Microsoft took to the stage in Mexico City for X018 today, announcing plenty of exciting news like a discounted Game Pass and long-awaited console support for mouse and keyboard. Perhaps the biggest news, however, was that Microsoft has now officially acquired Obsidian Entertainment. Rumors about the potential acquisition have been stirring since October, but no conclusive leaks managed to pour out from Microsoft ahead of the big announcement - and it's one that adds some serious RPG firepower to Microsoft's docket.
Obsidian Entertainment has a history of producing top-tier roleplaying games, with titles like South Park: The Stick of Truth, Fallout: New Vegas, and Pillars of Eternity being the most prominent examples. The studio was founded in 2003, with many of the starting staff already having a background in RPG games like Fallout 2 and Neverwinter Nights. It's not clear what the acquisition means in terms of Obsidian's next project, but it goes without saying that Microsoft has plenty of intellectual properties that would prove to be enticing to most gamers.
Microsoft's own comments about the acquisition suggests that the studio will retain its focus on developing RPG games:
As one of the industry’s premiere RPG developers, we couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity to add their expertise to Microsoft Studios, while enabling the studio to preserve its unique culture and build on its talent and vision to fully realize their creative ambitions.
Obsidian Entertainment isn't the only RPG specialist studio acquisition announced by Microsoft today, either: InXile Entertainment has also joined Microsoft's ranks. The studio revived both the Wasteland and Torment series, with the studio also confirming that Wasteland 3 will remain a multiplatform release as was previously promised. In any event, Microsoft has made some large moves to add some serious firepower to its ability to craft Windows and Xbox exclusive roleplaying games, though only time will what fruits grow from today's news.
Xbox sales have consistently lagged behind PlayStation sales in the current generation, and a strong lineup of console exclusives for the PS4 may be one of the main reasons. Obsidian Entertainment and InXile Entertainment certainly have a depth of talent available to them, and it'll be exciting to see how Microsoft uses the studios going forward - for both this console generation and the next.