Leaked court documents show Xbox aspired to acquire Nintendo, Valve

I like to dream too.

Xbox Phil Spencer acquire

One of the most amusing takeaways from Microsoft’s leaked court documents is their hopes for further acquisitions. They’re a bit pie in the sky, to say the least.

Like quite a few aspiring cyberpunk megacorporations, Microsoft has been scooping up whatever companies it can to bolster its gaming division and gain an advantage over its competitors. This ran into a snag with trying to acquire Activision Blizzard, as some lawmakers have raised an eyebrow at what seems to be a growing monopoly. That purchase may be inevitable, but leaked documents show that it wasn’t Microsoft’s biggest ambition.

In a leaked 2020 email (preserved by Resetera), around the time they bought Zenimax, Phil Spencer discussed Microsoft’s hopes to buy Nintendo, Valve, and Warner Bros.’ game division. This doesn’t really suggest they came close to any of these purchases, merely that they had the go-ahead to seek the opportunity. It discusses buying shares of Nintendo, and the issues around the potential deal with WB.

“They of course have to be willing to sell… and they have to see us as a top company to sell to,” replied Chris Capossela. Wow, that certainly does seem obvious. I would hope Phil Spencer doesn’t need someone to explain that to him.

High apple pie in the sky hopes

“At some point, getting Nintendo would be a career moment, and I honestly believe a good move for both companies,” Phil stated at the end of his email. Sure, Phil. Sure.

This isn’t the first time Microsoft had its eyes on acquiring Nintendo. Back when they first decided to get into the console market, they apparently approached Nintendo in hopes of acquiring them. It didn’t go well. According to Kevin Bacchus, former director of third-party relations, “Like, imagine an hour of somebody just laughing at you. That was kind of how that meeting went.”

I don’t think much has changed for Nintendo since then. They’re still in a pretty solid position and have made no indication that they’d be willing to sell to any other party. However, I would love to see Phil Spencer have the experience of being laughed at in a boardroom.

There’s no information to suggest that Microsoft is still pursuing such acquisitions. While I certainly wasn’t expecting them to acquire Activision Blizzard, considering the issues they’re having pushing that acquisition through, I doubt that lawmakers would be receptive to Microsoft purchasing one of their biggest competitors. The idea of it is almost laughable.

About The Author
Zoey Handley
Staff Writer - Zoey is a gaming gadabout. She got her start blogging with the community in 2018 and hit the front page soon after. Normally found exploring indie experiments and retro libraries, she does her best to remain chronically uncool.
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