar services are showing that they still aren't after a number of years in business.

And by the way, if Game Pass is a loss leader supposed to bring people within the XBox Ecosystem, why is it available on PC and Mobile as well? Why are brand new games, not just first parties, available on Game Pass from release date? The financials just don't add up.
 
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ReBurn

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And by the way, if Game Pass is a loss leader supposed to bring people within the XBox Ecosystem, why is it available on PC and Mobile as well?

Because Xbox is not just a console to Microsoft. Xbox is a platform now that extends to consoles, PC and mobile. It's a service that allows people to play games that's not constrained by which plastic box you own.

Why are brand new games, not just first parties, available on Game Pass from release date?
There are developers who have stated in interviews that releasing first on Gamepass helped them make more money from their games than a standard release would have. Particularly indies.

And by the way, if Game Pass is a loss leader ... The financials just don't add up.

If your assertion that Gamepass isn't financially viable then it would fit the definition of loss leader, which is a product a company loses money on in order to gain market share and/or economy of scale. So the way your statement begins doesn't align with the way your statement ends. Conceptually, the money that Microsoft is spending on Gamepass is an investment that they intend to increase subscription volume which brings in recurring revenue.

If the subscription model for entertainment media wasn't viable we wouldn't see so many companies releasing their own subscription services. When it comes to video games the way they've been traditionally sold, is making a multimillion dollar investment years in advance and hoping that they can sell enough copies to recoup the investment, the way it has traditionally been done, less risky than releasing games on a platform that guarantees recurring revenue as long as they game is available on the platform? Especially when that platform makes it easier for people to buy your game after trying it?
 
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Garani

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Because Xbox is not just a console to Microsoft. Xbox is a platform now that extends to consoles, PC and mobile. It's a service that allows people to play games that's not constrained by which plastic box you own.

No it's not. XBox is a brand for the plastic box. That's it. PCs and Mobile are not XBox.

There are developers who have stated in interviews that releasing first on Gamepass helped them make more money from their games than a standard release would have. Particularly indies.

Of course they do! A AAA game would never be able to live on gamepass alone. For a small 1/2 men studio with no visibility whatsoever gamepass is a God sent.

If your assertion that Gamepass isn't financially viable then it would fit the definition of loss leader, which is a product a company loses money on in order to gain market share and/or economy of scale.

Yada yada yada. Once that you put all your AAA games on gamepass no one would buy them, thus cutting other form of revenues. And once you can play them on PCs, no one from that crown would buy an XBox console. Come one, it's clear as day.

If the subscription model for entertainment media wasn't viable we wouldn't see so many companies releasing their own subscription services.

Because they are out there to get market share, kill the compatitor, and then raise prices. We have seen Netflix doing it already, and the rest will come soon enough. Disney is actually making you pay for "first release" an extra 30 bucks, so you see that the subscription model isn't really working out.

But we'll see. I stand firm on my idea that the subscription model doesn't work for AAA new releases. Time will tell.
 

ReBurn

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No it's not. XBox is a brand for the plastic box. That's it. PCs and Mobile are not XBox.



Of course they do! A AAA game would never be able to live on gamepass alone. For a small 1/2 men studio with no visibility whatsoever gamepass is a God sent.



Yada yada yada. Once that you put all your AAA games on gamepass no one would buy them, thus cutting other form of revenues. And once you can play them on PCs, no one from that crown would buy an XBox console. Come one, it's clear as day.



Because they are out there to get market share, kill the compatitor, and then raise prices. We have seen Netflix doing it already, and the rest will come soon enough. Disney is actually making you pay for "first release" an extra 30 bucks, so you see that the subscription model isn't really working out.

But we'll see. I stand firm on my idea that the subscription model doesn't work for AAA new releases. Time will tell.
Well, you don't get to define the scope of what Xbox is just because it supports your argument about viability of gamepass. Gamepass for PC is literally called Xbox Game Pass for PC. You access it via the Xbox app for PC. The Xbox Series devices are part of the platform. They are not THE platform.

Also, at no time did anyone say that Gamepass was going to be the only way that games are delivered. Nobody has ever suggested that traditional sales channels would be shut down and people would only be able to get games this way. You can still go to Best Buy or Amazon and buy movies on disc. You can still buy albums on vinyl from other sources...you don't have to only listen to them on Spotify. So saying it's not viable as the only way to buy games is pointless because there's no reality that this scenario exists in.

