Xbox and Bethesda to hold joint conference this summer during E3 2021

Microsoft is participating in "Take Your Developer to E3 Day."

Photo via Constantin Wiedemann / Flickr

Xbox and developer Bethesda Softworks will host a joint conference this summer during E3 2021, according to Matt Booty, the head of Xbox Game Studios at Microsoft. In an interview with French outlet Le Figaro, Booty said the two companies will share the stage together at a showcase “in a few weeks,” which places it around June 12 to 15, around when E3 takes place.

Xbox has confirmed it will be attending E3 this year, indicating that the Xbox-Bethesda showcase will likely be a part of E3 instead of just running alongside it, like Sony is doing with its PlayStation showcase. E3 is making its return after it was canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Microsoft purchased ZeniMax Studios and its umbrella properties, including Arkane Studios (developers of Dishonored and Prey), id Software (Doom, Quake, and Rage), MachineGames (Wolfenstein), and of course Bethesda (The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, and new IP Starfield), in March. The purchase was made for a staggering $7.5 billion.

While the interview with Booty and Le Figaro is locked behind a paywall, the interviewer, Chloé Woitier, shared some important takeaways in a thread on Twitter. A priority for Booty and Xbox is not to interfere at all with the studios’ creative freedom and they don’t want them “to create games based on what might work best on Game Pass.”

Xbox Game Pass has become one of the most popular gaming services in the world, with a reported 23 million subscribers at the end of this past April. Many iconic Bethesda games made their way to Game Pass when the company was acquired and many expect future games like Starfield to join them.

Starfield is Bethesda’s first new IP in years after tremendous critical and financial success with the Fallout and Elder Scrolls series. In response to rumors regarding how far along Starfield‘s development has come, reporter Jason Schreier said Bethesda’s plan at the conference is to “tease a [2022] release date for Starfield.”

Both longtime and recent Bethesda fans will certainly be interested in watching the first post-Xbox acquisition conference for the storied developer at E3.