“I think what is missing from our portfolio is casual content with a broad appeal.”
Hot off the heels of announcing that it would be acquiring Bethesda Softworks in 2021, many have wondered whether or not this would be the end of Microsoft’s plans for future acquisitions. Well, based on some new quotes that have today emerged, this doesn’t seem to be the case.
Xbox head Phil Spencer recently spoke to GameReactor and was asked about the potential of Microsoft acquiring even more companies in the future. Spencer said that in order to continue to grow Xbox Game Pass, which is one of the company’s biggest goals right now, more acquisitions will be needed. “So, with the growth that we are seeing, I expect we will constantly be in this mode of bringing more creators into the fold,” Spencer said.
When it comes to what types of studios Xbox might be interested in picking up in the future, well, it’s a far cry compared to the type of games you’d see in Bethesda’s portfolio. “If we look at what people are playing on Xbox, what Game Pass subscribers are playing, I think what is missing from our portfolio is casual content with a broad appeal. E-rated content (to use an ESRB rating) is not a strength for us,” Spencer explained. “We obviously have Minecraft and we have some other franchises. But when I think about expanding the creative palette that our teams have, I think that is critically important.”
Spencer’s comments on continuing to grow Xbox Game Studios also lines up with what Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has expressed as well. Speaking in an interview last month, Nadella said that he expects Xbox Game Studios to continue to grow “where it makes sense.” Given what Spencer has said, looking to pick up a studio that focuses on E-rated content might fill that bubble that would “make sense” for Xbox.
Of course, if Xbox does end up announcing a new acquisition of some sort in the future, it could seemingly be divulged at any point. While Microsoft has largely made these acquisition announcements on large stages at the likes of venues such as E3, the Bethesda purchase was simply disclosed on a Monday morning in a blog post. Either way, the future continues to look hopeful for Microsoft as the release of the Xbox Series X/S grows near.