Sony and Microsoft continue public battle over the fate of Call of Duty

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Wars are still being fought over the fallout of Microsoft's mammoth acquisition of Activision Blizzard back in January. Specifically, what will happen to the industry-leading Call of Duty franchise. Though Microsoft has stated several times its intention to continue releasing Call of Duty on PlayStation, PlayStation head Jim Ryan has remained unpleased with the situation.

In a statement to The Verge, Xbox head Phil Spencer revealed that, following Microsoft's offer to buy Activision Blizzard, they provided Sony with a signed, written statement that they would continue to put Call of Duty on PlayStation with full content and feature parity and on the same day as other platforms, for "at least several more years" following the end of Sony's current contract with Activision Blizzard, which he boasted was "well beyond typical gaming industry agreements." It's not currently known how many games are covered by Sony's current deal with Activision Blizzard.

Ryan shot back at Microsoft in a statement released to GamesIndustry.biz, calling Microsoft's offer "inadequate on many levels." Microsoft's proposal only extended the current offer for three years, which Ryan felt undermined their ability to provide PlayStation players with a top-quality Call of Duty experience. He also expressed some frustration with feeling compelled to make a public statement, adding "I hadn’t intended to comment on what I understood to be a private business discussion, but I feel the need to set the record straight because Phil Spencer brought this into the public forum."

Meanwhile, the UK's Competition and Markets Authority has decided that its investigation into the Activision Blizzard acquisition will require a more-detailed "phase 2" investigation to see if the deal could seriously impact Sony's ability to compete fairly in the UK, believing that Call of Duty alone is a big enough console seller. Sony, speaking again to GamesIndustry.biz, celebrated the announcement, declaring that "by giving Microsoft control of Activision games like Call of Duty, this deal would have major negative implications for gamers and the future of the gaming industry. We want to guarantee PlayStation gamers continue to have the highest quality gaming experience, and we appreciate the CMA's focus on protecting gamers." Microsoft shot back with a terse statement to Eurogamer, simply stating "it makes zero business sense for Microsoft to remove Call of Duty from PlayStation given its market leading console position."
 

eyeliner

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Next up, if Sony pushes Microsoft:
Activision kills Call of Duty IP.

Work on a new IP commences, called "Let's Shoot Bad Guys in Warzone Settings With Cinematic Experience"
 

Marc_LFD

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Next up, if Sony pushes Microsoft:
Activision kills Call of Duty IP.

Work on a new IP commences, called "Let's Shoot Bad Guys in Warzone Settings With Cinematic Experience"
Think it's guaranteed that we'll see an Activision FPS game with Halo at this point, even if it's only on PC/Xbox ("only").
 

Guacaholey

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Really should be more of a battle over antitrust. Microsoft is literally trying to create another monopoly
They've bought a couple big publishers, that's far from creating a monopoly. Sony is just pissed that Microsoft now has the ability to make a money printing franchise exclusive if they choose to, but surely Sony will stand behind what they're suggesting is right and also release their IPs for Xbox, right? It's not like Sony has become known for shitty practices like putting flawed DRM onto consoles that will make even physical games unplayable and only keeping legacy console stores up because this was found out. /s
 
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And Sony isn't? How many studios has Sony bought again? How many Game IPs they own?

Why is that when Sony does it there is no problem but when Microsoft does it people cries to the heavens?
I literally criticized Sony too, please don't assume I haven't.
 

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Oh my fucking gawd, just put it on all systems, assholes... Switch included.
I feel the same way. Surely, some kind of agreement can be arranged?

I always feel that companies get too much into petty arguments and end up losing sight of what the end-user actually wants. While the console wars have pretty much died down, there's still a level of tension between companies - and even divisions of the same company - that hampers production and causes a lot of red tape and legal battles.

Ideally, what I would hope for is that companies work together somewhat. I'm not saying that they should become one giant monopoly, as for capitalism to work there needs to be some sort of competition, but it doesn't have to be cutthroat. Instead, companies should learn to resolve their differences and cater to the needs of other businesses by allowing their services and products to be distributed on each other's platforms, thus each company is able to cater well to each person's platform of choice.

However, while I hope for this, it doesn't mean that I don't see the reality. The reason Call of Duty is taking so long to come to the Nintendo Switch is because of the corporate heads mentioned in the article butting heads. Time will tell if they ever come to a resolution that both companies agree to, or if Call of Duty will be dropped altogether.
 

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