Microsoft reportedly offered Sony a 10-year deal to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 3,711   +1,162
Staff member
A hot potato: Microsoft desperately wants to close this multibillion-dollar deal with Activision Blizzard King (Activision for short). Not only has the acquisition gone past the point that it was supposed to be completed, but it has also brought heavy scrutiny from regulators who threaten to shut it down unless Microsoft spins off part of its business. It has prompted many promises from execs in Redmond, the latest of which is to offer a 10-year deal to Sony over Call of Duty.

Practically since the announcement of Microsoft's $69 billion deal to pick up Activision, Sony has protested to regulators against the acquisition. It has consistently framed its argument using the company's biggest-selling franchise, Call of Duty, to paint a picture where nobody but Microsoft will ever see another CoD game if the deal goes through.

Microsoft has continually denied that it would sequester the successful game series within the Xbox walled garden. It continues to affirm that it fully intends to honor all agreements made before the acquisition was made public. However, Sony continues to press the issue, and regulators are ramping up investigations into the deal.

In the latest development, Microsoft has said that it offered Sony a 10-year iron-clad contract earlier this month to continue releasing CoD games for the PlayStation. While Sony has not commented on the claim, Microsoft President Brad Smith told The New York Times it has a lot riding on the merger. If it falls through, it will leave a big question mark on whether corporations can mutually benefit from acquisitions in years to come.

Here is a quick list of concessions Microsoft has agreed to if regulators allow it to purchase Activision:

  • Honoring past development agreements Activision has made
  • Offering to keep CoD on PlayStation for three years beyond those agreements
  • Remaining neutral in union negotiations at Activision and Blizzard
  • Paying Activision $3 billion if the acquisition fails
  • Guaranteeing to continue producing CoD games on PlayStation for at least 10 years

"If this deal had happened four years ago, this would hardly be of any interest," said Smith. "If one cannot do something easy, then we'll all know you can't do something hard."

Microsoft needs to convince regulators in 16 nations that the acquisition is good for the consumer. So far, only Brazil and Saudi Arabia have given the green light. Serbia is also likely to give its approval soon. However, other nations, particularly the US, UK, and EU, have done nothing but increase their scrutiny over the deal.

Smith feels the Activision deal is essential to continued growth. Microsoft's gaming division has become a significant portion of its revenue stream, with Xbox making more than $15 billion annually. The Redmond tech giant is so vested in the pick-up that it promised Activision $3 billion even if the merger falls apart.

Microsoft's official position on how the deal affects consumers is that it opens the door for even more players to play games regardless of their favored platform. Of course, this glosses over the fact that it refers to gaming via the cloud with a Game Pass subscription, which is definitely in Microsoft's best interest.

Permalink to story.

 

rrwards

Posts: 258   +490
"If this deal had happened four years ago, this would hardly be of any interest," said Smith.

Read: If this happened when people didn't care as much about regulation, this wouldn't be a problem

Duh Mr. CEO
 

Bl00dyMinded

Posts: 511   +790
I still don't understand this... I'm a Sony fanboy. And I don't see how it will be in the best interest of Microsoft to sole make CoD exclusive to Xbox & PC with the amount of money this game pulls in all directions. No idea what Sony is so worried about honestly.
 

James Ryan

Posts: 37   +75
I still don't understand this... I'm a Sony fanboy. And I don't see how it will be in the best interest of Microsoft to sole make CoD exclusive to Xbox & PC with the amount of money this game pulls in all directions. No idea what Sony is so worried about honestly.
It's a future play for when consoles and PCs are dead.
Microsoft is playing the early cloud gaming card by owning everything in the space.
Just wait and see.
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,932   +6,923
They didn't support Persson the Creator anymore - for his support for QAnon, homophobic ,anti-transgender views - your average toxic full of fear alt-wing person. Things they can't accept scare them
Man does not immediately suckle at the teat of the agenda, is cancelled. Toxicity is only allowed if it supports OUR agenda!
No, no we don’t. What happened?
More recent minecraft updates have introduced auto censoring in the chat, to the point that some commands ere getting censored. They started requiring a MS account to use the service, and will happily ban hammer people for saying wrongthink, which also prevents you from playing singleplayer or any other games tied to said account that you paid for. They also introduced auto reporting software in their newer versions that can be easily abused (and there are already mods out there doing so, spamming the report system with millions of false reports) to ban anyone you dont like forever.

