One of the more curious things to happen at Microsoft’s E3 presentation – which happened yesterday, by the way – wasn’t a game trailer at all, but rather, a sort of off-hand note from presenter and Xbox head Phil Spencer. And while it might not be the kind of thing a lot of people have given much time or thought to, I’d say it has some pretty darn big consequences.
The announcement was that Microsoft has officially acquired a number of prominent studios in the hopes of expanding their roster of exclusive games to be more competitive with Sony and Nintendo. These studios include Undead Labs, the creators of State of Decay, Playground Games, who are famous for Forza titles and an unknown title unrelated to racing games, Ninja Theory, which released the highly-praised Hellblade, and Compulsion Games, those fellows behind the sort-of-promising-but-now-kind-of-worrying We Happy Few.
On top of all that, they also announced that they would be opening up an entirely new studio
, called The Initiative, which will also be making games exclusively for Microsoft, although we know nothing else about it beyond that.
When you combine that knowledge with the other off-handed mark of the evening, that Microsoft is hard at work on the next Xbox
, it seems they’re really digging their heels in for the future. One of the biggest flaws of the Xbox has always been the exclusives
(due in some small part to the fact they just can’t get a footing in the Japanese market, where console games are still big deals) and it’s good to see Microsoft proactively addressing the issue with these purchases. Ninja Theory alone could probably prove a big boon for Microsoft with enough of a budget, but throw everyone else on top of that? Sony’s probably gonna start sweating real soon.
But then, we have yet to see what they’re bringing to the table, huh?