Yesterday, Activision and Bungie, the makers of Destiny, announced an end to their publishing partnership that saw the former publish the latter's last two games, Destiny and Destiny 2 (plus all its expansions, DLC, etc.).
With the split, Bungie now assumes full publishing rights of the Destiny franchise. As you may know, it has always owned the IP, but previously the publishing rights belonged to Activision.
Why the break up happened, nobody knows for sure. Activision claims it wants to focus on IP it owns, but some claims have suggested that Activision higher ups were not happy with how Destiny 2 and its follow-up content has performed. It's probably a mixture of both, and other things.
Today, we're announcing plans for Bungie to assume full publishing rights for the Destiny franchise.January 10, 2019
Whatever the case, not long after Bungie announced the split, none other than Xbox boss Phil Spencer chimed in with a pretty standard show of support tweet. While there is seemingly nothing to the tweet by Spencer, it has certain parts of the Internet chatting about whether there's indeed more to it other than a simple nice gesture of support.
Looking forward to a very bright future working with one of my favorite independent studios on one of my favorite franchises. Excited to see how they continue to grow and evolve Destiny.— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) January 10, 2019
Now, it's worth pointing out that Spencer notes that he's looking forward to "a very bright future working" with one of his "favorite independent studios" on one of his "favorite franchises." This seems extra, but Spencer is often this nice when talking to people on Twitter. He's a good dude. However, some people have taken this as a hint that Microsoft will step in as the new publishing arm for the series. Though this seems like a stretch, a huge one actually.
Even if Bungie was looking for a new publishing partner -- it very well might be -- returning to Microsoft seems unlikely. Not only because Microsoft would want rights to the IP, but because Bungie has already worked with Microsoft in the past with the Halo series, which resulted in it leaving the partnership, mostly because it wanted to retain the rights to the IP it created. So, I wouldn't look too much into this tweet by Spencer. It's pretty standard stuff.