While all this is going on, users have been upset with minecraft's content updates feeling disconnected, content locked behind paywalls (all the new multiplayer stuff) ece.

It's a mess, and its obvious that MS is abusing their position to control their users, phil spencer has gone on record stating he wants cross system bans for doing a naughty, and the same company is pushing hard to tie your windows account tot hat same system. It's something out of a black mirror episode.
 

dangh

Posts: 839   +1,436
I still don't understand this... I'm a Sony fanboy. And I don't see how it will be in the best interest of Microsoft to sole make CoD exclusive to Xbox & PC with the amount of money this game pulls in all directions. No idea what Sony is so worried about honestly.

PlayStation sells much more units than Xbox, offering continuously well received first party games.
Even, if those games are receiving good receptions, all of them combined sells less than CoD.
PS First Party Games are not money makers. They do not have loot boxes, tons of DLC, they are made to appeal to people looking for a story and enjoys the ride.
PlayStation makes money not on those games, but on 3rd party games. CoD is one of the main money makers for PlayStation (other is Fortnite).
If CoD (and other strong sellers like Elder Scrolls and similar) are taken out of PS platform, people will be buying PS less frequently, meaning will be buying other 3rd party games less frequently. And that's on top of lost revenue from CoD (and all other Activision games in general).
With that in-place PS would need to start making money on first party games. This would mean cancelling large productions which generate small return, and heavy introduce of loot boxes, transactions etc. - greatly reducing mine, as a gamer, experience and create products for masses, like Fortnite and similar (and that's not very good).

MS can (and do) move money from other part of their businesses to Xbox branch to push for a monopoly. They do not care about making profit, they care about gaining IPs in order to make competition barely on a surviving state (similar, like Intel was keeping AMD alive so they weren't targeted with antitrust). Sony can't push money from other branches to PlayStation, and PlayStation needs to actually be profitable or it will go down.
MS of course don't want to be target of antitrust more than usually, but they want to squeeze any money possible. They do what they can to push game pass to any platform, and they want to use any leverage to have it on PS as well (because thanks to that they could get extra subscription cash and reduce PS income). Using CoD for that is a huge leverage point.

So yes, it is in a best interest of MS to take CoD out of Sony's platform, same way they take out all other Bethesda titles out of the Sony platform. Same will happen with Activision games, best example is they are saying about 10 years, not 'for ever'.
MS is doing all shady things for year to reduce competition and get control over whatever they couldn't destroy (Android is great example). Asking biggest corpo on earth if they will behave well after absorbing large IPs is a bit of a joke, really.
 
Last edited:

Bl00dyMinded

Posts: 511   +790
PlayStation sells much more units than Xbox, offering continuously well received first party games.
Even, if those games are receiving good receptions, all of them combined sells less than CoD.
PS First Party Games are not money makers. They do not have loot boxes, tons of DLC, they are made to appeal to people looking for a story and enjoys the ride.
PlayStation makes money not on those games, but on 3rd party games. CoD is one of the main money makers for PlayStation (other is Fortnite).
If CoD (and other strong sellers like Elder Scrolls and similar) are taken out of PS platform, people will be buying PS less frequently, meaning will be buying other 3rd party games less frequently. And that's on top of lost revenue from CoD (and all other Activision games in general).
With that in-place PS would need to start making money on first party games. This would mean cancelling large productions which generate small return, and heavy introduce of loot boxes, transactions etc. - greatly reducing mine, as a gamer, experience and create products for masses, like Fortnite and similar (and that's not very good).

