The UK Competition and Markets Authority has recommended launching a second stage investigation into Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, as it believes it could stifle competition in the video game industry in the region. Sony responded that it welcomes the announcement of a further investigation.
“Giving Microsoft control over Activision games such as Call of Duty, this deal will have serious negative consequences for gamers and the future of the gaming industry,” Sony said in a statement to GamesIndustry.biz . “We want to ensure that PlayStation gamers will continue to receive the highest quality of gameplay, and we appreciate the CMA’s attention to protecting gamers.”
This came after PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan last week called Xbox’s offer to extend the availability of Call of Duty on PlayStation platforms “inadequate.” Ryan says the extension will only last for three additional years after the existing agreements expire. It is reported that under current PlayStation contracts, three Call of Duty games remain to be released, including this year’s Modern Warfare 2.
Xbox’s Phil Spencer noted that he still wants Call of Duty to remain a multiplatform franchise, but it’s not known if it will be for an indefinite period. Xbox’s expansion offer for PlayStation indicates that the franchise could become exclusive to the Microsoft ecosystem eventually if the acquisition goes through.
Spencer also confirmed that future Call of Duty games will also arrive on Xbox Game Pass on the same day as on PlayStation. Thus, he claims, Call of Duty will become available to more players.
Every IGN Call of Duty Review
Despite the investigation, the Call of Duty series continues as Activision holds a Call of Duty Next event today to reveal more about this year’s release. The broadcast can be viewed on IGN.
George Young is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @yinyangfooey