Xbox Game Studios is Now the New Brand Name for Microsoft Studios

The name "Microsoft Studios" is no more, with the division rebranding itself to Xbox Game Studios after numerous studio acquisitions.

February 5, 2019

In case you haven’t noticed, Microsoft’s Xbox division is dead serious about game development as of late. After acquiring numerous other game studios, what was once known as “Microsoft Studios” will be known as Xbox Game Studios moving forward. The announcement came through Xbox Wire during a new Inside Xbox presentation.

As Corporate Vice President of the newly-minted Xbox Game Studios Matt Booty writes:

At Xbox, we believe when everyone plays, we all win. It’s why we’re passionate about building a portfolio of games for players across console, PC and mobile. As we’ve expanded our focus beyond the console, the Xbox brand has also evolved from its original roots. Today, Xbox is our gaming brand across all devices, no matter how or where you want to play, or who you want to play with.

The thirteen studios that comprise this division, responsible for franchises such as Age of EmpiresForzaGears of War, Halo and Minecraft, include:

  • 343 Industries
  • The Coalition
  • Compulsion Games
  • The Initiative
  • InXile Entertainment
  • Minecraft
  • Ninja Theory
  • Obsidian Entertainment
  • Playground Games
  • Rare
  • Turn 10 Studios
  • Undead Labs
  • Microsoft’s Global Publishing group

Microsoft still has a number of titles to offer in 2019, including the long-delayed Crackdown 3, and sequels like Gears 5 and Ori and the Will of the Wisps. Meanwhile, support will continue for long-running games such as Minecraft, Forza Horizon 4, and Sea of Thieves.

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The name change may not mean much to consumers other than a different logo on box art but it does signal a huge commitment from Microsoft’s Xbox division. After missteps in the early Xbox One era, and with a new console generation expected to sneak up on us soon, Microsoft likely wants to let its fans know that they are attempting to stand next to (perhaps above) main competitors Sony and Nintendo in providing first-party titles.

In terms of future hardware, Microsoft is already reported to be working on two new consoles, codenamed “Lockhart” and “Anaconda.” On the online end of things, and in the spirit of Microsoft wanting to expand to other platforms beyond consoles, the company is said to be bringing support for Xbox Live not just to mobile devices, but even the Nintendo Switch.

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Chris Compendio

Chris is a writer currently based in the Philadelphia area. They are currently writing for film website Flixist, podcasting for Marvel News Desk, and were an editorial intern for Paste Magazine's gaming section. They graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a creative writing major.

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