Microsoft will “let Bethesda be”, says Bethesda founder

“My understanding is that Microsoft respects Bethesda’s 34 years of proven ability”

Bethesda’s original founder, Christopher Weaver, has said that he believes Microsoft will “let Bethesda be”, following the tech giant’s purchase of the developer’s parent company, ZeniMax Media.

Weaver, who is no longer in the gaming industry but still owns part of ZeniMax Media, stated in an interview with Inverse that Microsoft is unlikely to change how Bethesda currently operates. “My understanding is that Microsoft respects Bethesda’s 34 years of proven ability to produce quality software and has promised to let Bethesda be Bethesda,” he said.

However, Weaver also cautioned that nothing is set in stone, adding that he has “yet to meet an executive who does not want to accelerate the sale of a potential product”, though he believes that consumers will benefit most from this acquisition. “Users from around the world will be the ultimate beneficiaries of this deal,” he added.

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The former gaming veteran also said that the deal could be a success for both companies, albeit if properly managed. “Consolidation can provide a powerful mechanism for groups to share experience and ‘best practices’,” Weaver said, while also highlighting the significance of the acquisition so close to the release of both Microsoft and Sony’s upcoming next-gen consoles: the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5.

“I do not think it is any accident that this announcement occurred so close to Sony’s PS5 announcement. There are only a limited number of proven creators of AAA,” Weaver said. He also hinted that the purchase could mean that Bethesda games in the future might be Microsoft exclusives, saying that “what Microsoft owns, Sony cannot get”.

Xbox head Phil Spencer recently teased Microsoft’s future with Bethesda, saying that the “future roadmap” of upcoming games is “incredibly exciting” for the company. He also spoke about the two companies’ relationship and why the acquisition made sense for Microsoft: “The partnership was just so natural.”

On the other hand, Sony previously ruled out a game subscription model for its consoles. Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO and President Jim Ryan said that such a service “doesn’t make any sense” for the company’s plans.

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