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Microsoft Commits To Bringing Call Of Duty To Nintendo Post-Activision Acquisition
In the wake of Microsoft’s ongoing acquisition of Activision Blizzard, one of the most contentious arguments against it has been Call of Duty’s continued presence on PlayStation platforms. Xbox head Phil Spencer has repeatedly promised that the juggernaut franchise will still appear on its main rival’s platforms, but that hasn’t stopped Sony from touting the loss of the series as anti-competitive to stop the deal from going through. After saying he had no problem keeping Call of Duty on Sony hardware for the long term, Spencer has now extended and formalized that promise to Nintendo and Valve.
Last night, Spencer announced on Twitter that Microsoft has entered a 10-year commitment to bring Call of Duty back to Nintendo. In a follow-up tweet, Spencer states the series will remain on Steam as well. Of course, all of this hinges on the approval of the publisher’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, which continues to be scrutinized in ongoing approval processes from government regulators.
Microsoft has entered into a 10-year commitment to bring Call of Duty to @Nintendo following the merger of Microsoft and Activision Blizzard King. Microsoft is committed to helping bring more games to more people – however they choose to play. @ATVI_AB— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) December 7, 2022
I'm also pleased to confirm that Microsoft has committed to continue to offer Call of Duty on @Steam simultaneously to Xbox after we have closed the merger with Activision Blizzard King. @ATVI_AB @ValveSoftware— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) December 7, 2022
Call of Duty has yet to appear on Switch, and the last entry to launch on a Nintendo platform was 2013’s Call of Duty: Ghosts, which appeared on Wii U. The series won't have a new entry in 2023, and by then the acquisition should be complete, assuming it's successful. Thus, it's unclear when we can expect to see Call of Duty return to the house of Mario. In contrast to Sony, Nintendo hasn't made much of a fuss about the Activision deal, and you could easily argue that Switch sales haven't suffered from the lack of Call of Duty's presence. Getting the franchise back certainly doesn't hurt, though.
In other recent Xbox news, the publisher announced it's raising the price of first-party Xbox Series X/S games to $70 in 2023.