In a nutshell: Not everyone is gunning for Microsoft to follow through with its planned purchase of Activision Blizzard, but the acquisition does have a fan in toy maker Hasbro. With Microsoft on track to acquire Activision, Hasbro sees an opportunity to bring some of its Transformers games to Xbox Game Pass. But first, Activision will have to find the games.
Hasbro worked closely with Activision over the years to publish a number of video games based on the popular Transformers series. Unfortunately, the two let their licensing deal expire in 2017 which led to a number of Transformers games being pulled from digital distribution platforms like Steam.
During San Diego Comic-Con 2023, fan site Transformer World 2005 asked about the possibility of re-releasing older franchise games. Hasbro said Activision is unsure where the hard drives storing the games are located.
"When a company eats a company that eats a company things get lost, and that's very frustrating," the team noted.
Truth be told, Activision probably has bigger fish to fry right now than trying to hunt down old Transformers games on an archived hard drive that may or may not even exist anymore.
Hasbro is hopeful that with the deal moving forward, Microsoft and Xbox will eventually go through all of Activision's archives and stumble across the games in question. The team said they would be an easy Game Pass add, and they would like to have the games back up for people to have the chance to play.
The good news is that even if Microsoft can not find the assets, they already have a good chunk of it. Hasbro said they have everything related to the Fall of Cybertron series but had to manually gather War of Cybertron content from an old computer and rip everything from there.
It "was a learning experience and a long weekend, because we just wanted to get it right, so that's why we did it like that," the Hasbro team said.
Transformers is one of several big targets on Activision's IP list that Microsoft could make use of. Back in 2022, Xbox boss Phil Spencer mentioned several other franchises of interest including Guitar Hero and King's Quest, among others. Spencer is also interested in doing something with StarCraft.