Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2 should probably be added to the list of Microsoft games that could come to PS5. That's what Nick Baker, one of the founders of XboxEra, says, who supplemented his site's reports with this information (via X).
Not only Hi-Fi Rush and Sea of Thieves can be released on Sony consoles. XboxEra claims that Microsoft is also considering porting Starfield to PlayStation 5.
According to editorial sources, the company plans to release Bethesda's space RPG after the release of the Shattered Space expansion on PC and Xbox Series X/S. The expansion still doesn't have an official release date, but it should be released this year. Microsoft was even supposed to invest extra money in PS5 developer kits.
Will Starfield and Indiana Jones hit PS5?
XboxEra news had a big impact on the industry, causing diverse reactions. The service reports that not all Microsoft employees who are informed about these multiplatform plans agree with them, and similar feelings are present not only among regular players but also among industry journalists.
NateTheHate, a YouTuber known for, among other things, a leak about the remake of Silent Hill 2 from the Polish studio Bloober Team, is said to have obtained similar information. He didn't add much of himself, unlike another YouTube insider.
According to Xcloud Timdog, the sales of Xbox hardware (mainly XSX/S consoles) fell below Microsoft's expectations and "alarmed" the Vice President of Finance and Operations (i.e., Tim Stuart). However, the leak regarding Starfield is allegedly owed to... an employee opposed to these plans, who hoped to cause a storm on the Internet and thus dissuade the company from these ideas (via IdleSloth).
In turn, Tom Warren from The Verge received information that a new Indiana Jones game from Bethesda would also be released on PlayStation 5. Nevertheless, the journalist added that considering the release of that and other games on PS5 does not mean that these plans will be implemented, but it shows a shift in Microsoft's strategy.
Microsoft as a "mega publisher," not a console developer
Although there are plenty of people surprised and irritated by these rumors, they really shouldn't be a big surprise. Already in 2020, Phil Spencer assured that future Bethesda games could be released on competitive platforms, but this would be considered separately for each of them. In addition, the head of Xbox has repeatedly pointed to "Play Anywhere" as one of the pillars of the brand's strategy for the coming years, despite subsequent information regarding exclusive titles.
As we have already mentioned, Xcloud Timdog reported too low sales of Xbox Series X/S, despite significant price drops in some regions. According to the insider, Game Pass is also "unprofitable" (despite Spencer's recent assurances) and the current "market" is not enough to cover the costs of running this service. That's why we won't see the Call of Duty series in its offer - Microsoft wants Activision's flagship series to quickly recoup the cost of the publisher's purchase investment.
In this context, analyst Benji-Sales points out (via X), that Microsoft apparently wants to become a "mega-publisher", which additionally sells consoles as an "access point" to its store and Game Pass. In other words, the success of Xbox as a device would no longer be crucial for the giant from Redmond, which could be confirmed by leaks regarding the release of a "digital-only" console.
The internet user also points out that Satya Nadella, the current CEO of Microsoft, perceives his company as based on "services" (which is not surprising, as he himself oversaw the development of the cloud services among other things). So from his point of view, the game exclusivity policies seem bizarre and the company should focus on multiplatform releases.
Xbox hoists a white flag?
The separate issue remains whether such a development direction will actually be beneficial for Microsoft. The success of the Switch (and to some extent the loss of Xbox to Sony in two generations) seems to show that the game catalog still matters a lot to buyers.
In this context, some players are wondering whether purchasing another Xbox will make more sense. In turn, Jez Corden from Windows Central jokes that Microsoft consoles will be used for "beta-testing" games before their release on Sony platforms. Nevertheless, there are also people who believe that Microsoft's decision is "sensible," at least for financial reasons (via website X).
On a side note: Xcloud Timdog recalled rumors about a "crazy" Microsoft presentation full of games that the company is preparing for gamers. However, he immediately added that they may have some reservations about this show.