When Bethesda’s Todd Howard said that Starfield was “irresponsibly large” and contained “five or six” games, he was not joking. Microsoft’s new game Starfield has over 100 systems and 1,000 planets, but critics claimed that the main quest took 20 hours to complete.

You fight space pirates and take a spaceship to various planets and galaxies to try to find a strange artifact in the Microsoft-owned Bethesda game Starfield. Fallout 4 was a Bethesda game that was released before Microsoft bought the studio in 2020, making it one of Microsoft’s first aggressive investments in the gaming industry. Some of the game’s mechanics and designs are similar to those in Fallout 4.

After seven years of development, the Xbox-exclusive Starfield game was released on Wednesday. Experts say that Microsoft is betting on Starfield’s exclusivity to increase Microsoft’s gaming market share and drive console sales.

Experts also say that Microsoft is mostly safe from arguments that compare Starfield’s Xbox exclusivity to antitrust claims made by Activision Blizzard after their $69 billion acquisition.

Bethesda is a major studio “yet they’re not really prevailing,” said Joshua Foust, a scientist and feature writer who has expounded on the computer game industry and customer personalities. “Some players have been irritated and frustrated by Starfield’s exclusivity, but it has not destroyed the market,” the company states.

Microsoft acknowledged that gaming ranks it third behind Sony and Nintendo. According to information provided to The Seattle Times by S&P Global Market Intelligence, in the second quarter of 2023, Xbox Series X/S held a 21% market share worldwide, while Nintendo’s Switch and Sony’s PlayStation 5 consoles held 40% and 33% of the market, respectively.

Starfield, which is accessible in a $570 game-console group from certain retailers, is essential for Microsoft’s wagered to set Xbox deals comparable to rivals, as per Foust.

The Last of Us Parts I and II, as well as the Horizon series, are among Sony’s exclusive offerings. Final Fantasy XVI was released exclusively for the PlayStation 5 in June by Square Enix.

Foust stated, “Starfield’s success is really important.” Sony needs rivalry to not fall into stagnation.”

According to S&P data, shipments of PlayStation 5 and Switch increased 37.5% and 14%, respectively, in the second quarter of 2023, while shipments of Xbox Series X/S decreased by 2.4% in comparison to the same period last year.

Microsoft’s investment in gaming In 2020, while Starfield was still in development, Microsoft paid $7.5 billion for ZeniMax Media, the studio’s owner.

At the time, Microsoft’s acquisition of ZeniMax was the largest in the video game industry. Skyrim, the Fallout, and the Elder Scrolls series are all produced by Bethesda, based in Rockville, Maryland.

“With the procurement of Bethesda, we allegorically and in a real sense twofold our gaming content limit,” Microsoft Chief Satya Nadella let Bloomberg know when the securing was declared.

S&P Global Market Intelligence research analyst Neil Barbour stated in an interview that Microsoft’s gaming strategy has been forced to become more aggressive as a result of the Xbox One’s failure to expand the tech giant’s user base.

He stated, “This ZeniMax Bethesda acquisition, which is to date the fourth largest video game deal in history, was one of the first key acquisitions [Microsoft] made.”

Console gaming, Barbour said, is the main impetus behind generally gaming income.

The data from S&P show that overall revenue from console gaming content increased by 15.5% in the second quarter of 2023 in comparison to the same time last year. In an interview with Bloomberg TV, executive director Howard of Bethesda stated that 2023 will be a competitive year in the industry.

Activision Snowstorm securing
On the setting of Bethesda’s Starfield elite delivery is a monthslong fight for Microsoft to gain Vital mission at hand producer Activision Snowstorm for $69 billion, making it the biggest procurement in the computer game history. Regulators have said that Microsoft’s ability to make big-name games that are only available on Xbox could hurt the competition.

Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft Gaming and Xbox head, stated in an interview with Bloomberg TV on Wednesday that Starfield, which was available in preview for a week prior to its release date, was already the most-played exclusive Xbox Series X/S game.

Microsoft’s capacity to dominate the cloud gaming market is also a major source of regulators’ concerns. Microsoft agreed to grant Activision games’ cloud-streaming rights to game publisher Ubisoft Entertainment last month. The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority is currently looking into Microsoft’s Activision deal. A federal judge in the United States granted Microsoft permission to proceed with the acquisition in July.

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Spencer stated, “We want to ensure that our games are available on so many different places, on Xbox consoles, on PC, [and] also via cloud.” It really comes down to giving players a choice in how they play.

S&P’s Barbour stated that Starfield will not face regulatory scrutiny due to its console exclusivity.

He stated, “Starfield kind of falls in the middle, where it might be acceptable from a regulatory perspective to have it exclusive to consoles.”

Starfield was cited as being in contradiction to Microsoft’s promises to the European Commission that it would not produce Xbox-exclusive games in a complaint filed by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission against the Activision deal.

According to the complaint, “Shortly after the EC cleared the transaction, Microsoft made public its decision to make Microsoft exclusives of several of the newly acquired ZeniMax titles, including Starfield, Redfall, and The Elder Scrolls VI.”

Microsoft said accordingly that it respected the responsibility and the initial two games delivered by Bethesda after its procurement — Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo were PlayStation exclusives for a year before becoming available on Xbox.

In response to the FTC’s complaint, Microsoft stated that the company’s decisions regarding future ZeniMax games would be made “on a case-by-case basis, taking into account player demand and sentiment.”