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18th Jan 2022

Why Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard could mean bad news for Playstation gamers

Hugh Carr

microsoft activision blizzard

With the purchase, Microsoft is now the third biggest games company in the world.

Microsoft have acquired Activision Blizzard for a stunning $68.7 billion.

With the purchase, Microsoft is now the third biggest games company in the world, behind TenCent and Playstation.

Microsoft now own the rights to hundreds of games across the Activision Blizzard roster, including Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch, Call of Duty and Candy Crush.

The purchase also sees Microsoft taking control of Major League Gaming, one of the first and largest esports companies.

These games are set to be added to Xbox Game Pass, a gaming subscription service which allows gamers to download games and play online on their Xbox or PC.

Game Pass costs €9.99 a month, rather than paying full price for a game on launch.

The deal comes after a tumultuous period for Activision Blizzard which has seen a string of allegations of sexual misconduct and discrimination involving senior executives.

The company announced this week it had fired over three dozen employees and disciplined over 40 others since last July to address the situation.

Bobby Kotick will remain in charge of Activision Blizzard, reporting to Microsoft directly.

“Players everywhere love Activision Blizzard games, and we believe the creative teams have their best work in front of them,” said Phil Spencer, CEO, Microsoft Gaming.

“Together we will build a future where people can play the games they want, virtually anywhere they want.”

“For more than 30 years our incredibly talented teams have created some of the most successful games,” said Bobby Kotick, CEO, Activision Blizzard.

“The combination of Activision Blizzard’s world-class talent and extraordinary franchises with Microsoft’s technology, distribution, access to talent, ambitious vision and shared commitment to gaming and inclusion will help ensure our continued success in an increasingly competitive industry.”

But now, I hear you ask, how is this acquisition going to affect Playstation players?

It’s all a question of exclusivity.

In 2021, another major gaming company, Bethesda (Fallout, The Elder Scrolls V; Skyrim) was purchased by Microsoft for $7.5 billion.

While the impact hasn’t quite been felt yet, Phil Spencer has confirmed that the next Elder Scrolls title will be a Microsoft exclusive, for Xbox and PC.

So it begs the question; does this mean that future major Activision Blizzard games such as Call of Duty won’t appear on the Playstation 5 in the future?

Or will it be a similar case to years before, when certain content was exclusive to different consoles for an extended period of time?

We’ll have to wait and see.