It’s no secret that Xbox is trying to get brands like Call of Duty and Candy Crush under its belt by acquiring Activision-Blizzard. The $69 (nice) billion bid is still under investigation by market watchdogs. After all, this is not intended to give Microsoft a monopoly position over PlayStation.
What friend and foe are now worried about is whether Xbox (and parent company Microsoft) will continue to support games like Call of Duty on PlayStation. Both console behemoths have been major rivals to each other for years. And with the potential takeover of Activision-Blizzard, Xbox could pull the market to itself.
Call of Duty on PlayStation
Sony has been implying for weeks that the market would be disrupted if Call of Duty went exclusively to Xbox. That remains a bit ironic, given the exclusive content that is available to you as a PlayStation owner when you play these games on Sony’s hardware. But that doesn’t make the concerns any less legitimate.
Call of Duty in Amsterdam (Image: Infinity Ward)
Xbox boss Phil Spencer now answers in a podcast whether PlayStation will continue to get those games. “We’re not taking Call of Duty away from PlayStation. As long as there is a PlayStation, we ship the games there. We’re doing the same thing with a title like Minecraft.” That game is even available on the Nintendo Switch.
A word about Minecraft
Spencer thinks the Minecraft example is very valuable. Since the company took over that game, it has expanded the number of players, not limited them. “That’s been good for the Minecraft community, in my opinion. And I want to start aiming the same for the Call of Duty franchise,” Spencer concluded.
The Xbox boss is bound to make such comments, because they work to his advantage in the ongoing acquisition investigation. That doesn’t mean the boss doesn’t mean it, of course. Besides, Microsoft is not at all concerned about exclusive Call of Duty console games.
In fact, this acquisition is all about the mobile market and the franchises Microsoft can park on it. That market is much larger than the console market.