Phil Spencer, executive vice president of gaming at Microsoft, tweeted that Xbox will “honor all existing agreements” in regard to Activision Blizzard titles that are already multiplatform. Spencer specifically notes that Microsoft hopes to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation, though his comments are notably ambiguous.
Had good calls this week with leaders at Sony. I confirmed our intent to honor all existing agreements upon acquisition of Activision Blizzard and our desire to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation. Sony is an important part of our industry, and we value our relationship.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) January 20, 2022
Early this week, Microsoft announced its intentions to acquire Activision Blizzard for nearly $70 billion. This acquisition news came after months of controversy surrounding Activision-Blizzard’s toxic work practices. This deal would mean that iconic IPs such as Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, and even The Lost Vikings will fall under the ownership of Microsoft.
That brings up questions when it comes to console platforms, as the Call of Duty series is available on both Xbox and PlayStation consoles. With Microsoft acquiring the company, many people were wondering where this leaves Activision Blizzard games that can be found on Sony’s family of consoles. Spencer’s comments address those concern — up to a point.
“Had good calls this week with leaders at Sony,” Spencer tweeted. “I confirmed our intent to honor all existing agreements upon acquisition of Activision Blizzard and our desire to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation. Sony is an important part of our industry, and we value our relationship.”
Spencer seemingly confirms that Call of Duty will stay on PlayStation, however, his careful wording leads to more questions. Spencer saying that Call of Duty will stay on PlayStation could possibly mean that Microsoft will not remove Call of Duty games, like Call of Duty: Warzone, found on the PlayStation Store. It doesn’t confirm if future games will remain on the console.
The tweet singles out the Call of Duty series, but doesn’t mention any other multiplatform games from Activision Blizzard, like the Diablo and Tony Hawk series. That could be seen as a sign that Call of Duty’s Sony support won’t extend to other franchises.
If the past is any indication, interested parties could look at how Microsoft is handling Bethesda to find the answers they are looking for. When Microsoft acquired ZeniMax Media, Spencer stated that some games will still be on PlayStation. It was later revealed that Starfield and Elders Scroll VI would be console exclusives for the Xbox family. This could be the future for Activision Blizzard games, where games with existing commitments to Sony will come out on PlayStation, but everything after that will not.
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