Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard

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Lion-Face

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That's what the same statement meant for Bethesda properties - stuff that was signed and contracted prior to the aquisition remained multiplat, but future stuff (Starfield, TES6, whatever the next Fallout will be) is all MS only.

If the same holds true for Activision, whatever's after COD Vanguard will remain multiplat, but don't hold out too much hope for the one after that.


Not that COD has been any good since MW2, mind.
I think the worry is CoD Warzone disappears as that is the game drawing the big crowds and money from CoD. But as with previous Microsoft acquisitions, they seem to leave the 'games as a service' running on all consoles, like Minecraft, Elder Scrolls Online. So I would expect going by that track record, Warzone will continue as is, but CoD 2023 and beyond will disappear from PlayStation.

I would also bet if the war such a thing as Elder scolls online 2, or Warzone 2 they would be exclusive. Interesting time ahead either way.

What Im looking forward to is, if CoD goes from PlayStation, that leaves quite a big hole for new games to come in and flourish, the way this changes the gaming landscape is crazy.
 
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I think the worry is CoD Warzone disappears as that is the game drawing the big crowds and money from CoD. But as with previous Microsoft acquisitions, they seem to leave the 'games as a service' running on all consoles, like Minecraft, Elder Scrolls Online. So I would expect going by that track record, Warzone will continue as is, but CoD 2023 and beyond will disappear from PlayStation.

I would also bet if the war such a thing as Elder scolls online 2, or Warzone 2 they would be exclusive. Interesting time ahead either way.

What Im looking forward to is, if CoD goes from PlayStation, that leaves quite a big hole for new games to come in and flourish, the way this changes the gaming landscape is crazy.
They will definitely leave Warzone as is. It's such a different thing PR wise to pull something off from a platform than not releasing something in the first place.
 
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Speaking of, can we please stop misusing the word monopoly? It's not a monopoly, nor is it close to threatening one.

It's a business conglomerate, if anything.
Too right, there's only one monopoly!

Dad was the hat, gran was the ship, grandad was the boot and I was the car naturally.

But grandad always won as he always ended up with 2 hotels and 4 houses on Mayfair. Never could work out how he managed that... loaded dice 🤔
 

Silver Arrows

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I love it how users feel the need to insult me. Stfu!!

Just putting my opinion since MS feels emboldened right now.

You said something that even with the context of this forum makes no sense, and is so outlandish that it doesn't bother to be truly thought of as a possibility.

If you truly think light ribbing on an insane premise is 'insulting' then...I don't know what to say.
 
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You said something that even with the context of this forum makes no sense, and is so outlandish that it doesn't bother to be truly thought of as a possibility.

If you truly think light ribbing on an insane premise is 'insulting' then...I don't know what to say.
Still what if it happens? Nothing wrong in sharing an opinion that might be outlandish due to worries.

What happens if MS feels the need to lockout a certain brand because they feel emboldened to shake up the competition.
 
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Famine

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Still what if it happens? Nothing wrong in sharing an opinion.
You're missing the point in a very large way.

Firstly, it already has happened. Several times, in fact. The result was... some games didn't have some cars in for a while.

That leads to the larger second point: the fact it has previously happened should, all by itself, suggest that one hardware/software company buying another software company has literally nothing to do with whether games have exclusive cars or not.

Microsoft buying Activision Blizzard King is unrelated to game exclusivity for cars. I have no idea why you'd think it is.

I love it how users feel the need to insult me.
Nothing anyone has said so far is an insult. In fact the thing closest to breaking the AUP is this:
So pack it in.
 

Silver Arrows

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What happens if MS feels the need to lockout a certain brand because they feel emboldened to shake up the competition.

Again, in what world is this going to be done? Not only has it been done before, but lets be real aside from specific cases (mainly, time sensitive exclusivity agreements for a specific car or brand) it won't happen again because the optics in this day and age are poor in the event that happens. As a result, it matters more for most marquees to have their cars in as many games as possible.

You're also forgetting the elephant in the room...that Polyphony themselves locked up PPIHC rights simply because they wanted no one else to have it who might have done it better (and probably with more care too!) and have proceeded to do literally nothing with the license. Where is the condemnation for that if we are going to go down the road you seem to be taking this, in a completely unrelated discussion?

