Image: Starfield

Microsoft announced that it had successfully completed its acquisition of Bethesda Game Studios’ parent company, ZeniMax Media, for $7.5 billion in March 2021. One of the consequences of that decision is that Starfield and other future Bethesda blockbusters will be exclusive to Xbox, which is terrible news for PlayStation fans, but director and executive producer Todd Howard has pointed out that the exclusivity will actually allow him and his team to develop a “better product.” This is largely thanks to Bethesda only having to worry about a single set of similar platforms, which lets the developer better narrow its focus. Starfield will be released on Xbox Series X|S and PC on November 11, 2022.

“‘Pick a side’ meaning… PlayStation? Is that what you mean? Well.. a little bit. You don’t ever want to leave people out, right? But at the end of the day, your ability to focus and say, this is the game I want to make, these are the platforms I want to make it on, and being able to really lean in on those is going to make for a better product.”

Source: Telegraph, Wccftech

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5 Comments

  1. Result in a better game? No.

    Platforms often dictate a technical level of graphics or other achievement, but it’s never made or prevented a game from being good – that’s all on the developer.

    The best graphics and hardware in the world won’t make a bad game good – you’ll just have some really shiney reflective ray traced mud puddles with volumetric fog and DLSS all the things – of a crap game. And I’m sure it will sell some – if nothing else just so people can see the spectacle. But it won’t be groundbreaking, it won’t be genre-defining, and it won’t move people. Maybe you’ll get lucky and it will break even just on looky-lous and people wanting to benchmark new systems.

    I get that AAA games often think they need all these bells and whistles to be competitive. I wish they would just remember that you really just need good core gameplay, everything else is frosting on that cake. They seem to get it backwards a lot of the times – and I’m sure most of that is publisher / investor pressure, since they don’t really understand gaming psychology and just want to see a return on an investment, and the surest way to do that it make it sizzle and sparkle, gameplay be damned.

  2. If the PS5 and XSX architecture weren’t so similar, I’d almost believe Todd. With that said, I’m hoping the Xbox/PC exclusivity gives us cross progression/play anywhere features.

    Oh, and hoping MS really pushes Bethesda to focus on designing their UI for keyboard + mouse again. Always felt since they hit the consoles, their UI has been too tailored for a gamepad. Sure mods fixed this aspect, but it’d be nice to see the default interface KB+M friendly.

  3. [QUOTE=”Brian_B, post: 36123, member: 96″]
    Result in a better game? No.

    Platforms often dictate a technical level of graphics or other achievement, but it’s never made or prevented a game from being good – that’s all on the developer.

    The best graphics and hardware in the world won’t make a bad game good – you’ll just have some really shiney reflective ray traced mud puddles with volumetric fog and DLSS all the things – of a crap game. And I’m sure it will sell some – if nothing else just so people can see the spectacle. But it won’t be groundbreaking, it won’t be genre-defining, and it won’t move people. Maybe you’ll get lucky and it will break even just on looky-lous and people wanting to benchmark new systems.

    I get that AAA games often think they need all these bells and whistles to be competitive. I wish they would just remember that you really just need good core gameplay, everything else is frosting on that cake. They seem to get it backwards a lot of the times – and I’m sure most of that is publisher / investor pressure, since they don’t really understand gaming psychology and just want to see a return on an investment, and the surest way to do that it make it sizzle and sparkle, gameplay be damned.
    [/QUOTE]

    While I mostly agree I will say this. Games with shit graphics and UI will turn me off to the point that I won’t want to play the came. I don’t play phone games that look like crap and I don’t want to return to heroes quest games level of graphics and engagement either. So yea I want the game to look good and be good. Just one without the other is going to make me not get the game.

  4. [QUOTE=”SeymourGore, post: 36124, member: 158″]
    Oh, and hoping MS really pushes Bethesda to focus on designing their UI for keyboard + mouse again.
    [/QUOTE]
    LOL, judging by windows 11 leak it will be designed for touchscreens.

  5. [QUOTE=”Brian_B, post: 36123, member: 96″]
    Result in a better game? No.
    [/QUOTE]
    Sony’s exclusives tell a different story. Of course everybody knows it’s not because they are on a single platform, but because sony makes the necessary resources available for their exclusive developers. So if MS is doing the same, it can result in a better game.

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