The industry analyst Micheal Pachter thinks it is not unlikely that Sony will buy the WB Games division or the associated assets. According to him, investments in the brands of Final Fantasy and Metal Gear make less sense.
The acquisition of Bethesda by Microsoft has, according to the estimate of analysts Michael Pachter, although no major impact on the sales of PS5. But he believes that a similar acquisition by Sony was more likely.
Sony would be able to buy AT&T’s WB Games division (Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment), even if Pachter did not consider this scenario to be extremely likely. Should a deal actually be negotiated, Sony would without further ado own brands like Batman and Mortal Kombat.
“Their acquisitions have been smaller, like Insomniac, and those are the kinds of acquisitions that I would expect,” said Pachter. “I do think Sony is in a good position to buy Warner Bros. Interactive assets should they ever go on sale again. Depending on whether AT&T chooses to sell them, and how.”
In the case of a simple licensing, Pachter says it would be less likely that exclusive contracts will be concluded, as the company has no intention of restricting them to one platform. “If they just want to license their IP out, they will probably not go with exclusivity deals, because they won’t want the games limited to just one platform, but if they sell perpetual rights to Batman or Mortal Kombat, I think those assets would be pretty cool for Sony to fold into their lineup. They already did it with Spider-Man, so we know they would be interested in something like that,” Pachter continued.
The analyst would not have considered this scenario so far as it was revealed that WB was off the table. “But now that Bethesda just got bought for $7.5 billion, you have to think AT&T are thinking, ‘could we get $7 billion.”
In the past, it has been speculated that Sony could buy individual IPs from third-party manufacturers, with Metal Gear and Final Fantasy being considered by several people. Given the close connection that already exists with PlayStation and the fact that Final Fantasy 16 has already been confirmed as an exclusive to PS5 launch title, the assumption does not sound at all absurd.
However, Pachter believes the two brands are not of great value for a variety of reasons: “Well, Metal Gear without Kojima might not be worth very much, and Final Fantasy, when did the last one come out? 2016? I’m not sure anyone really cares there, I think that that’s just a couple of million units we are talking about, that’s not a system seller.”
In Japan, interest in these brands is usually greater. But the players there don’t buy an Xbox anyway, “so Sony doesn’t really have to worry there, especially since all those Japanese games will be on PlayStation anyway, so Sony isn’t at risk of losing those titles.” In conclusion, Pachter stated: “I don’t think those assets are worth much.”