Microsoft buying Activision Blizzard King is unrelated to game exclusivity for cars. I have no idea why you'd think it is.

I have a feeling I know why.
 
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39,841
I love it how users feel the need to insult me. Stfu!!

Just putting my opinion since MS feels emboldened right now.
Your opinion about rumors from nearly a year ago of a game that people basically just hope might exist?



Fun fact: Those rumors only started because Microsoft happened to already own Obsidian. The link you provided even says that. Complaining that a purely theoretical New Vegas 2 might be made and be Xbox exclusive is as absurd as complaining that a purely theoretical Crash 5 would be Xbox exclusive; since the alternative obviously isn't "this game would be made and would be on PS5 as well." It's "this game never had a snowball's chance in hell of being made until Microsoft bought the IP." Bethesda wasn't interested in having Obsidian come back to actually make a good Fallout game, since they made two crappier Fallout games themselves in the intervening decade following New Vegas; just like Activision had no interest in making another Crash game when they fired half of the studio that made the previous one and sent the remainder to the Call of Duty mines to pump out weapon skins.
 
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I hope MS just hires Dreamhaven to make Starcraft 3. We just got AoE4, SC3 in about 4-5 years would be sweet. There's still a place in the gaming landscape for a couple of well made RTSeses, and WC3 Reforged can go fondle a sack of salami.
 

Scaff

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In a move that I'm 100% sure no-one actually believe, MS have said that (checks notes) Activision doesn't make any 'must have' titles at all...

“With respect to Activision Blizzard video games, there is nothing unique about the video games developed and published by Activision Blizzard that is a ‘must-have’ for rival PC and console video game distributors that could give rise to a foreclosure concern,” Microsoft said in the application.

...as part of its justification in the application to buy Activision.

What I'm most intrigued about is how they managed to keep a straight face while writing that.

 
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39,841
Microsoft is not alone in saying this.


Other than Sony, who's opinion is so far from impartial on the matter that it's basically irrelevant (unless they want to backtrack on their own Bungie deal that was done to launch their own GaaS system), other game publishers (Ubisoft and Riot in particular) have given sentiment to regulators for Brazil very similar to what Microsoft is saying to New Zealand. Some of that is probably pretentious arrogance on the publisher in question's part (Ubisoft...), but Microsoft still isn't the only one saying it.










I feel it's also hard to argue that it's true that even Call of Duty is something that it being exclusive to a single system (which Microsoft has repeatedly noted would not be done anyway, but even if we assume there's some sort of technically correct gotcha buried in their statements) would doom all competitors. Microsoft name-checked Valve, which is a bit of an apples/oranges comparison but still a point of comparison to make; but Nintendo is a direct competitor and there hasn't been a Call of Duty game on a Nintendo system in a decade and there's no irreparable harm to be seen there. The only company that would be harmed is Sony having spent the entire previous console generation paying Activision (among other companies) handsomely to have the CoD franchise be associated as being a Playstation franchise that happened to be playable elsewhere eventually that they would (obviously) immediately lose if Call of Duty becomes a Microsoft franchise (even if it remains multiplatform); but making moves that aren't beneficial to your competitors aren't inherently antitrust issues. Certainly not on the heels of those same competitors kicking your teeth in for at least a decade like Sony was.
 
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Scaff

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Microsoft is not alone in saying this.


Other than Sony, who's opinion is so far from impartial on the matter that it's basically irrelevant (unless they want to backtrack on their own Bungie deal that was done to launch their own GaaS system), other game publishers (Ubisoft and Riot in particular) have given sentiment to regulators for Brazil very similar to what Microsoft is saying to New Zealand. Some of that is probably pretentious arrogance on the publisher in question's part (Ubisoft...), but Microsoft still isn't the only one saying it.










