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Obsidian Entertainment and inXile Entertainment have officially joined Microsoft

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Some rather interesting news here, both Obsidian Entertainment and inXile Entertainment (source) have now officially joined Microsoft.

Together, they've made some pretty interesting Linux games such as Pillars of Eternity, Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, Tyranny, Wasteland 2, Torment: Tides of Numenera, The Bard's Tale IV: Barrows Deep and more to come.

Microsoft have been picking up quite a number of studios lately including Ninja theory, Compulsion Games, Undead Labs and also Playground Games so they're continuing to bolster their forces. They're facing huge competition in the console market, so it's likely to help with that more than anything.

News that I am sure will shock some Linux gamers, that's two pretty big studios that have been putting out games for Linux now under the roof of Microsoft. That's a little worrying, but it doesn't mean they will suddenly stop having Linux ports of their games. However, it does make Linux ports of their games slightly less likely I would think. As long as both studios retain a certain amount of freedom, I think we should be okay for future titles. Microsoft loves Linux after all…right?

I have to be honest, I'm a little in shock myself at this news.

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110 comments
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Whitewolfe80 11 November 2018 at 10:52 am UTC
slaapliedje
DedaleOne thing is not overly clear to me: do they own Neverwinter Nights too ?

Nope, Neverwinter Nights was developed by Bioware / Published by "Atari" and now being done by Beamdog (Enhanced Edition). Obsidian did the 2nd one. Just like they did the 2nd Knights of the Old Repulic.

I feel saddest for Brian Fargo. He started inXile after Interplay went bust so that he could make his own games again. Granted I am sure MS gave him a hefty paycheck, so I don't feel too bad for the guy...

Who do you think negotiated the deal it was Brian Fargo getting paid
Eike 11 November 2018 at 10:54 am UTC
CestarianThis is a strange move, these companies predominantly make PC games that simply wouldn't work as well on console, they can't be buying them to make xbox exclusives, asking them to make xbox exclusives would be like asking a man to dance on one leg. These companies also only make games that wouldn't benefit at all from using apis like dx12 or vulkan, they're just not that graphically intense.

I'm not seeing their plan here, I'm not seeing a lot of their plans these days and it makes me a little nervous.

Pure speculation ahead: If I had about infinite resources and wanted to rival Bethesda, but CDPR isn't for sale, I'd buy some third person 3D company(s) and some RPG company(s), dumb down the RPG part to the max, and voilà... an exclusive DX12 3D RPG - and great RPG developer talents wasted to the max.
Whitewolfe80 11 November 2018 at 10:55 am UTC
Nevertheless
Eike
tuubiI don't get all these doomsday attitudes. We probably won't see any more games from these developers on our platform (which certainly makes me sad as a fan), but that's all this means.

With Larian not Porting Divinity 2, that's basically a whole genre (classic CRPGs) gone, no?

With Proton there is just a few games / developers behind walled gardens. The boundaries become more and more not technical.

Well yes and no not having native ports is a big problem because its valve they get white knighted and true they have helped linux because it helps them have an alternative to windows if MS decide to make it difficult to work on windows. Proton is funded by valve and valve does have a patience meter just look at steam machines gone no marketing no mention of them on steam store anymore steam link failed barely mentioned and sold for under a pound last two steam sales. Valve have money and resources but they seem to have a very limited amount of patience.
Whitewolfe80 11 November 2018 at 11:00 am UTC
mortigarSo much for wasteland 3.
Be curious to see if their comments on keeping their Kick starter commitments will be honored when it is all said and done.

Wasteland 3 will get made it will now be a fps with multiplayer and battle royale mode with moba dlc because thats the new hotness Ms will end up chasing trends just like Activision blizzard and EA
Blauer_Hunger 11 November 2018 at 11:14 am UTC
And we still have no way to run UWP apps without Windows …
Appelsin 11 November 2018 at 11:15 am UTC
Bad news indeed.

It's really a shame — no strike that — it's actually just sad the way these large companies go around buying out all the smaller studios, only to ruin them with Big Gaming's sole focus on chasing the current fad to milk the hype. If their new Overlords don't destroy the games outright with ingame currencies (fee2pay) and all the other en vogue "features", I see it as 99% certain that Pillars of Eternity 3 will be a Windows Store Exclusive, and certainly riddled with DX12.

QuoteAs long as both studios retain a certain amount of freedom, I think we should be okay for future titles.

I suspect they retain their freedom under Microsoft, just like Bioware retained freedom under EA ;)


Again, I would be happy to be proven wrong in my cynicism.


Last edited by Appelsin at 12 November 2018 at 11:31 am UTC
Cestarian 11 November 2018 at 11:15 am UTC
TheRiddickRip Linux Gaming.

MS might love linux but they want %100 of gamers on MS Platform... two very different things. Watch as Linux ports get pulled and a LAME excuse used.

I've said this before somewhere around here, but not all microsoft published games are windows exclusive. There are games with linux support published by M$.
Nevertheless 11 November 2018 at 11:19 am UTC
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Whitewolfe80
Nevertheless
Eike
tuubiI don't get all these doomsday attitudes. We probably won't see any more games from these developers on our platform (which certainly makes me sad as a fan), but that's all this means.

With Larian not Porting Divinity 2, that's basically a whole genre (classic CRPGs) gone, no?

With Proton there is just a few games / developers behind walled gardens. The boundaries become more and more not technical.

Well yes and no not having native ports is a big problem because its valve they get white knighted and true they have helped linux because it helps them have an alternative to windows if MS decide to make it difficult to work on windows. Proton is funded by valve and valve does have a patience meter just look at steam machines gone no marketing no mention of them on steam store anymore steam link failed barely mentioned and sold for under a pound last two steam sales. Valve have money and resources but they seem to have a very limited amount of patience.

By closing down Windows MS threatens Valves busyness foundations. So there is two possible ways for Valve to act:
1. Become part of the MS store.
2. Find another open OS base.

I think what Valve does, and did for the past few years, is a very long term enterprise. They never shifted from it, as we can see when we look at Proton. They need Linux, and I think they understood Linux needs more users to be attractive to developers. With the visibility of their strategie they naturally reinforced MS on their strategy. So I guess it's no wonder we see a lot of movement these days:

- Proton makes games playable we never dreamed of.
- Proton makes developers ditch native versions.
- Linux userbase might (hopefully) rise because people that wanted to change to Linux get to play more of their Steam libs on Linux.
- MS might try to deny more games on Linux.
- MS suddenly loves Linux (where it's useful to them).

What we won't see, I think, is Valve stopping what they do.

So from my perspective: F*ck inXile and Obsidian and move on.


Last edited by Nevertheless at 11 November 2018 at 11:20 am UTC
Nevertheless 11 November 2018 at 11:27 am UTC
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Eike
tuubiI don't get all these doomsday attitudes. We probably won't see any more games from these developers on our platform (which certainly makes me sad as a fan), but that's all this means.

With Larian not Porting Divinity 2, that's basically a whole genre (classic CRPGs) gone, no?

Hey, there is Pathfinder: Kingmaker! It really feels great! I'm just waiting for the 1.1 version to start over.
Tchey 11 November 2018 at 11:29 am UTC
At the end, i wonder, who between Disney and Microsoft will by the other one ?

I'd like to prepare, should i wear squares or circles, with my forced smile ?

Gaming on Linux (not this website, the act of gaming...) is a "small issue" for me, the big one being that more and more giants are eating the smaller people.
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