Phil Spencer has explained that due to current restrictions, he can’t open up much about the specific plans that Xbox has in store with Bethesda until 2021.
Ever since Microsoft announced that it would be acquiring ZeniMax Media, and by proxy Bethesda Softworks and all of its studios, there have been hundreds of questions swirling in regards to the future. Will Microsoft make all Bethesda titles exclusive to the Xbox ecosystem? How will this affect previously announced plans from Bethesda? And when will the publisher’s full catalog be coming to Xbox Game Pass? Well, now we have a good idea of why those over at Xbox haven’t specifically answered some of these lingering inquiries.
In a conversation with GameReactor, Xbox head Phil Spencer said that due to the ongoing nature of the ZeniMax acquisition, he can’t comment much on specifics related to how Microsoft will manage Bethesda going forward. For those unaware, the deal won’t be finalized until early 2021, meaning that due to certain regulations that are in place, commenting on some topics right now aren’t possible for Spencer.
“We expect early in 2021 the deal will close. But I say that because I want people to know, I’m not sitting down with Todd Howard and Robert Altman and planning their future. Because I’m currently not allowed to do that, that would be illegal,” Spencer said clearly. “Your question is completely inbound, but I get a lot of questions right now: ‘is this game exclusive? Is this game exclusive?’ And right now, that is not my job in regards to ZeniMax. My job is not to sit down and go through their portfolio and dictate what happens.”
Obviously, once these restrictions are lifted, Spencer will surely be talking more about the course that Microsoft has in mind for Bethesda. Speaking in broad strokes, Spencer did say that he wants all of the Bethesda studios to create their best projects while working under Microsoft. “I want those amazing studious to create the best games they ever created,” Spencer said. “I want them to do the most amazing work and support them in doing that.”
With the Xbox Series X and S poised to launch in just a few short weeks, the addition of Bethesda to Xbox Game Studios definitely has Microsoft set up well heading into next-gen. And even if Spencer can’t provide much information yet on how the publishing label will be utilized, it seems like the future could be bright for both parties.