I feel it's also hard to argue that it's true that even Call of Duty is something that it being exclusive to a single system (which Microsoft has repeatedly noted would not be done anyway, but even if we assume there's some sort of technically correct gotcha buried in their statements) would doom all competitors. Microsoft name-checked Valve, which is a bit of an apples/oranges comparison but still a point of comparison to make; but more directly there hasn't been a Call of Duty game on a Nintendo system in a decade and there's no irreparable harm to be seen there. The only company that would be harmed is Sony having spent the entire previous console generation paying Activision handsomely to have the CoD franchise be associated as being a Playstation franchise that happened to be playable elsewhere that they would (obviously) immediately lose if Call of Duty becomes a Microsoft franchise (even if it remains multiplatform); but making moves that aren't beneficial to your competitors aren't inherently antitrust issues.
It's not that it would doom other systems, it's that it would certainly impact they heavily, and when they are direct competitors it does become a factor.

CoD has arguably gone beyond being one of the largest gaming franchises, as outside of two Nintendo exclusives, nothing comes close in terms of video games.

If PlayStation was to lose CoD it wouldn't kill it as a platform, but it would significantly damage it.
 
39,841
It's not that it would doom other systems
But that's the standard Microsoft noted in their response to the New Zealand government, parroted more or less by other third party publishers to the Brazilian government. "There is nothing unique... that could give rise to a foreclosure concern." To wit, it seems Microsoft saw these exact objections coming and that's why they went out of their way to repeatedly note that that would not happen with Call of Duty regardless immediately after they announced the purchase; something they never did with any of Bethesda's properties beyond confirming that Sony would still get Ghostwire and Deathloop.



If PlayStation was to lose CoD it wouldn't kill it as a platform, but it would significantly damage it.
Sony losing the ability to pay the publisher of their most valuable third party games to have exclusive DLC for every release and some variety of an "Only on Playstation" logo on the boxart of the game might mean they have to do something else beyond moneyhatting to maintain the overwhelming market dominance they've carried for all but about 5 years of the past 28. Sony's further arguments about the dangers of games like Call of Duty being immediately put on Game Pass ring especially hollow when Sony jumped into that market first (by buying out an established company in the space no less) and had it on several devices including ones they didn't even make and had half a decade to capitalize on it from their overwhelmingly dominant market position and probably pushed Microsoft into the idea in the first place.




And then just used it to dump PS3 games on it for PS4 owners to play so they'd leave Sony alone about backwards compatibility.
 
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Scaff

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But that's the standard Microsoft noted in their response to the New Zealand government, parroted more or less by other third party publishers to the Brazilian government. "There is nothing unique... that could give rise to a foreclosure concern." To wit, it seems Microsoft saw these exact objections coming and that's why they went out of their way to repeatedly note that that would not happen with Call of Duty regardless immediately after they announced the purchase;
Reaction GIF by MOODMAN


However, I'm sure you also see the absurdity of describing CoD as a franchise in that way
something they never did with any of Bethesda's properties beyond confirming that Sony would still get Ghostwire and Deathloop.
Both of which Bethesda was already contractually obliged to I believe, which is not the case with any future Bethesda titles, such as Redfall and Starfield.
Sony losing the ability to pay the publisher of their most valuable third party games to have exclusive DLC for every release and some variety of an "Only on Playstation" logo on the boxart of the game might mean they have to do something else beyond moneyhatting to maintain the overwhelming market dominance they've carried for all but about 5 years of the past 28. Sony's further arguments about the dangers of games like Call of Duty being immediately put on Game Pass ring especially hollow when Sony jumped into that market first (by buying out an established company in the space no less) and had it on several devices including ones they didn't even make and had half a decade to capitalize on it from their overwhelmingly dominant market position and probably pushed Microsoft into the idea in the first place.

And then just used it to dump PS3 games on it for PS4 owners to play so they'd leave Sony alone about backwards compatibility.
Exclusives, timed or otherwise, outside of titles from 1st party studios, I fully and 100% condemn. You would not see my argument being any different if the roles were reversed.
 
39,841
However, I'm sure you also see the absurdity of describing CoD as a franchise in that way
To an extent, but it is something that needs to be said to regulators; and it helps all the more when other companies in the same industry say the same no matter how deluded (Ubisoft) they may be.