Netflix, Spotify, etc have not killed their competitors and raised prices. There is no empirical evidence that this will happen. They're still way cheaper for most people than buying all of the content they want to consume and, if anything, they prove that people don't want to own everything they consume. Most people are perfectly happy with the concept of on demand use, even gamers. Evidence of this is the number of used copies of video games for sale everywhere. People play games and offload them. That's a fact. Entertainment media is completely disposable to most people so it makes sense to have cheaper methods that allow people to access content for short periods of time and then give it back when they are finished.

We don't live in 1990 any more and society is not constrained by the limits of that time. Holding on to the business model from decades ago isn't what consumers want and it isn't viable for most developers. It's time for new ideas unless you like the idea of game prices continuing to rise to squeeze more money out of you for essentially the same amount of content or less.
 
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Garani

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Well, you don't get to define the scope of what Xbox is just because it supports your argument about viability of gamepass. Gamepass for PC is literally called Xbox Game Pass for PC. You access it via the Xbox app for PC. The Xbox Series devices are part of the platform. They are not THE platform.

I don't, they did. XBox is a hardware platform made from consoles, not PCs, not Mobiles. Any other discussion on the subject is simply invalid and I will not entertain it.

Also, at no time did anyone say that Gamepass was going to be the only way that games are delivered. Nobody has ever suggested that traditional sales channels would be shut down and people would only be able to get games this way.

I get it that you like MS and Game Pass, an I am fine with it. But to try to convince me that if I get a game via Game Pass I will buy it too, it's ludicrous.

Netflix, Spotify, etc have not killed their competitors and raised prices.

They just raised their prices, because their previous price point was insustainable.

They're still way cheaper for most people than buying all of the content they want to consume and, if anything, they prove that people don't want to own everything they consume. Most people are perfectly happy with the concept of on demand use, even gamers. Evidence of this is the number of used copies of video games for sale everywhere. People play games and offload them. That's a fact. Entertainment media is completely disposable to most people so it makes sense to have cheaper methods that allow people to access content for short periods of time and then give it back when they are finished.

I agree with the whole point.

We don't live in 1990 any more and society is not constrained by the limits of that time. Holding on to the business model from decades ago isn't what consumers want and it isn't viable for most developers. It's time for new ideas unless you like the idea of game prices continuing to rise to squeeze more money out of you for essentially the same amount of content or less.

When you rent/resell there is someone who bough the good in the first place from the producer. That amount of money go to the producer (less market costs, of course). With subscription model like Game Pass or PS Now the publisher will not get the full money anymore, but just a fraction of it, and will not be able to enjoy any type of sales. This model can be acceptable for indies or old AAAs (like it happen on PS Now), but not for AAA just off the press (for example I just paid €15 for 1 month of UPlay+, when I played and beat WD:L and ACV, and then unsubscribed. This model is fine for me that I played 2 AAA games at €7/each, but not for Ubisoft).
 

Drewpee

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So what does this rather vague phrasing mean for Bethesda titles on other platforms? While Xbox CFO Tim Stuart didn’t make any announcements regarding Xbox exclusivity, he did have some rather interesting things to say about the matter, including the fact that Microsoft is keen to keep supporting cross-platform play.

“When we think about Bethesda, it's going to be the continuing to allow -- I'll say allow, but continue to sell their games on the platforms that they exist today, and we'll determine what that looks over time and will change over time”, the CFO said. “I'm not making any announcements about exclusivity or something like that. But that model will change.”

He added, “Microsoft is a platform. We're one of the first to really support Minecraft, Roadblock, Fortnite across platforms. So we highly encourage cross-platform play, simply from this landscape of, if it's good for the gaming ecosystem, it's good for us, classic rising tide lifts all boats.”

Like Phil Spencer, the executive points out that, in the long run, Microsoft doesn’t have intentions to pull content from either Sony or Nintendo. He did state, however, that Microsoft wants Bethesda content to show up the best it can on Xbox platforms, also hinting at some form of timed-exclusivity for Bethesda titles on Xbox.

This is great, as a gamer that plays primarily on Xbox it was awesome to see the investment they made in gaming with the purchase, but I always felt like making Bethesda games console exclusive would hurt gaming overall, even though it might be more lucrative for Xbox as a brand.

I hope they keep releasing games on all platforms, just give me the day one release on Gamepass and I am a happy gamer.
 