MS can (and do) move money from other part of their businesses to Xbox branch to push for a monopoly. They do not care about making profit, they care about gaining IPs in order to make competition barely on a surviving state (similar, like Intel was keeping AMD alive so they weren't targeted with antitrust). Sony can't push money from other branches to PlayStation, and PlayStation needs to actually be profitable or it will go down.
MS of course don't want to be target of antitrust more than usually, but they want to squeeze any money possible. They do what they can to push game pass to any platform, and they want to use any leverage to have it on PS as well (because thanks to that they could get extra subscription cash and reduce PS income). Using CoD for that is a huge leverage point.

So yes, it is in a best interest of MS to take CoD out of Sony's platform, same way they take out all other Bethesda titles out of the Sony platform. Same will happen with Activision games, best example is they are saying about 10 years, not 'for ever'.
MS is doing all shady things for year to reduce competition and get control over whatever they couldn't destroy (Android is great example). Asking biggest corpo on earth if they will behave well after absorbing large IPs is a bit of a joke, really.
Still doesn't explain how this will benefit MS. If COD is such a money maker why would they remove it from multiple platforms and make it exclusive. When they can double the net gains by offering it to other consoles...

Also what you mean first party games? The PlayStation best sellers is literally first party games (Spiderman, God of War, Horizon, Demon Souls Ghost of Tsushima...) I mean the list can keep going.
 

dangh

Posts: 839   +1,436
Still doesn't explain how this will benefit MS. If COD is such a money maker why would they remove it from multiple platforms and make it exclusive. When they can double the net gains by offering it to other consoles...

Also what you mean first party games? The PlayStation best sellers is literally first party games (Spiderman, God of War, Horizon, Demon Souls Ghost of Tsushima...) I mean the list can keep going.
How this doesn't explain? Any console Sony sells less, ms sell more.
And all PlayStation best sellers combined brings less money to PlayStation than single CoD.
 

Pastuch

Posts: 151   +167
It's a future play for when consoles and PCs are dead.
Microsoft is playing the early cloud gaming card by owning everything in the space.
Just wait and see.

Lol oh yeah, cloud gaming is killing it! Half the cloud gaming platforms have already gone under. There is no getting around the massive latency involved with cloud gaming and since the bulk of gaming is multiplayer that’s a massive problem
 

Pastuch

Posts: 151   +167
Still doesn't explain how this will benefit MS. If COD is such a money maker why would they remove it from multiple platforms and make it exclusive. When they can double the net gains by offering it to other consoles...

Also what you mean first party games? The PlayStation best sellers is literally first party games (Spiderman, God of War, Horizon, Demon Souls Ghost of Tsushima...) I mean the list can keep going.

Warzone 2 has 25 million players, its a week old. The ps sales charts are inaccurate
 

kiwigraeme

Posts: 1,388   +1,030
Man does not immediately suckle at the teat of the agenda, is cancelled. Toxicity is only allowed if it supports OUR agenda!
More recent minecraft updates have introduced auto censoring in the chat, to the point that some commands ere getting censored. They started requiring a MS account to use the service, and will happily ban hammer people for saying wrongthink, which also prevents you from playing singleplayer or any other games tied to said account that you paid for. They also introduced auto reporting software in their newer versions that can be easily abused (and there are already mods out there doing so, spamming the report system with millions of false reports) to ban anyone you dont like forever.

While all this is going on, users have been upset with minecraft's content updates feeling disconnected, content locked behind paywalls (all the new multiplayer stuff) ece.

It's a mess, and its obvious that MS is abusing their position to control their users, phil spencer has gone on record stating he wants cross system bans for doing a naughty, and the same company is pushing hard to tie your windows account tot hat same system. It's something out of a black mirror episode.

Cheers for the update - mine was a bit cheeky - as OP didn't respond when question asked.

My son hasn't played it for awhile - would much rather create geometry dash levels.
I can't comment on your things - sure there is a lot of truth in there - but this is world wide problem - especially if a lot of kids playing - Ro-bucks etc

Automation is critical , plus AI , plus finally humans for 1% of cases - so will be abused.

As for my son on MC - he just enjoys crafting , building - so lots of that stuff doesn't apply .
Think he's done community group projects through school - so must be invite only