The UK government’s Competition and Markets Authority have been investigating Microsoft for its planned Activision Blizzard acquisition for quite some time now. The CMA is analyzing the deal for any potential anti-competitive elements.
PlayStation maker Sony has been one of the loudest voices against the deal. The company is understandably worried about Microsoft making Call of Duty an Xbox exclusive.
Microsoft’s Xbox boss Phil Spencer has once again assured that it won’t be the case. Phil insisted that Microsoft has no intention of making COD exclusive to Xbox platforms.
In an interview with the Same Brain youtube channel, Phill made his clearest remark regarding the COD series’ exclusivity on Xbox. He said the following.
We’re not taking Call of Duty from PlayStation… That’s not our intent. Our intent is not to do that and as long as there’s a PlayStation out there to ship to, our intent is that we’ll continue to ship Call of Duty on PlayStation – similar to what we’ve done with Minecraft since we owned
that. We’ve expanded the places where people can play Minecraft, we haven’t reduced the places. And it’s been good, it’s been good for the Minecraft community – in my opinion – and we want to do the same when we think where Call of Duty can go over the years.
He also discussed the benefits Xbox Game Pass subscribers might expect if the acquisition transpires.
For Xbox itself, players who have invested in our console, I think the biggest addition that you’re going to see is some great games coming to Game Pass. This isn’t going to be about pulling, as I said, those communities off of other platforms, but I want to be a great place for people to see those games.
Regulators are also concerned about the competitive advantage that Microsoft might gain by including the COD franchise in its Game Pass subscription service.
If Microsoft’s Activation-Blizzard acquisition goes through, gamers who already have the Game Pass will likely be able to play future COD games without any added cost.
Although everything Spencer said in the interview is not legally bound, it shows Microsoft’s willingness to stand behind its commitment.
Along with the CMA, the US Federal Trade Commission is also overseeing the $69bn USD acquisition. Recently, the CMA started asking for public opinion about the matter. Meanwhile, Brazil has already approved Microsoft’s acquisition, stating that its goal is to protect consumers’ interests, not PlayStation’s.