Microsoft signs binding, 10-year CoD deal with Nintendo ahead of EU hearing

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has also sued tech giant Microsoft from acquiring leading video game developer Activision Blizzard

IANS San Francisco

Photo: Bloomberg

Microsoft President Brad Smith on Tuesday announced that the tech giant has signed a binding, 10-year contract with Japanese gaming giant Nintendo to bring Xbox games including Call of Duty (CoD) to Nintendo's gamers.

The announcement came ahead of a hearing in the European Union (EU) where Microsoft will argue its case with regulators to give its $69 billion acquisition of Call of Duty publisher Activision Blizzard a green signal.

"We've now signed a binding 10-year contract to bring Xbox games to Nintendo's gamers. This is just part of our commitment to bring Xbox games and Activision titles like Call of Duty to more players on more platforms," Smith tweeted.

The Call of Duty game will be available to Nintendo players the same day as Xbox, with full feature and content parity, "so they can experience Call of Duty just as Xbox and PlayStation gamers enjoy Call of Duty".

Microsoft said it is committed to providing long-term equal access to Call of Duty to other gaming platforms, "bringing more choice to more players and more competition to the gaming market".

The EU hearing this week is expected to be attended by representatives from Microsoft including Brad Smith and Xbox head Phil Spencer, as well as Activision CEO Bobby Kotick, and Sony's Jim Ryan.

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Earlier this month, Microsoft formally received an antitrust warning from the European Union over its bid to acquire Activision Blizzard.

According to a report in Politico citing sources, the notice mentioned that EU officials "laid out the reasons why the deal could threaten fair competition on the video game market".

A Microsoft spokesperson said that they are committed to solutions and finding a path forward for this deal. "We are listening carefully to the European Commission's concerns and are confident we can address them," the company spokesperson had said.

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has also sued tech giant Microsoft from acquiring leading video game developer Activision Blizzard.



(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Feb 21 2023 | 4:45 PM IST

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