One of the most significant episodes of the end of 2020 in the video game industry, namely the acquisition of all the studios of the ZeniMax Media group by Microsoft for 7.5 billion dollars, now seems definitively act. Indeed, at the time of the events last September, Xbox, through the voice of Phil Spencer in particular, announced the agreement concluded but specifying that it would not be acted until the beginning of the year 2021. Transactions of this scale must be analyzed by different committees, in particular, to verify that they do not prejudice the principle of free competition.
After the green light issued by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) last Friday, this time it is the European Commission which authorizes the completion of the transaction without any concession, affirming that the deal “does not raise serious doubts as to its compatibility with the common market ”. From now on, nothing seems to oppose the acquisition of Bethesda, Arkane, id Software or even MachineGames by the Redmond firm. Xbox now owns 23 first-party studios. and thus has an ever richer catalog of licenses. However, as had been specified by the various parties upstream, the newly acquired studios will certainly be the property of Microsoft but will still continue to operate independently compared to other Xbox Game Studios.
Now that the deal is finally going to go through, it’s possible that Xbox will clarify its thoughts on whether or not future productions from the affected studios are exclusive, perhaps even during an event that could be held at the end of the month.