Xbox Acquires Fallout: New Vegas, Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic Developer

More RPGs could be on the way to Xbox platforms.

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Now Playing: Crackdown 3 Release Date, Devil May Cry Training Mode, And More From Microsoft's X018 Keynote - GS News Update

Microsoft has announced it will acquire Obsidian Entertainment, developer of role-playing games including Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2, Fallout: New Vegas, South Park: The Stick of Truth, Alpha Protocol, and Pillars of Eternity, among others. The announcement was made during X018, an Xbox fan event that is taking place in Mexico City.

"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," Microsoft said in a statement.

This is one of two acquisitions Microsoft revealed intentions of making during X018. It is also set to acquire inXile Entertainment, the studio behind Wasteland 2, Torment: Tides of Numenera, and The Bard's Tale IV: Barrows Deep. As Microsoft notes itself, these two studios share heritage and develop games in similar genres. The platform holder has said both Obsidian and inXile "will continue to operate autonomously and bring their unique talents, IP, and expertise to Microsoft Studios as they build new RPG experiences for our players and fans."

Microsoft also notes that with these two new studios as part of its family, Microsoft Studios is now made up of "13 distinct and diverse game development teams." During E3 2018, Microsoft confirmed acquisitions of Santa Monica-based The Initiative, a new studio led by Darrell Gallagher, former head of studio for Tomb Raider developer Crystal Dynamics.

Additionally, State of Decay developer Undead Labs, Forza Horizon studio Playground Games, We Happy Few developer Compulsion Games, and Ninja Theory, the British developer of Heavenly Sword, DmC: Devil May Cry, and Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice, were also added to its studio portfolio.

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JSprunk

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Edited By JSprunk

It's all about keeping IP and talent away from Sony, not about making great games.

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Karnage108

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@jsprunk: 2 birds with 1 stone

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sladakrobot

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Edited By sladakrobot

Hope their next game is a success and stays true to their rpg roots(even if its fitted for consoles).

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EricShadow366

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Welp...missed opportunity there Bethesda.

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Cikatriz_ESP

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Edited By Cikatriz_ESP

I’m as skeptical as the next guy, but the more I've read about the studio's mismanagement, low pay, inability to retain talented staff, and general misguidedness of those in the higher ranks, the more I believe this aquisition could be a good thing for Obsidian (or at the very least its employees).

Look up what former employees are saying, including Chris Avellone (one of the company's co-founders). If that sounds like too much work, skim through their reviews on Glassdoor. It should at least be clear their current trajectory wasn’t a very sustainable one: https://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Obsidian-Entertainment-Reviews-E151435.htm

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fraga500

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Rest in Peace.

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Nabinator

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Wow, this is actually pretty big news. I haven't been a big Xbox fan this gen, but this is a huge up for their brand. Obsidian are great. And they treat their teams fairly well from what I hear.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

What a disaster. Microsoft kills just as many studios as EA does and has a rich history of meddling with their development.

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BDRTFM

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@Thanatos2k: You're speaking of the past. Sony was way worse than Microsoft in the past as well. They killed off more studios than they own. Both companies now seem to be taking a more hands off approach to studios, other than insisting on releasing games not quite finished but, what studio doesn't do that these days? These are the days of, release now, fix later.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

@bdrtfm: lol the past, yeah just try and sweep anything under the rug with that excuse.

Also, what does Sony have to do with this? I wouldn't want Sony to buy and ruin PC developers either.

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Barighm

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@Thanatos2k: Um...I gotta disagree with that one. They seem to screw with Japanese studios for some reason, but for NA ones...not so much. They seem to like working with MS, actually. Granted, I'm going on news from this generation. In the past they might have been much worse.

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Thanatos2k

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@Barighm: Almost every indie studio that has worked with Microsoft that is no longer being paid by Microsoft has had horror stories.

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Shin_Gallon

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So much for ever getting another Fallout game on par with New Vegas...

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Barighm

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@Shin_Gallon: There's always New California. Miami looks pretty rad too (pun intended :P).

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Shin_Gallon

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@Barighm: Yeah, I just didn't want to rely on mods to get Fallout experiences that aren't watered down.

But maybe some intrepid modders will take the world map from 76 and do something actually interesting with it, like make it offline, put NPCs and interesting quests in.

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Pupchu

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Bethesda: "Let Microsoft have this developer. So what if they made one of the best Fallout games?! Who cares!! We have Todd Howard!"

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gamingdevil800

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@Pupchu: Honestly I think Zenimax/Bethesda didn't buy Obsidian after New Vegas due to the game not selling as many copies as they expected.

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timothySS10

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@gamingdevil800: if im not mistaken zenimax allrdy try a hostile take over of obsidian, or that was another company. weather im mistaken or not the treated obsidian poorly following new vegas and i don't think they would work with them again.

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gamingdevil800

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@timothyss10: Probably thinking of humanhead studios Prey 2

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timothySS10

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@gamingdevil800: no it most def was a studio that had a game published and released by them

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MisterVulpes

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@gamingdevil800:

I don’t think Obsidian would’ve wanted to go with Bethesda.

1. New Vegas really showed Bethesda up.

2. Bethesda treated them rather badly when sales targets weren’t met.

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gamingdevil800

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@mistervulpes: And Microsoft screwed them over by cancelling their next gen exclusive rpg stormland I believe it was called obviously they just wanted to be bought out.

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MisterVulpes

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@gamingdevil800:

That’s slightly different.