Both of which Bethesda was already contractually obliged to I believe, which is not the case with any future Bethesda titles, such as Redfall and Starfield.
That's my point. Microsoft went way out in front and said "Call of Duty is going to be multiplatform regardless." They never did that with any of Bethesda's properties even when directly asked about them, and when people claimed Bethesda would be a precedent to what they will do with ActiBlizz I was unmoved by the reasoning. Considering how much it must cost Activision to fire everyone with a creative thought in their head and ship everyone else to the Call of Duty mines to pump out hundred-million-dollar-plus games that take 5 years to produce that come out yearly, I daresay that I don't think even Microsoft could afford to cut off that revenue stream and still release the games as Activision have been.

Exclusives, timed or otherwise, outside of titles from 1st party studios, I fully and 100% condemn. You would not see my argument being any different if the roles were reversed.
My apologies. I didn't mean to imply you were stating such. I'm noting that Sony is threading a very small, dangerous needle to try and insist to regulators that Microsoft is performing an inherently noncompetitive act that will harm consumers when arguing from a perch of 50% (or whatever) control of console market share among three companies that they've maintained or exceeded for almost every year over nearly 3 decades. Certainly so when they are the only major publisher in the space who is making such a stink and regulators are responding to their pushback by directly asking other publishers how Sony has come to control the market for so long (and frequently so lopsidedly).



It's understandable why Sony is so concerned about entirely losing a major competitive edge that they've maintained through royalty payments for an entire console generation in order to create a feedback loop of market control, but I strongly suspect that regulators will look at Sony taking an extremely short term viewpoint with how they operated their gaming division during the PS4 era as not being Microsoft's (or regulators') problem even if Sony wasn't now trying to play catchup with their own major studio purchases and GaaS systems. And especially when Nintendo is also a competitor in the same market who basically doesn't care, since they haven't structured their business in a way that leaves them so exposed as Sony has.
 
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Scaff

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That's my point. Microsoft went way out in front and said "Call of Duty is going to be multiplatform regardless." They never did that with any of Bethesda's properties even when directly asked about them, and when people claimed Bethesda would be a precedent to what they will do with ActiBlizz I was unmoved by the reasoning. Considering how much it must cost Activision to fire everyone with a creative thought in their head and ship everyone else to the Call of Duty mines to pump out hundred-million-dollar-plus games that take 5 years to produce that come out yearly, I daresay that I don't think even Microsoft could afford to cut off that revenue stream and still release the games as Activision have been.
While I agree it's unlikely due to the potential loss of revenue for MS, they were not quite as unequivocal as "Call of Duty is going to be multiplatform regardless", rather going for a more vague...

"To be clear, Microsoft will continue to make Call of Duty and other popular Activision Blizzard titles available on PlayStation through the term of any existing agreement with Activision. And we have committed to Sony that we will also make them available on PlayStation beyond the existing agreement and into the future so that Sony fans can continue to enjoy the games they love. We are also interested in taking similar steps to support Nintendo's successful platform. We believe this is the right thing for the industry, for gamers and for our business."

...which certainly leaves room for manoeuvre, as both "beyond the existing agreement" and "into the future" are open to massive amounts of interpretation. Much of it will depend on factors that are currently unknown, such as where the balance of console war is once those agreements lapse, how much MS believe they would be able to gain as conquest sales if they did go exclusive, and if the balance of revenue increase for themselves vs. revenue hit they could inflict on Sony stacks up (right now it's in favour of the status-quo, if that changes so could MS's position).
 
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39,841

I strongly suspect that this is the end of any real FTC pushback on the merger. While I know that's only one regulatory body, that's not nothing.




This in particular:
market, has been one of the few vocal opponents of the merger. It is a stark contrast of interests: If the merger is approved and the labor deal with Microsoft is effectuated, Activision Blizzard workers across the United States fighting sexual harassment and other poor working conditions stand to finally have a voice on the job and a chance to shape working conditions throughout the industry, and gamers will have allies inside a corporation with real protections for speaking out in consumers’ interests. If the merger is disapproved, the power relations within the gaming industry for labor stay the same, Sony protects its very profitable position as the industry leader, and consumers will have to wait and see if subscription services mature into a viable gaming option.

Is a particularly targeted (and surprisingly nasty) thump at Sony from a major lobbying group that Biden desperately needs a win from after last week and constantly talks about championing; and Microsoft got this free publicity for something they had said they were going to do anyway months ago.
 
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