According to recent reports, Microsoft has extended an offer to Sony that would keep the Call of Duty franchise exclusive to the PlayStation platform for the next ten years. Microsoft consoles disclosed to the New York Times on November 11 that it had presented Sony with a 10-year contract offer. Here are the complete details:
Microsoft said that on Nov. 11 it offered Sony a 10-year deal to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation. Sony declined to comment on the offer.
Last month, Mr. Spencer and other Microsoft executives brought an Xbox, a PlayStation, a Nintendo Switch and other devices to a meeting with regulators in London, where they showed off Call of Duty and other games to illustrate a dynamic market, people familiar with the visit said.
Regulators are also worried what the deal might mean for the future, when cloud computing lets people stream sophisticated games to various devices, including mobile phones.”
Microsoft has been fighting to have its massive contract with the makers of Call of Duty, Warcraft, Candy Crush, and other well-known games approved by authorities on both sides of the border. Microsoft has said that the transaction is mainly focused on mobile gaming, an area where Microsoft has a limited presence in a sector that is dominated by Chinese behemoths like Tencent.
After Sony’s existing deal with Activision expires, which is expected to happen after the release of a new game from Black Ops developer Treyarch in 2024, Xbox boss Phil Spencer stated in September that Microsoft had committed to making Call of Duty available on PlayStation for “several more years.” Microsoft’s plan to maintain the Call of Duty franchise on PlayStation platforms was criticized openly by PlayStation chief Jim Ryan, who wants access to future Call of Duty games on similar terms and indefinitely.
Since then, UK and European authorities have turned their preliminary probes into more thorough ones, and Microsoft has said that it is open to making adjustments about the future of the Call of Duty franchise. Microsoft’s chief of gaming reportedly referred to the 10-year promise on The Verge’s Decoder podcast:
This idea that we would write a contract that says the word ‘forever’ in it, I think, is a little bit silly, but to make a longer-term commitment that Sony would be comfortable with, [that] regulators would be comfortable with, I have no issue with that at all.”
Microsoft would have the resources it needs to introduce Xbox games and Xbox developers to a new audience on phones and tablets if it merged with Activision. There’s no reason to think that the console market will be affected by the booming mobile gaming market in the next few years. Mobile gaming has already established itself as a dominant force in several large nations. To achieve this, Microsoft is working to integrate games like Call of Duty Mobile while also bolstering its nascent subscription service Xbox Game Pass with a wealth of fresh content.