This story is a prime example of one company not having a clue about what the other one is planning.
The Outer Worlds was created by Obsidian Entertainment. The original creators of Fallout have effectively created a not-Fallout, which was then published by Take-Two’s Private Division arm. However, during the development, Microsoft acquired Obsidian, which in turn joined Xbox Game Studios (which is now also including Bethesda, meaning Obsidian would no longer have any obstacles in making a new Fallout after Fallout: New Vegas).
Here’s what Karl Slatoff, the president of Take-Two, said during its financial earnings call: „We’re incredibly pleased with The Outer Worlds and everything that it’s brought. It was — I can’t say that it was a complete surprise out of the gate, but it was certainly was something pleasant for us and a little bit unexpected. We will be participating in the franchise and whatever the future holds for that franchise. So we feel really good about it. And we think that it’s still building an audience and this game itself has a lot of life left in it. And in the future — we’ll see what the future holds for it. But we do think it’s a long-term franchise and it is certainly something that we’re pleased with the results.”
Now here’s the twist: a day later, Private Division’s representatives sent an update to Gamasutra, in which they claim that Take-Two wouldn’t be involved in any „future iterations” in The Outer Worlds, meaning Obsidian and Microsoft would be solely responsible for any sequels in the future. It means that Phil Spencer, the head of Xbox, might have heard what Slatoff said, and he had to lecture the company about the situation: they bought Obsidian, so they also picked up the IP of The Outer Worlds.
It’s funny how Slatoff might have no clue on what terms Microsoft had during the acquisition. And they won’t have money to buy Obsidian (because Microsoft has a product you might know fairly well; it is called Windows…).