Ahead of today’s preorder of the Xbox Series X, Microsoft decided to drop a bombshell yesterday morning regarding the future of its portfolio.
For a whopping $7.5 billion dollars, Microsoft unveiled its acquisition of ZeniMax Media, the parent company of Bethesda Softworks and id Software, Arkane Studios, Machine Games, Tango Gameworks, and all of its properties. This gives Microsoft legendary franchises like Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, DOOM, Wolfenstein, Prey, Dishonored and plenty of others including future games like Starfield and The Elder Scrolls VI.
The acquisition has sent shockwaves across the industry, this is an equivalent of dropping an atomic bomb. This proves Microsoft is dead serious about the future of its portfolio and the future of the Xbox brand. With Project xCloud opening up to places where Microsoft and the Xbox brand are an afterthought, this will buff the catalogue tenfold with industry-leading games and household names alongside some nostalgic legendary IP into portfolio, games that anyone would have to kill for if they wanted to get them on their own merits, including the legendary Fallout series. Does Microsoft’s acquisition mean we get a sequel to New Vegas?
Now, that Bethesda and Obsidian are under the same roof, the possibility of another Obsidian-led Fallout and a Fallout possibly set in the American West is now a real thing. Fallout fans have had rough for a few years, Fallout 4 failed as an RPG and a Fallout game and Fallout 76 was an uneven game with Bethesda ditching the rich narrative of the Fallout games in favor of multiplayer. A good idea but a terrible execution. To say that Fallout fans are disappointed in the direction of the franchise under the tutelage of Bethesda is an understatement, however, Fallout: New Vegas is the one game that is universally praised for being a return to the classic roots of the franchise and for being a true classic RPG where choices truly matter and where you can roleplay to your hearts content. As a result of that, New Vegas is heralded as the superior Fallout game and fans have been wanting a sequel since the hit game released over a decade ago.
In recent years, Bethesda has ignored Obsidian and chose a path where all future games were going to be developed in-house but now that Microsoft has full reigns over the franchise, the door is open for a sequel and Obsidian is open to the idea of another Obsidian-led Fallout title. I would gladly take another Obsidian-led Fallout especially in the wake of how Bethesda has treated the franchise with many rewrites, retcons, and overall disrespect to the lore and to the franchise. Allowing Obsidian to take control of a Fallout title would allow the franchise to be relevant in the coming years to come, it’s very possible that Fallout 5 could be seen in 2030 or even 2029 or more years for Bethesda to get around to the game.
If Microsoft allows Obsidian to develop the next entry in the franchise, while Bethesda remains committed to Fallout 76 and their next projects, we could enter a golden era of RPGs where The Elder Scrolls and Fallout release around the same time frame and this would be a huge win for everyone involved. Make it happen, Microsoft! The fans demand it!