One of many greatest online game information tales of 2020 was Microsoft’s acquisition of ZeniMax Media. This large acquisition will see Microsoft not solely achieve ZeniMax Media and its large studios like Bethesda, however it’ll additionally give the corporate management over a number of the business’s greatest franchises, like Doom, Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, and Wolfenstein, amongst others.
Microsoft’s acquisition of ZeniMax Media has but to undergo, however it’s anticipated to occur quickly. Within the meantime, dependable sources have steered that Microsoft has one other Bethesda-level acquisition deliberate for this yr, although it stays to be seen what precisely that acquisition could also be.
Whereas there are a lot of totally different corporations Microsoft might contemplate buying to assist strengthen its Xbox model, one studio it might wish to contemplate is Koei Tecmo, and there are a number of totally different the explanation why that’s.
Koei Tecmo studio Workforce Ninja has lengthy had an affiliation with the Xbox model, and has helped develop plenty of Xbox unique video games for the writer. This consists of plenty of video games within the Useless or Alive combating sport sequence in addition to its spinoffs, and most of the Ninja Gaiden reboot video games have been timed-Xbox exclusives earlier than coming to different platforms. More moderen years have seen Workforce Ninja as an alternative develop video games solely for the Nintendo Swap and PlayStation consoles, however it nonetheless has extra exclusives on Xbox than every other platform.
If Xbox have been to accumulate Koei Tecmo, it might carry Workforce Ninja below its umbrella, and that will be an enormous “get” for the corporate, for positive. This is able to in flip give Xbox management of the Useless or Alive and Ninja Gaiden franchises, to not point out the common Nioh video games, which have but to launch on any Xbox platform. Equally to how Xbox’s acquisition of ZeniMax Media was primarily notable for together with ZeniMax subsidiary Bethesda, buying Koei Tecmo could be notable for together with Workforce Ninja, its expertise, and the IP related to the studio.
One of many predominant the explanation why Xbox would purchase any given studio is to safe its IP for Xbox consoles. Xbox has overtly launched a few of its first-party video games on different platforms and can doubtless proceed doing so with a few of its future acquisitions, however it’s been stated that these video games will both be on Xbox first, or the Xbox variations might be superior. A Koei Tecmo acquisition may safe many extra excessive profile IP for the Xbox model, together with some IP that has lengthy been related to Xbox anyway.
This consists of IP just like the aforementioned Useless or Alive and Ninja Gaiden video games. As beforehand talked about, quite a few Useless or Alive combating video games have been Xbox exclusives, and it is only in the near past that the video games have been making their strategy to different platforms as nicely. The Ninja Gaiden video games, in the meantime, have usually launched on Xbox first, solely to come back to different consoles a bit afterward down the street.
One other large IP that Xbox may get hold of via a Koei Tecmo acquisition is Dynasty Warriors. The musou motion video games have a devoted fanbase that has satisfied Koei Tecmo to launch new Dynasty Warriors video games frequently. Plus, Dynasty Warriors developer Omega Power might be an enormous boon for Xbox as nicely, with the studio placing out higher-rated video games on a extra constant foundation lately.
Xbox has struggled to interrupt into the Japanese gaming marketplace for years, however it’s not for lack of making an attempt. Whereas the unique Xbox did not have a giant presence in Japan, Microsoft went large within the area with the Xbox 360, securing unique offers for main video games aimed toward Japanese audiences, like Blue Dragon and Misplaced Odyssey. Regardless of the critical-acclaim a few of these Japan-focused video games earned, they did not actually assist Microsoft or Xbox break into the Japanese gaming market like they’d hope, and to today, it is nonetheless dominated by Sony and Nintendo.
Nevertheless, there are rumors that Xbox has been speaking to Japanese corporations as a part of a renewed effort to develop its model within the area. Buying a serious Japanese firm like Koei Tecmo may develop Xbox’s Japanese viewers in a single day, and provides it a a lot bigger foothold within the area. There are different Japanese corporations that Xbox may purchase as an alternative, however it appears Koei Tecmo would give Microsoft the largest bang for its buck.
Lately, Ninja Gaiden reboot director Tomonobu Itagaki created a brand new studio known as Itagaki Video games. Not solely that, however Itagaki has expressed a need to as soon as once more work with Microsoft, which might make sense, as Itagaki performed a key function in creating a lot of Workforce Ninja’s Xbox-exclusive video games previously.
Itagaki’s observe document speaks for itself, having directed the Xbox 360 launch title Useless or Alive 4 in addition to the Ninja Gaiden reboot and 2008’s Ninja Gaiden 2. Itagaki most not too long ago served as an advisor for Samurai Jack: Battle By way of Time, which earned considerably optimistic opinions, however the final sport he directed was the critically-panned Satan’s Third. Whereas Satan’s Third wasn’t well-received, the overwhelming majority of Itagaki’s work has earned important acclaim, and it is fairly doubtless that he could be a robust asset for Xbox rising its model in Japan.
If Xbox have been to accumulate Koei Tecmo, it might get management of the Ninja Gaiden IP, which may theoretically be lent to Itagaki Video games. Workforce Ninja shouldn’t be engaged on a brand new Ninja Gaiden sport, however the IP has been dormant for thus lengthy that it might be a disgrace to maintain it mendacity.