Xbox may be interested in buying the company behind Batman: Arkham Knight, Mortal Kombat, and the Lego game series.
AT&T has reportedly been considering selling off Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, which it wholly owns as part of its Warner Media subsidiary, as a way to reduce some of its debt. According to a new report from The Information, Microsoft has emerged as a new potential buyer for the division.
If Microsoft does end up making the purchase, that could place well-established studios such as Arkham’s Rocksteady, Mortal Kombat’s NetherRealm, Lego’s TT Games, and Middle-earth: Shadow of War’s Monolith as the newest Xbox Game Studios.
It’s important to note that many of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment’s best-known franchises are based on licensed intellectual property from other companies. Those licenses wouldn’t necessarily transfer over in the purchase of the company. Individual arrangements could be made, but the bottom line is that even if the studios do become part of Microsoft, the future of Batman, Harry Potter, and Lord of the Rings games wouldn’t necessarily follow.
According to CNBC, other companies eyeing the purchase of WBIE include Rockstar and 2K parent company Take-Two, Electronic Arts, and Activision Blizzard, and the purchase of the company could cost around $4 billion. For reference, AT&T has about $165 billion in debt at the moment.