Microsoft spares the gaming world with record ZeniMax Media purchase

Published on : 23/09/2020 – 07:52

The buyout has caused a stir in the video game world this week. The American software giant Microsoft has taken over ZeniMax Media, the parent company of Bethesda Softworks. In other words, for laymen, it acquires some of the most prestigious development studios in the industry with successful titles like The Elder Scrolls or Fall Out, which have sold millions of copies on console and PC. Importantly, the deal is expected to amount to $ 7.5 billion. This is the second largest operation in the history of video games, a sector that is not experiencing the crisis.

The sector does not know the crisis, at least at this level of the industry, that which one calls “Triple AAA”, where the budgets of development of the plays like the figures of sales are close to the tops. It’s a crazy year for video games, thanks to the confinement that has affected a large part of the planet. Sales of games and consoles soared this spring. And this only concerns one category of the population. Men, women, young and old, everyone has discovered or rediscovered video games. This translated almost instantly into sales. Microsoft, but also Sony and Nintendo have seen their revenues explode compared to the same time last year. Nintendo’s “Switch” console has more than doubled its sales, in particular thanks to the success of the game Animal Crossing, the confinement game for many families in the West.

The end of the year promises to be full of promise for the sector

Fall is the prime season for the industry. Since Tuesday, it is possible to pre-order its new generation game console: an Xbox or a Playstation, the machines produced respectively by the American Microsoft and the Japanese Sony. It is therefore anything but a coincidence that the takeover of Bethesda by Microsoft was announced the day before. It is a giant advertisement to encourage people to lean for the Xbox. In particular, subscribe to its “Xbox Game Pass” platform, which already has 15 million subscribers. Like Netflix, it offers a catalog of games, for $ 10 per month to enjoy on console, PC, or even on your smartphone.

As with physical consoles, competition from the “ cloud gaming »Is fierce

Go from a game started on console before switching to your phone, in a dematerialized way, this game revolution is already underway. The share of digital in sales exploded during the confinement period. And Sony, Microsoft’s number one competitor, has a head start because it has already been offering its “cloud gaming” offer since 2014. From a technological point of view, industry experts agree that it is increasingly difficult to stand out with the technologies of home consoles. The whole challenge is to attract the player with a constantly updated catalog. Failing to have been able to seize this month of TikTok, the favorite social network of the under 25s, Microsoft consoles itself by catching up on its historical delay over the competitor Sony in terms of game offers, in a sector that will have generated last year 130 billion dollars.

► In short

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