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MrFunSocks

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I don't, they did. XBox is a hardware platform made from consoles, not PCs, not Mobiles. Any other discussion on the subject is simply invalid and I will not entertain it.



I get it that you like MS and Game Pass, an I am fine with it. But to try to convince me that if I get a game via Game Pass I will buy it too, it's ludicrous.



They just raised their prices, because their previous price point was insustainable.



I agree with the whole point.



When you rent/resell there is someone who bough the good in the first place from the producer. That amount of money go to the producer (less market costs, of course). With subscription model like Game Pass or PS Now the publisher will not get the full money anymore, but just a fraction of it, and will not be able to enjoy any type of sales. This model can be acceptable for indies or old AAAs (like it happen on PS Now), but not for AAA just off the press (for example I just paid €15 for 1 month of UPlay+, when I played and beat WD:L and ACV, and then unsubscribed. This model is fine for me that I played 2 AAA games at €7/each, but not for Ubisoft).
Let me get this right..........

You think that you know better than Microsoft who themselves call Xbox a service/product that covers a range of devices and platforms, including mobile, console, and PC?

As the other person trying to correct you pointed out, Windows 10 comes with the Xbox App by default. It comes with the Xbox Game Bar by default. You sign in to Xbox on the switch to play Minecraft. You bet achievements on Xbox games on iOS. You can stream Xbox games directly to android phones via xcloud.

This really the hill you want to die on, or do you want to reconsider?
 
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Garani

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Let me get this right..........

You think that you know better than Microsoft who themselves call Xbox a service/product that covers a range of devices and platforms, including mobile, console, and PC?

Let me get this right: MS has always been right and never wrong. Only success stories. Like with Nokia and the whole history of XBox? Because companies fail as well as succeed.

XBox is the consoles. To which they attached Game Pass and their game store for PCs. That's it.
 

Raven117

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I mean, nothing has happened yet. It’s just people trying to interpret vague corporate speak. Safest bet is to assume Bethesda games won’t be on Playstation.
Other than trash talk, I don’t care one iota whether it’s on Sony or Microsoft only. It’s just that some people get so revved up about something so stupid.
 

Aidah

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Interesting. I figured that they'd go for exclusivity, but this sounds the opposite. At this point I wouldn't be surprised if the "differentiator" is simply Game Pass.
 

AV

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...um tell that to Nintendo. Why don't their second party studios release their games on Playstation consoles?

MS and Nintendo are apples and oranges, they're not direct competitors, they're on their own hardware release schedule and aren't trying to beat the competition, carving out their own niche as the only ones to offer a dedicated handheld system. Different approaches to business. No-one can say if it's the best approach ultimately, but it works pretty damn well for them given just how many units they shift. They have their own Nintendo brand appeal which draws people in way more than the other companies.

Nintendo keep almost everything on their platform, not even PC, and you buy into that ecosystem to get access to everything. TES and Fallout are huge, but they're not Mario/Zelda/MK/Smash/Pokémon/etc combined huge. Not even close. Just look at the October NPDs, notice anything? Zero Xbox exclusives, one Sony exclusive, nine Nintendo exclusives. One of them is a launch title from 3.5 years ago. It's always like this.

Nintendo also didn't just buy a studio who until now have been putting out popular multi-platform games.
 
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Sub Boss

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Anything to back this up other than feelings? "first or better or best" does not indicate "full exclusive forever". Nor has anything they've said on the matter up to this point honestly.

Completely ignoring an install base as big as Playstation would be crazy, but X amount of timed exclusivity will be enough to push diehards over to the other platform. No chance some of those people are waiting for TES6, they'll just flip.
This is going to be another one of those things where everyone who supports Microsoft is adamant the games will never come to PlayStation... and then games inevitably come to PlayStation (probably timed exclusive) because this is the real world, and money talks.
Other than the billions of dollars Microsoft spend to acquire Bethesda/Zenimax basically only to put their content where they decide no ,but you would think they wouldn't spend that much money only to let PlayStation have a piece of the delicious pie 🥧
 

Ogbert

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Jesus. Let it go people.

I can’t believe there are Sony fans out there still thinking they will get Bethesda games. And I say this as someone with a PS5 arriving on Thursday.
 
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devilNprada

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Game Pass is a loss leader. It's not supposed to make profit by itself. It's there to lock people into the xbox ecosystem, where they will spend much more money and bring in much more profit than game pass cost them.

Say what?
Why do they have it on PC then?
Spend more money; you mean like on real games?
 

