Microsoft Actually Wanted to Buy Nintendo Back in 2000

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Seeing Mario on xbox would have been weird

Here’s a fun bit of gaming history: tech juggernaut Microsoft wanted to acquire Nintendo in 2000. Keep in mind this was two years before the original Xbox was released.

As proof, Microsoft published a partially-redacted letter from then-Microsoft vice president Rick Thompson to Nintendo of America.

According to the letter, Microsoft wanted to sit down with president Hiroshi Yamauchi and Genyo Takeda. Now retired, Takeda was one of the lead developers on the Nintendo Wii console.

The letter also states Microsoft offered to help “make the Dolphin the best video game [console].” Dolphin was the internal codename for the GameCube.

Thanks to the power of hindsight, we now know the acquisition attempt failed. Microsoft and Nintendo went on to launch the Xbox and GameCube, respectively, in 2001.

Microsoft tries to acquire Nintendo

Earlier this year, a former Xbox executive revealed Microsoft was concerned it would not have enough games for the Xbox at launch. As such, it wanted to acquire a company to buff out its lineup.

However, the executive said Nintendo “just laughed their asses off.” Safe to say the meeting did not go well for Microsoft.

It was not the only company Microsoft had its eyes on, however. The tech giant also sent acquisition offers to Electronic Arts, Midway Games, and Square before its merger with Enix.

That wasn’t the end of Microsoft and Nintendo, however. As fate would have it, Xbox has several of its titles available on the Nintendo Switch. These include Cuphead, Ori and the Blind Forest, and Ori and the Will of the Wisps.

Williams Pelegrin

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