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FTC Wants More Information About Microsoft's Future ZeniMax Exclusivity And Its 10-Year Deals

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I think this is an interesting position because even if Microsoft promised to make all future games from Zenimax multiplatform, things change. I'm not sure that writing out your future intentions about something you own/would own to the FTC, qualifies as legally binding the same way a court order would.

Secondly Microsoft has already signed a number of 10 year contracts with various companies in the gaming industry in regards to making Call of Duty multiplatform, whereas before with Zenimax, I'm not sure any contracts where signed regarding multiplatform agreements for future games.

Maybe this is all a show by the FTC to let other companies know that more regulation is here to stay in the current environment. But the larger question I have is, is it a good idea for a regulatory agency to have so much sway, to tell a private business(even though publicly traded) that they have to do something a certain way, GUARANTEED for x amount of years, regardless of changing market conditions?

In the video game industry the price of new games have risen $10, Xbox's competitors seem to be outselling them in a key market(united states) and new first party titles have been delayed. This would have a number of consequences, like 3rd party developers not prioritizing performance on your console or skipping it completely to focus on maximizing sales on another. Would it be wise for Xbox to still make Zenimax games multiplatform while your own platform is deprived of content from competitors? For a company that is not the market leader in the video game industry it seems like a high standard to hold them to.

Are we now to scrutinize them because of a possible future outcome where they are the market leader? That's a bit unfair, and its exactly the kind of thing that prevents a developing industry from maturing.


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