It still takes money though
With the Xbox One a few weeks away, one doesn't have to dig too deep into Microsoft's launch library to see that killer exclusives don't all have to be developed in-house. Speaking on an IGN podcast, Microsoft Studios' Phil Spencer reaffirmed his opinion that owning studios doesn't directly correlate to great exclusive titles; citing his company's previous relationship with Epic Games and the Gears of War series.
"I lived through the Xbox 360 generation and we had a great relationship with Epic, and we built Gears of War, and really that franchise was born on the Xbox 360 and hit incredible heights on the Xbox 360. And whether we owned Epic or simply worked with Epic was not part of the conversation [about whether] that game was going to be great."
Dead Rising 3, Ryse, and Killer Instinct are three of the Xbox One's highest profile launch titles and are all developed by third party studios. While the console manufacture strategies have shifted greatly since releasing Bungie, one constat still remains: it sure does take a lot of money to lock up exclusivity rights.