Ever since Microsoft began their recent gaming studio shopping spree, the company’s policy on exclusives have been a bone of contention. As Microsoft tries to get their proposed $69 billion dollar acquisition of Activision Blizzard past regulators, they’ve been swearing up and down that Call of Duty will remain multiplatform, but at the same time, they’re insisting Bethesda’s Starfield will be an Xbox exclusive. Realistically, there are practical reasons why Starfield is exclusive while CoD isn’t, but still, it feels like Microsoft’s approach is somewhat scattershot at this point.
Well, in a new Xbox On interview, Phil Spencer seemed to be circling a more definitive answer about where Microsoft stands on the exclusivity question when asked about Starfield. Per Spencer, it all comes down to whether Microsoft is “pulling something away” from players on other platforms…
"I never said Starfield wouldn't be exclusive to Xbox. I think what I said is we're going to take it on a case-by-case basis. We're not going to pull games that are on other platforms. [...] Exclusive titles in the console space is part of the business. All platform-holders do it. They are marketing beats for the platform. Our competitors have a lot of exclusive games.
So, when we're launching new games, there are certain games that we're going to make... 'exclusive' for us is always a little bit hard, because we ship everything on PC as well, but let's just say, ship on Xbox, PC, and playable on cloud, and some of those won't be available on other competitive platforms.
There's no example in Bethesda of us pulling something away from the PlayStation community, that they had. Or of games people are playing, us not continuing to update those. Same thing with Minecraft, Minecraft Dungeons, and we'll do the same thing with [Minecraft] Legends when it comes out."
So, making Call of Duty exclusive would be pulling it away from PlayStation fans, so they won’t do that, but Starfield is a new IP, so it’s fair game to make it an exclusive. That makes sense, but one wonders how far Spencer is willing to extend that thinking. The Elder Scrolls has traditionally been multiplatform. So has Doom. So, will The Elder Scrolls VI or the next Doom be on PlayStation in the name of not pulling something away from players? Of course, once the Activision Blizzard acquisition passes (or falls through) and Spencer can speak a little more clearly about his plans, perhaps we’ll get a more definitive answer on this.
What do you think Microsoft’s approach to exclusives will be going forward? Are they going to be generous or are Call of Duty and Minecraft going to be the exceptions to the rule?
The post Starfield Xbox Exclusive while CoD isn’t as Spencer Wants to Avoid “Pulling Something Away” by Nathan Birch appeared first on Wccftech.