Microsoft Corporation is an American technology company founded on April 4, 1975 by Bill Gates and the late Paul Allen. The origins of Microsoft can be traced back to 1972 when Bill Gates and Paul Allen founded Traf-O-Data, which primarily developed computers meant to calculate and interpret raw data collected by traffic counters and cameras. In 1975, the two developed and pitched a BASIC interpreter for the Altair 8800 microcomputer. Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (MITS) agreed to sell the interpreter, now called Altair BASIC. Gates and Allen would shut down Traf-O-Data and establish Microsoft around this time. The company would become a leader in the technology industry, with operating systems like Xenix and MS-DOS, and later Microsoft Windows, as well as the Microsoft Office Suite, the Internet Explorer web browser, the MSX line of personal computers, and the Bing search engine. The company is also known for manufacturing hardware products, including the Xbox video game consoles. Its video game division, Xbox Game Studios, publishes well-known series such as Halo, Gears of War, Forza and Fable in addition to indie-developed titles such as Super Lucky's Tale, Ori and the Blind Forest, and its sequel Ori and the Will of the Wisps.
On September 24th, 2002, Microsoft purchased Rare, alongside the license for their original intellectual properties, such as Banjo-Kazooie, Perfect Dark, and Conker. Rare's contributions to the Donkey Kong and Star Fox franchises remain under Nintendo's ownership, excluding certain characters from Diddy Kong Racing. On November 6th, 2014, Microsoft purchased Mojang Studios, alongside the Minecraft franchise, from its original founder, Markus Persson. On September 21, 2020, Microsoft announced that it agreed to acquire ZeniMax Media, which was finalized on March 9, 2021. On December 2nd, 2020, Microsoft acquired popular tournament organizing website smash.gg.
Microsoft owns Rare Ltd., the company that created the Banjo-Kazooie franchise and owns its titular characters, Banjo and Kazooie. The Banjo-Kazooie universe debuted in Ultimate as DLC on September 4, 2019, with Banjo & Kazooie as a playable fighter, alongside the stage Spiral Mountain, a location from the original Banjo-Kazooie games, multiple spirits, and 10 music tracks from both Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo-Tooie, including a remix composed by Grant Kirkhope, the original composer of the Banjo-Kazooie games.
Microsoft also owns Mojang Studios, the company that created the Minecraft franchise. The default skin from the game, Steve was released in Ultimate as the second fighter for the Fighters Pass Vol. 2, along with alternate costumes based on the secondary skin Alex and two common enemies from the games, the Zombie and the Enderman, alongside the stage Minecraft World, multiple spirits and 7 music tracks from Minecraft, Minecraft Earth and Minecraft Dungeons.
Three characters from properties published by the Microsoft-owned Bethesda Softworks: Vault Boy from the Fallout series, the Dragonborn from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, and Doom Slayer from the Doom series, also appear as DLC Mii Fighter costumes. It should be noted that Bethesda was acquired by Microsoft after the Vault Boy costume's release.