I read through the other thread and created this account to post in there but I guess here is fine too.
Going by the announcement thread I think I am in the big minority here in the fact that I am a primarily console gamer as opposed to a PC one. I also have pretty much been an Xbox fan since the first console launched in 2001. That being said, I follow the console landscape pretty closely and would like to share my take on what is going on with Xbox and Obsidian (and Inexile).
First, I don't think a lot of you realize that there are a lot of Obsidian fans on console too. I have enjoyed them since KOTOR II and on console they have also release New Vegas (my favorite fallout), and Alpha Protocol (An underrated game I loved). As a guy who plays Xbox (and Playstation) I am super excited that they have gotten a great talent like Obsidian under their umbrella. Pretty much a dream acquisition if I had to go out and think about where I would like to see the Xbox brand grow from a gaming content perspective.
Now there are lots of concerns and I think most are quite valid. In the industry we have often seen these types of deals go sour. Xbox/Microsoft themselves have obviously had issues and closed down talented studios before. There was an entire, frustrating and devastating period where several Xbox studios were creating kinect games and it was just horrible. Talent squandered on lesser products, like that Fable kinect game.... ugh.
With that said I really do think this will be different (yea very cliche but at least hear me out). Microsoft has really pivoted the Xbox brand and approach. In the early days of Xbox, that division was a huge under dog. They were scrappy, they tried a lot of things and found some success, I had some grand times on the OG Xbox and it was largely seen as a joke. The 360 pretty much blew up for them and did extremely well but they stopped doing so many of the things that got them there, mainy they stopped investing in making games/software. By the time the Xbox One came on the scene they were bereft of in house talent and Sony was ready to fire on all cylinders, Nintendo too.
Since Phil Spencer took over a few years ago they have changed course. I believe the future they are steering towards is one that revolves around streaming game and subscription services. Basically the "Netflix of gaming." They have already made strides here with gamepass, which is on Xbox and cost 10 bucks a month. You get a library of roughly 100 games to download and play its a really nice bang for the buck.
I believe gamepass is their first foray into this netflix of gaming goal they are trying to achieve and if you want to be netflix you need to have compelling original content to earn people's subs. That's where their huge interest in first party software comes from now. They know they cant make this work if they don't have a lot of exclusive games to offer. Its no longer simply about trying to sell as many consoles as possible, its about trying to get as many gamers to subscribe to their platform as possible. That's also why they are integrating the Xbox and PC platforms. Their ultimate goal is to get any gamers to buy in whether they are on a PC, some kind of Xbox, phone, tablet, etc. They want anyone to be able to consume Xbox games.
I think this bodes really well for Obsidian and Inexile because they aren't expected to make huge AAA hallmark titles to move systems. They are simply expected to produce quality games that Microsoft can release on a constant basis (along with their other studios) that hit a wide variety of interest and get people signing up for game pass or whatever it becomes down the line.
They basically need reliable, game studios who have a track record of making solid games and getting them out. What Obsidian and Inexile have managed to do with modest crowd funded projects is an impressive feat and something seen as very attractive to Microsoft. I believe them when they essentially say they will let these studios make the games they want while providing support. They bought them to continue doing what they are doing because games like that make the platform (Xbox/Game Pass) more attractive.
Now if you are worried about the games not being on Linux or being locked behind Windows 10, that's valid, I do think its likely that will happen. What I wouldn't be worried about right now is that Obsidian is going to be gutted and destroyed or forced into some horrible situation that kills them. Agai I am just a big Xbox fan and this is just how I see it but I think it makes a lot of sense if you try to read the tea leaves.
Sorry for the long post, I just get really interested in stuff like this and can talk about it for days lol. End of the day I hope all of Obsidian fans can see some awesome products come out of this and be happy. I for one am very excited and I will be extremely disappointed if does go pear shaped.