As of late, Microsoft have bought up countless mid-size game studios, culminating recently in the acquisition of big lad ZeniMax in September. Even still, they hungered for more, and now it looks like they’re after a Japanese studio to gobble up.
Update: Xbox boss Phil Spencer has since semi-denied this. “I don’t think so… I mean, I’m not in every meeting that every team has, but I’ll say not from me,” he told GameSpot.
According to a report by Bloomberg, several Japan-based game developers “from small to big” said Microsoft had approached them about buying their businesses. No studios have been named as these talks were held in private, but it seems like a deal hasn’t been struck yet.
Jeremy Hinton, head of Xbox operations in Asia, said that Microsoft’s focus with this acquisition isn’t just on console sales, they also want to attract more people over to their Game Pass Ultimate subscription service.
The report also states that while Japan’s videogame market isn’t as large as China and the U.S, it’s still the biggest based on per-capita spending. Money does indeed, talk.
Historically, Microsoft have had a pretty torrid time in Japan, though. You only have to glance at Famitsu’s weekly estimated hardware sales charts to see Xbox sitting at the bottom practically every time.
I suppose nabbing a Japanese game studio would help, although it’ll take a long while before Microsoft can prise Sony and Nintendo’s grip off the market. But who will they snap up? Sega? FromSoftware?! Square Enix?!! Let the speculation commence.