Microsoft has recently been attempting to expand the library of studios held under their banner. The company announced in September that they were to acquire ZeniMAx Media, along with its game publisher Bethesda Studios, in deal worth $7.5 billion. Whilst concerns were raised regarding exclusivity of high profile franchises lying under the Bethesda banner, the deal was certainly one of the highest profile purchases in video game history and highlighted the intent of Xbox and Microsoft for this next generation of gaming.
Fans have been speculating what other potential studios Microsoft may turn their eyes to next; however, the company's most recent acquisition refers heavily to a long-lasting relationship between themselves and a popular website.
In a post on Ayuha Nakamura's Twitter page, it has been announced that popular tournament-organizing website Smash.gg has been acquired by Microsoft, which has now been confirmed within a post at the top of the official website. Launched in 2015, the site allows players to "register hosts, form a bracket, and create rankings amongst other things."
Whilst the site originally only supported tournaments for the Super Smash Bros. series, it has seemingly become the most widely used piece of software for creating tournaments, in comparison to competitors such as Challonge. Microsoft has a long-standing relationship with Smash.gg, regularly using the site to create tournaments, however no official announcement has been made by Microsoft.
You can check out the confirmation tweet from Ayuha Nakamura below.
WHAT THIS MEANS
Whilst not many details have been shared in terms of the acquisition by either Microsoft or Smash.gg, both companies will benefit from this transaction. The site, which currently has over 6,000 event organizers, has every intent to "keep serving all game communities,” likely meaning it will not become exclusive to Microsoft games or platforms. Microsoft seems to have faith in the site to handle large scale events, therefore there is potential that the company may be looking to expand on their e-sports success.
Fans will be able to continue using the free site to create their tournaments and will hope to see even more improvements brought to the service. Potential implementation within the newly released consoles, Xbox Series X and Series S, is something fans would greatly appreciate, improving accessibility for the site and increasing their potential user base. Time will tell what Microsoft can do to better the already thriving organizing tool.