Microsoft has consistently reiterated that Bethesda games will come to PlayStation on a case-by-case basis, but while it admittedly continues to support live service efforts like Fallout 76 and The Elder Scrolls Online on Sony’s consoles, we’re slowly beginning to see that won’t be the outcome for new projects. The recently released Redfall was cancelled on PS5, for example, and the same is true of Starfield, meanwhile a contract with Disney was renegotiated to exclude PlayStation platforms from the upcoming Indiana Jones adaptation.
And in the FTC’s ongoing court case against the Redmond firm, as it attempts to temporarily halt its proposed $69 billion buyout of Activision Blizzard, lawyers asked talkative suit Phil Spencer about The Elder Scrolls 6. The exec had previously insinuated in an interview with GQ that the game would not come to PlayStation, as he said it’s “not about punishing any other platform […] but in order to be on Xbox, I want us to be able to bring the full complete package of what we have”.
Asked whether it still plans to release The Elder Scrolls 6 exclusively, Spencer talked around the issue: “It’s so far out it’s hard to understand what the platforms will even be. We’re talking about a game that’s five-plus years away.” Microsoft expects next-gen consoles, like the PS6, to release in 2028, so he’s effectively suggesting the next game from Bethesda Softworks may not even release on current-gen consoles, which is feasible considering the team is still currently working on Starfield.
While we imagine the plan will be to release The Elder Scrolls 6 as a console exclusive, Spencer’s response is smart, because it’s probably true that the title won’t arrive until new systems are available, thus he’s technically not lying when he says “it’s hard to understand what the platforms will even be”. Earlier in the court hearing, the executive had said that Microsoft bought Bethesda in the first place to block Sony from securing timed console exclusivity on Starfield.