Nowadays the philosophy seems to be if your company can't compete in a particular industry...buy someone who does it better. In recent years, a major topic has been the monopolizing of industries. Where one company has too much power in any given arena. Disney has fallen under this controversy, having bought up Lucasfilm, Marvel Comics (And Marvel Studios), the video game company Square Enix, and recently 20th Century Fox (Now called 20th Century Studios). With that, the company has been calculated to possess 25% of the entertainment industry. The merger with Fox took near 2 years because it required government approval to make sure Disney wasn't violating any such monopoly laws. And now, Microsoft is showing signs of doing the same thing.
Due to their struggle to compete with Sony's PlayStation, the Xbox developer has acquired not only Bungie (The makers of Halo and Destiny) but they also recently purchased Ninja Theory (The makers of such games as Heavenly Sword and the acclaimed "independent AAA" game Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice). This is all in an effort to develop more exclusive content for their systems (Something PlayStation has been known to have the market pegged on). Perhaps as a way to be more equipped in the upcoming next generation of consoles (PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S), Microsoft has added another massive company to their roster, that of ZeniMax Media, the parent company of Bethesda Softworks.
Purchased for an unthinkable $7.5 billion, Bethesda Softworks has prided itself on being one of the biggest privately held game developers and publishers in the world. Their list of franchises include Doom, Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, Quake, Wolfenstein, and Dishonored. With this acquisition, Microsoft now has ownership of all those franchises and that's not even all they get. In addition to Bethesda Game Studios and ZeniMax Online Studios, they will also now have the creative studio teams of Arkane, MachineGames, Tango Gameworks, Alpha Dog, and Roundhouse Studios. Microsoft had 15 studio teams BEFORE the acquisition...they now have 23.
Microsoft’s Xbox games division will add Bethesda’s franchises to its Xbox Game Pass cloud-based service, which has over 15 million subscribers. This is no doubt a power move by Microsoft as the announcement of this acquisition comes just hours before pre-orders for their new consoles go live. It remains to be seen if it will work. Stay tuned!