Microsoft went to great lengths to ensure that there were games for the all-new Xbox platform that the company first announced at CES in 2001.
This platform marked the entry of the software giant for the first time in the field of gaming platforms.
While the company has appealed to third-party developers to develop games for the Xbox, the software giant has also considered using its large financial power to buy developers.
“Microsoft was ridiculed for offering to buy Nintendo during the meeting,” says (Kevin Bachus), director of external relations for the Xbox Project.
Microsoft’s proposition made some sense, as Nintendo at the time was producing inferior hardware and lagging behind Sony in a hardware perspective.
Microsoft thought it might take over the hardware production and leave Nintendo to focus on building games.
“We wanted Nintendo to work with us in January 2000 through the details of the joint venture, as we provided them with all the technical specifications for the Xbox,” said (Bob Mcbreen), Xbox Business Development Director.
Microsoft’s presentation indicated that Nintendo devices are bad compared to Sony’s PlayStation, but Nintendo has a clear advantage in the field of games and can focus on this area and leave Microsoft to produce the devices.
Microsoft could not buy Nintendo, whose devices are still weak to this day compared to Sony and Microsoft, but they have mastered the art of creating compelling video games for the platforms.
Nintendo has demonstrated that high-powered hardware is not what is needed to make great games, a lesson that continues to emerge across the entire gaming community.
While this offering is certainly the most notable of Microsoft’s failed acquisitions, there have been a few other notable developers who have gone through the company’s initiatives.
Electronic Arts was the first company Microsoft contacted, but it turned down the offer, and Microsoft also met with Square (now known as Square Enix) and developer Mortal Kombat Midway.
One of the acquisitions made by Microsoft gave a major franchise to Xbox from day one.
Bungie was at the time a little-known game development company, but Halo: Combat Evolved arrived with the first Xbox in November of 2001 and was met with immediate acclaim.
Halo: Combat Evolved gave the Xbox an instant competitive edge and helped it carve out a large portion of the gaming market, despite the dominance of Sony and Nintendo at the time.