Why Bethesda’s Xbox Exclusivity is a Good Thing

Sorry, Sony fans

Key Takeaways

  • Bethesda has officially joined the Xbox family.
  • Future Bethesda games could be exclusive to PC and Xbox.
  • While disappointing for PlayStation fans, this could be an excellent move for Xbox and PC players.
A gamer, playing on a PC in a dimly lit room.
Sean Do / Unsplash

Now that Bethesda Softworks officially has joined up with Microsoft, PC and Xbox fans have a bright future to look forward to, experts say.

When news of Bethesda joining the Xbox family first broke several months ago, many were concerned about what it could mean for the future of Bethesda's games on non-Xbox platforms.

Now that the deal officially has gone through, we have finally received an answer. In the future, some Bethesda titles could be available on Xbox and PC only, which means PlayStation fans could find themselves missing out.

"The Bethesda deal is a huge move for Microsoft and Xbox," Josh Chambers, an editor at HowtoGame, told Lifewire via email. "It not only adds to the extensive list of publishers they've acquired in recent times, it also bolsters Xbox Game Pass to a whole new level.”

Building Out the Catalog

Despite the excitement surrounding both of Microsoft’s new consoles, many have felt that the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S don’t offer enough reason to purchase them.

"All that talk about Game Pass and value, and the only launch date Game Pass game for Xbox Series X and S is Gears Tactics...meaning every other game (including Tactics) is just current-gen or 360 or Xbox. That's bad value and lack of a reason to buy…" one user wrote on Twitter.

While many agreed that the next generation of Xbox consoles lacked new games, Bethesda’s recent acquisition by Xbox could be a leap forward in that regard, especially as Microsoft continues to push its monthly subscription service, Game Pass.

"With the addition of the Bethesda creative teams, gamers should know that Xbox consoles, PC, and Game Pass will be the best place to experience new Bethesda games," Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, wrote in a blog post, "including some new titles in the future that will be exclusive to Xbox and PC players."

The final part of this statement brings a lot of hope to the table for Xbox and PC players. While more recent releases like Fallout 76 might have been disappointing, Bethesda and its parent company, ZeniMax Media, have garnered a lot of love from gamers thanks to the releases of titles like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

The prospect of playing those future titles exclusively could help push current and new fans of the Xbox to pick up the Series X or Series S.

A Good Time to Be an Xbox Fan

Since Game Pass launched, and since the launch of Xbox Play Anywhere, the Xbox console hasn’t had any real "console sellers" or exclusive titles.

Now that Bethesda is looking into releasing exclusive titles on the console and PC, we could finally see something that pushes the Series X to truly feel like a next-gen console. It is important to note that not every Bethesda game will be exclusive, at least not yet.

"There are contractual obligations that we’re gonna see through like we always do in every one of these instances," Spencer explained in a roundtable that premiered on March 11.

"We have games that exist on other platforms, and we’re going to support those games on the platforms they’re on. There are communities of players—we love those communities—and we’ll continue to invest in them."

"But, if you’re an Xbox customer, the thing I want you to know is this is about delivering great exclusive games for you that ship on platforms where Game Pass exists. That’s our goal. That’s why we’re doing this."

In a time where Xbox has received a lot of criticism over its lack of exclusives, putting the future of Bethesda’s hit titles on the PC and Xbox just makes sense.

There’s also always the possibility that we see Bethesda games debuting as timed exclusives on Xbox, then releasing on PlayStation months or even years later.

"While it has been a bit hush hush over future Xbox exclusive games from Bethesda," Chambers told us, "I'd anticipate that we'll see either a timed exclusivity of the next installment from the Elder Scrolls franchise and potentially full exclusivity of Starfield, the new IP from Todd Howard."

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