AV

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Other than the billions of dollars Microsoft spend to acquire Bethesda/Zenimax basically only to put their content where they decide no ,but you would think they wouldn't spend that much money only to let PlayStation have a piece of the delicious pie 🥧

They don't have to make everything multi-platform. They can very easily make less popular games like Dishonored and DOOM exclusive while making TES6 and Fallout 5 only temporary. Telling the rabid, thirsty fans they have to wait a year will be enough to get them to jump into the ecosystem, but not everyone. Some will happily wait a while and then pay full price on PS5, where MS will still take a fat cut of the profit.

I don't know what they'll do with the lesser titles, but I'm confident TES and Fallout will be available elsewhere, even if it's after a year or whatever. Whoever's right, this thread is gonna be a goldmine later on, much like the one where people claimed that Switch was obviously gonna fail. At this point, frankly, nothing is "obvious".
 
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Ogbert

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On another read, this sounds really confusing.

What does "pulling content" mean? Games that are already released? Or just established franchises?

Yes, exactly that. Whether MS would
consider removing games that are currently available on PS. Skyrim, for example.

Obviously that makes no sense, so it’s essentially dismissed.
 

ReBurn

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Let me get this right: MS has always been right and never wrong. Only success stories. Like with Nokia and the whole history of XBox? Because companies fail as well as succeed.

XBox is the consoles. To which they attached Game Pass and their game store for PCs. That's it.
Considering they own the platform they will always be "right" when it comes to what the platform is. You can have opinions, sure. But they ultimately decide what Xbox is. PlayStation Now is still PlayStation even when you access it from PC.
 
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Ogbert

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And i can't believe people really think this is about Sony fans...

Xbox fans win, TES fans lose here..

But by category, it can only impact Sony surely?

It will be on Xbox and PC. The only other machine capable of running their new games is the PlayStation.
 

The Alien

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Why would they have to ask for Game pass. They'd be getting 70 bucks per game....
Because Microsoft cares more about subscriptions than they do console or game sales.

Putting GamePass on other platforms is a steady stream of revenue. If GamePass is on Sony or Nintendo, you'll get 3/10 people subscribing for a month or two to play a Bethesda game. Then you'll also have 7/10 people sign up to play Bethesda and other games.

They'll make more money with more people subscribing on GamePass than they would by selling copies of Elder Scrolls 6.

Not sure it'd happen, but that's how I see Bethesda games going multiplat.
 

Dolomite

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Had to really think about whether or not to jump into this thread. Much better to lurk and laugh
 

ChuckeRearmed

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And i can't believe people really think this is about Sony fans...

Xbox fans win, TES fans lose here..
Well, TES has always been Xbox & PC game in general so...The only one TES that was released on PS with no strings attached was Skyrim no? So basically only one project. So if it does not come to PS, Sony fans won't lose anything anyway.

Make no mistake - when people talked about MS obligation regarding TES, they think about not wanting to miss the game on PS5. They don't think about other platforms (Switch). Just like Sony tried to money-hat Starfield. They certainly did that to help the community on other platforms :messenger_tears_of_joy: Deathloop, Ghostwire are all new games and they were money-hatted and it was ok. But suddenly Starfield should come to PS consoles for some reason? It is not about the greater good, it is about poor Sony with their enormous market share.
 
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devilNprada

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But by category, it can only impact Sony surely?

It will be on Xbox and PC. The only other machine capable of running their new games is the PlayStation.

No sir it impacts TES fans who are going to get an underwelming game made for game pass.
One reason the franchise can be so ambitious is that it is being released on every platform.
I agree the 7.5 billion is gone, but you still need to make your game production cost back.

Well, TES has always been Xbox & PC game in general so...The only one TES that was released on PS with no strings attached was Skyrim no? So basically only one project. So if it does not come to PS, Sony fans won't lose anything anyway.

Exactly TES didn't make any diehard TES fans on Playstation platforms.
 

BootsLoader

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That’s bullshit talk. Of course they say that they will support other platforms and will turn the tables before release and say “timed exclusive” or “exclusive” to set the internet on fire. Simple!
 

ChuckeRearmed

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Exactly TES didn't make any diehard TES fans on Playstation platforms.
Probably not. PS has always been a third-person games platform, with all their greatest games being the third person.

The most diehard TES fans are on PC though. When asking about Skyrim/Oblivion/Morrowind: After all these years? Always :messenger_tears_of_joy:
 
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