One of the biggest news stories in gaming last year was that Microsoft had acquired ZeniMax Media as one of its many video game acquisitions over the past few years, giving it control of the company and all of its studios. Now, the Microsoft ZeniMax deal has finally been approved.
The deal was approved by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, a government body in the United States intended to stop market manipulation. After a review process, the Commission today issued a notice of effectiveness, which meant the acquisition could go ahead.
The deal between Microsoft and ZeniMax means that Microsoft will gain control of ZeniMax and all of its affiliated studios, including Bethesda, Id Software, Machine Games, and Arkane Studios. However, the company has still said that they don’t intend to make the studios’ products exclusive to Xbox consoles.
The only body like the US SEC that still has to certify the Microsoft ZeniMax deal is the European Commission, though it’s expected to give out its decision later today. With both of these commissions giving the go-ahead, Microsoft can probably complete the acquisition by June, if not sooner.
Many gamers believe that the deal could be a good thing for Bethesda games, especially considering the recent poor performance of Fallout 76. With Bethesda having two other high-profile games on the way, their upcoming science-fiction game Starfield and The Elder Scrolls 6, it might do good for them to have someone watching over them.
We do know that Bethesda boss Todd Howard is excited about the acquisition, mainly because it was thanks to Microsoft giving The Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind a chance on the Xbox that the series has grown into one of gaming’s biggest.
Though it will likely be a while before we can see the fruits of the Microsoft ZeniMax deal, hopefully it will be a partnership that will end up turning out great things.