MS has different leadership and new people to work with.

Bethesda does not.

Plus, New Vegas was released and brilliant.

Stormlands sounded awful and was not a good idea. The pitch shouldn’t have even been green lit. Obsidian are not great technicians (something that needs to be addressed going forward).

It was partly executive meddling but part Obsidian not being candid with their employer.

New Vegas on the other hand, was clearly a labour of love, and they got a slap in the face as a reward for a great game.

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timothySS10

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@gamingdevil800: storm land is being made by insomniac, so think ur mistaken on the title. only big name game i can recall micosoft canning was scale bound, but that had to do more with platinum games failings. think they where asking to rebuild the engine for a 4th time after releasing yet another big AAA title, just seemed they wanted to work on other games rather then scale bound, don't blame Microsoft one bit. it probably needed more time in the think tank b4 they started full production.

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gamingdevil800

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@timothyss10: https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2017-09-08-stormlands-and-the-million-man-raid-obsidians-cancelled-xbox-one-exclusive

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timothySS10

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@gamingdevil800: interesting. think this 1 flew under my radar. thanks ^.^ but yes, just take off the S of it (stormland) and its the title of the game i was speaking of b4. lol why i thoght u meant that 1

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Pyrosa

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For the REAL messaging from Feargus himself, here you go:

https://youtu.be/Suvxb0OfhpQ

...and for all the drive-by experts, if you've never run, sold, nor lost a software startup company, you literally have no idea what you're talking about. I've done all three, and I'm on my fourth.

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Grynshock

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@Pyrosa: I’ve done the first one

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BDRTFM

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Edited By BDRTFM

@Pyrosa: If you're on your fourth, maybe you're not much of an expert yourself. :P

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Pyrosa

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@bdrtfm: Incorrect... (My sentence was likely unclear.)

Sold two, lost one, and killing it at the fourth.

(You don't ever stick around long after the sale; you start the next thing. Again, if you've ever started a SW company, you'd understand.)

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BDRTFM

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@Pyrosa: I prefer to start a company and hang on to it. Which is why I've owned the same one for decades now. But, to each their own. There is no rule book for entrepreneurs, you do what works for you.

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MisterVulpes

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@Pyrosa:

Nah, sounds like what shady entrepreneurs do.

Pop-up companies.

Make it just noticeable enough so that big companies deem you buyout worthy rather than deal with a potential competitor in 10 years.

The owner takes the money, starts the process again.

Literally nothing to do with this article.

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Pyrosa

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@mistervulpes: Says someone who has clearly never done anything even closely relevant, let alone built any Intellectual Property like a software product...

Products and IP are meant to be bought and sold. People just develop "feelings" about how they believe the BUSINESS of gaming should be run, like "Mom&Pop can run my fave IP forever, and it's magically cheap and easy."

So yeah; after 30 years of doing it (about the same as Feargus), I know a lot about it, and it's all relevant.

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MisterVulpes

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@Pyrosa:

If you say so, partner.

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Zyxex

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No more games on Steam from this dev. RIP.

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deactivated-5c56012aaa167

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Makes me feel that Microsoft might try to sign an exclusivity deal with Disney for exclusive Star Wars games.(And if they succeed they will publish a Kotor game with Obsidian as the developer)

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shadowwarrior4

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@dorog1995: sorry bro ea is bending over for D before ms they got a tight grip on star wars games and are never letting go, think sony with spider man

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Pyrosa

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@dorog1995: Derp... EA has the SW license for several more years.

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gamingdevil800

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Edited By gamingdevil800

@Pyrosa: I think it's till 2024 or 2025? 2013 was when the 10 year deal was announced anyway. I can only hope they don't continue the exclusivity deal and allow anyone to approach them with pitches... Plus I think Obsidian actually still has a publishing deal with Take Two for whatever game they are developing atm.

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kanekan-slaugh

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@gamingdevil800: While it's true, Disney is apparently thinking about cancelling their exclusive developer deal (mainly from the public berating of their games). So hopefully that happens.

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Barighm

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@gamingdevil800: Hopefully, it technically began when EA began development of Battlefront, so it could even be as early as 2012 or 11!!

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gamingdevil800

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Edited By gamingdevil800

@Barighm: We can only hope, Disney will probably do something stupid though like renewing the deal or giving it to Ubisoft lol. Then again a Star Wars game with the For Honor combat could be amazing.

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BDRTFM

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That's a heck of a catch. They are pretty hands off when it comes to Mojang so hopefully they will treat Obsidian the same.

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Barighm

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@bdrtfm: Mojang was an absolute buyout.

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Thanatos2k

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@bdrtfm: Mojang also hasn't really made anything else, so........

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kanekan-slaugh

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@Thanatos2k: They've been updating the same game monthly for years so.....

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BDRTFM

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Edited By BDRTFM

@Thanatos2k: They are the developers of the 2nd best selling game in history. It's all they need to make. When it starts losing money, let me know.

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Thanatos2k

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@bdrtfm: Buying a developer so they can just maintain one game seems like a monstrous waste. It implies a complete lack of confidence in their ability to make more quality products.

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BDRTFM

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@Thanatos2k: That makes no sense. The game is a cash cow. When you have a cash cow, you love it, feed it, pet it and encourage it to grow. You don't say, well that was fun, let's try something else now instead. When the game no longer requires the entire Mojang team, I'm sure they will get onto the game they've been playing around with. Right now, Minecraft is putting large amounts of food on everyone's table.