In an effort to smooth the way for regulatory approval of its pending acquisition of gaming giant Activision Blizzard, Microsoft has offered a series of concessions to competitors in recent weeks. Among these were a deal offered to Sony that would keep Call of Duty games on PlayStation for the next 10 years, which was first reported in November. (Previously, Microsoft offered a three-year deal at which Sony balked, calling it “inadequate on many levels”).
Microsoft reached a similar agreement just last week with Nintendo and Valve (for its Steam platform) immediately before the FTC announced it planned to file a lawsuit to block the $68 billion deal.
Thanks to a new report from Bloomberg, we now know that included in the 10-year offer to Sony were rights to put Call of Duty games on PlayStation Plus. Which, one has to admit would undeniably have been a major boon for Sony’s recently revamped gaming subscription service. It also provides a stark contrast to Sony’s practice of paying developers to keep their games off Xbox Game Pass, as was revealed back in August.
At any rate, Microsoft’s buyout of Activision Blizzard now faces another big roadblock with the FTC lawsuit, and the outcome seems very much anyone’s guess at this point.