Microsoft and Activision Blizzard's initial court responses to the FTC Lawsuit have been published today (as we've highlighted elsewhere on Pure Xbox) and as part of this, Microsoft mentions that three upcoming ZeniMax (Bethesda) games are anticipated to become Xbox and PC exclusives at launch.
The company mentions this when explaining why Call of Duty won't become an exclusive, pointing out that these three upcoming Bethesda titles are "designed to be played primarily alone or in small groups".
"The Complaint’s reference to Microsoft’s recent acquisition of ZeniMax—a set of gaming studios acquired in 2020—has no relevance to the current transaction. After that transaction closed, ZeniMax’s first two new games were made exclusive to PlayStation for one year post-launch. Xbox anticipates that three future titles — [REDACTED] — all of which are designed to be played primarily alone or in small groups—will be exclusive to Xbox and PCs.
But consistent with its historic approach, Xbox has continued to release new updates of existing ZeniMax games such as Fallout 76 and Elder Scrolls Online on both Xbox and PlayStation, because these games are designed to be played together by broad communities of gamers on different platforms. This last set of games is the one most analogous to Call of Duty. So the ZeniMax experience cuts against the idea that Xbox would make that game exclusive."
As you can see, the actual names of the games are blanked out in the public version of the document, although we'd take a guess that they're probably Starfield, Redfall and the upcoming Indiana Jones game. There's a chance it could be Elder Scrolls 6 or something else entirely, but the Indy game seems most probable to us.
None of this is particularly surprising, of course, especially in terms of Starfield and Redfall which were already confirmed as Xbox exclusives, but that third title does leave a bit of room for debate. What do you think it is?