Microsoft are looking to expand their footprint in Japan once again after a disastrous Xbox One generation, and a big acquisition of a Japanese publisher or developer could help them with that.
Microsoft are reportedly in talks with big Japanese publishers but also smaller development studios over potential acquisitions claims games industry journalist Imran Khan in the Giant Bombcast episode 756 .
"[Microsoft] talked with major Japanese publishers about acquisitions," Khan said. "I can't speak on how far those conversations got but they are very clearly interested in some Japanese publishers and smaller studios."
Khan argues that Xbox Game Pass will come to a point where licencing costs will be so high that it makes more sense for Microsoft to simply buy the studio or publisher and all their IPs. He also adds that Phil Spencer's recent comments on acquisitions are not random and that the company certainly has plans in mind on where to go next in terms of buying more studios.
Reliable industry journalist and insider Jeff Grubb added that Microsoft will look to team up with more Japanese developers following their partnership with Kojima Productions . He speculates that it's been Microsoft's long-term plan was to strike a deal of such a magnitude and then invite other Japanese publishers and developers to make the games they want to make with Xbox .
It's one hell of a plan but whether or not it works out for Microsoft, time will tell. The company have certainly started this generation much better and are showing that they indeed care about the Japanese market. Xbox Series X|S consoles also outsold Xbox One in Japan back in November 2021, which certainly is an impressive feat.
Microsoft will also continue to bring more Japanese games to Xbox Game Pass, with Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty being one of them.
All in all, it's going to be a very interesting generation for Xbox in Japan, which is of course great for the competition and ultimately, us, the players.
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