Former Naughty Dog animator Jonathan Cooper has shared his thoughts on Microsoft’s purchased studios, saying that they aren’t “at the same level” as Sony’s first-party developers. Cooper, who worked on the upcoming The Last of Us 2, added that Microsoft’s studios will only be able to match Sony with “long-term hiring and financial support.”
Microsoft has purchased a number of development studios under its Xbox Game Studios banner, with the likes of 343 Industries, Mojang, Obsidian, and Double Fine each being acquired by the company. However, Cooper believes that Microsoft’s “consistent failure of internal publishing to greenlight and work with 1st/3rd party studios” was problematic during this console generation.
“As we approach the next consoles I truly hope Microsoft have cleaned house in the publishing department after completely shitting the bed for an entire generation,” Cooper tweeted. “I was a huge Xbox360 fan but I don’t ever recall such a dramatic and sustained fall from grace in terms of content.”
While Microsoft has significantly upped its game when it comes to acquiring talented studios, Cooper added that he feels the studios working with Xbox aren’t comparable to those working with Sony. SIE Worldwide Studios contains developers such as Naughty Dog, Guerrilla Games, Insomniac Games, and Media Molecule.
Cooper made the comment in response to a follower on Twitter, though conceded that he prefers the route of acquiring studios as opposed to “creating entirely new studios that have no shared culture”:
None of the purchased studios are at the same level as Sony 1st party, and will only get there with support and long-term hiring and financial support. I do prefer this route to creating entirely new studios that have no shared culture though.
— Jonathan Cooper (@GameAnim) December 16, 2019
Microsoft recently unveiled the Xbox Series X at The Game Awards 2019, finally revealing its next-gen Xbox console. Senua’s Saga: Hellblade 2, developed by Xbox Games Studios’ Ninja Theory, was also announced for the upcoming system.