Microsoft aimed to secure a Game Pass deal for Baldur's Gate 3 for a mere 5 million US dollars
Microsoft has had quite an eventful day, during which numerous industry secrets were leaked, prompting the emergence of Xbox Head, Phil Spencer, to en...
Microsoft has had quite an eventful day, during which numerous industry secrets were leaked, prompting the emergence of Xbox Head, Phil Spencer, to engage in damage control. Thanks to inadvertently released court documents from Microsoft, a series of intriguing details regarding the near future of Xbox have surfaced, including information about the company's anticipated acquisition of certain games for the Xbox Game Pass.
Within a comprehensive court document that lists games and indicates the likelihood of potential Game Pass deals (thanks to Eurogamer), Microsoft unveils the monetary amount it is willing to expend in order to bring certain games to the service. In the upper echelon of pricing, Microsoft anticipates spending over 300 million US dollars for Star Wars Jedi: Survivor and 250 million US dollars for either Mortal Kombat 1 or Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League. Undoubtedly, these are blockbuster titles, but it amounts to nearly 1 billion US dollars allocated solely for Game Pass deals.
However, there is one blockbuster on the list for which Microsoft was not willing to pay anywhere near what it expected for the major titles, and that is Baldur's Gate 3. With a mere 5 million US dollars, Microsoft hoped to secure what would ultimately prove to be potentially the biggest release of 2023 and position it alongside other titles such as Return to Monkey Island and Ubisoft's Just Dance series. It is safe to say that they will now be paying significantly more if they wish to have Baldur's Gate 3 on their service.
To be fair to Microsoft, it is easy to raise a finger and laugh in hindsight, although $5 million is still ridiculously low considering the success of Divinity: Original Sin 2. As Michael Douse, the publishing director at Larian, has explained, no one who hadn't invested hundreds of hours into the early access version of Baldur's Gate 3 could have foreseen the extent to which the game would gain popularity. Even those who saw Baldur's Gate 3 as the surprise hit it ultimately became must acknowledge that the series and the genre were considered rather niche.
These documents are also quite outdated and do not truly reflect Microsoft's current stance towards specific games today. We can assume that Larian and Microsoft would be willing to negotiate a significantly more favorable deal nowadays if the former had the desire to bring Baldur's Gate 3 to the service. It is simply intriguing to witness that even a mega-corporation like Microsoft had no idea of the game's potential popularity.
In other news regarding Baldur's Gate 3, a true treasure trove of cut content was shared last month, revealing that Larian had originally planned to include a werewolf bard as a companion in the game, but this idea was ultimately discarded. Alongside Astarion, we could have indeed had our very own Twilight-esque romance.