Gaming

Phil Spencer reveals Xbox will continue buying studios to “feed” Game Pass

Published: 26/Oct/2020 23:59

by Brent Koepp

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During an October 26 interview, Microsoft’s Phil Spencer revealed the company’s plans to continue to buy more studios. The executive explained that the acquisitions are needed for Xbox Game Pass.

The gaming industry was shaken to its core when Bethesda announced that it had been acquired by Microsoft in September. The tech giant paid $7.2 billion to bring popular series’ such as Fallout and Elder Scrolls under their console’s brand.

However, according to Xbox lead Phil Spencer, this is just the beginning. In an October interview, the executive explained that they will be purchasing more studios in order to “feed” their Game Pass service. 

xbox buying bethesda
Twitter: @bethesda
Microsoft purchased Bethesda in September for billions of dollars.

Phil Spencer reveals Xbox’s plans to “feed” Game Pass

Microsoft’s move to buy Bethesda in September was the first major shot fired in the next-gen showdown between Xbox and PlayStation. The massive deal immediately solved the American platform’s lack of first-party story driven content which plagued them in the previous generation.

According to Phil Spencer in an interview with GameReactor, more acquisitions are on the horizon. “And frankly, as Game Pass continues to grow, we need to continue to feed that subscription,” he stated.

The Microsoft executive also stated that the company will be “constantly” looking to purchase more studios because of the service: “So, with the growth that we are seeing, I expect we will constantly be in this mode of bringing more creators into the fold.”

According to Spencer, Xbox’s focus on Game Pass has given him support from Microsoft to acquire teams: “We built a business model that prioritised investing in content knowing that we would have to invest early and wait a while for those investments to pay off.”

xbox game pass
Xbox
Xbox Game Pass offers players a wealth of titles to play from.

It remains to be seen what studios the tech giant could buy up next. Their strategy to continue to buy up properties is sure to have Sony on alert. The company could soon acquire games that were historically associated with the PlayStation brand, but not actually exclusive to the Japanese company.

Spencer clarified in the interview that the Bethesda deal has not actually closed yet, and won’t be until sometime in 2021. Interestingly, the Xbox head explained that it would be “illegal” to discuss future plans for the studio, so he can’t comment on whether games like Fallout will be exclusive to the Microsoft platform or not.

Overwatch

When is Overwatch Winter Wonderland 2020 event? Everything we know

Published: 2/Dec/2020 21:29

by Michael Gwilliam

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It’s finally December, which means Overwatch’s annual Christmas event dubbed Winter Wonderland is just around the corner. Here is everything we know about the upcoming event, when it comes out and what to expect.

Like most Overwatch events, there are a couple of things to know about Winter Wonderland: it will bring new skins and a limited-time game mode.

What special game modes will the event include?

In the case of Winter Wonderland, there are two: Mei’s Snowball Challenge and Yeti Hunter.

Just as with Summer Games and Halloween Terror 2020, don’t expect to see either mode revamped too heavily. Instead, what Blizzard has been doing is added some slight tweaks to the classics.

Mei hit with snowball in Overwatch
Blizzard Entertainment
Mei’s Snowball Offensive is expected to return.

With Mei’s Snowball Offensive, every player has to play as Mei with her primary fire shooting a snowball. If you hit an opponent, they’re eliminated and the team with no players remaining loses the round.

Meanwhile, Yeti Hunt has Mei players tasked with freezing a “Yeti” in the form of Winston on Nepal Village. It will be interesting to see how or if Blizzard decides to modify the modes like they’ve done in the past.

New Winter Wonderland skins

Winter Wonderland also introduces new skins themed around Christmas or just snow-themed attire including winter sports. Some of the popular skins from years past include Santa Torbjorn, Ugly Sweater 76, Nutcracker Zenyatta and Beachrat.

Orisa gets puppy for Christmas
Blizzard Entertainment
Players can unwrap all sorts of cosmetics.

It will be interesting to see which heroes get skins this year. Notably, D.Va, Baptiste, Brigitte, Genji and Echo don’t have any Winter Wonderland skins yet, so there is a chance they get some this time around.

When will the event start?

In the past, Winter Wonderland has begun on December, 13, 12, 11 and 10 with each day falling on a Tuesday.

Based on this, both December the 8 and December 15 are likely candidates. However, the 15 would leave just ten days between the event starting and Christmas, so that may play a factor for when Blizzard decides to kick off the festivities.

In any case, the event should be a fun one, especially as Overwatch 2 looms with BlizzCon on the horizon come February. Will this be the final Christmas event in the regular Overwatch game? We’ll have to wait and see.