Microsoft has told the UK regulator that it does not intend to raise the price of Xbox Game Pass and offered COD games on PS Plus at launch.
We recently announced that today I would be Intense fight between Sony and Microsoft over Call of Duty. This situation is invited by the CMA, which will publish its final decision to end of april, but Microsoft is already trying to convince the British regulator by offering Sony an irresistible offer. In addition, they also talked about Xbox Game Pass and a possible price increase.
The British regulator said that the purchase of Activision Blizzard could reduce competition and suggested divestment of Call of Duty. Today we know that Sony doesn’t trust Microsoft since the Japanese company considers that it could receive Call of Duty games with many bugs and errors. However, those in Redmond have already responded.
Sony has sent a document to the CMA expressing its concerns about the purchase of Activision Blizzard. In that report there is a section on the “different mechanisms available to Microsoft to avoid its obligations” in relation to the Call of Duty franchise (pages 6 and 7). One of them is to receive a version of Call of Duty full of bugs and errors in order to “harm PlayStation’s competitiveness”.
“For example, Microsoft could release a PlayStation version of Call of Duty where bugs and bugs appear after subsequent updates. Even if these flaws could be detected quickly, any solution would probably come too late, and by then, the gaming community would have lost confidence in the PlayStation as a place to play Call of Duty,” PlayStation told the regulator.
sony believes that Microsoft will prioritize its Xbox versions over the PlayStation ones: “After the transaction, Microsoft will have to make decisions about the support it will provide to develop any PlayStation version of Call of Duty. Even if Microsoft acts in good faith, it would be encouraged to support and prioritize the development of the Xbox version of the game , for example using your best engineers and more resources”, says the Japanese company.
Furthermore, Sony believes that Microsoft “has shown no real commitment reach a result in the negotiation” and that the company “postponed the matter, only committed itself when it realized that the regulatory landscape was darkening and preferred to speak in the media than to commit to the SIE”.
There are still more statements from PlayStation: “This agreement does not adequately protect PlayStation’s access to Call of Duty or the competition. Rather, it reveals Microsoft’s lack of commitment to ensuring full and equal access to Call of Duty, confirms the risks of a behavior-based solution outlined in the Guidelines, and reinforces SIE’s belief that Microsoft intends to use Call of Duty strategically to dominate the gaming industry“Says Sony whose statements were collected from the VGC.
“If Microsoft were to renege on its commitment, it would probably only would risk paying a fine (possibly many years later). But rivals’ access to Call of Duty would remain immediately closed, which would irreparably impair its ability to compete and would end up hurting consumers,” notes Sony. “Quickly detecting any deviation from a technical or graphical quality compromise and ensuring compliance would be a challenge.”
“In fact, as seen in Modern Warfare 2, Call of Duty is most often purchased in just the first few weeks of its launch. If you knew that game performance on PlayStation is worse than Xbox, Call of Duty players may decide to switch to Xboxfor fear of playing your favorite game in a second-rate or less competitive venue.”
In short, Sony believes that Microsoft will increase the price of Call of Duty on PlayStation consoles, reduce quality and experience on that platform, ignoring PS5 features (DualSense, SSD, and so on), restricting investment in Call of Duty multiplayer on PlayStation, and allowing games to be available only on Xbox Game Pass.
A Microsoft spokesperson issued a statement via Eurogamer and it states the following: “Since the CMA issued its interim findings, we have offered solutions that address their concerns and enhance the benefits of the deal for UK gamers and game developers. includes a guarantee of parity between Xbox and PlayStation in access to Call of Duty and legally binding commitments to ensure that Call of Duty is available to at least 150 million players more on other consoles and cloud streaming platforms once the deal closes,” the spokesperson said.
“The decision now rests with the CMA on whether you will block this deal and protect Sonydominant leader in the market, or will think of solutions that make more games available to more players”, says the representative. Finally, it is worth remembering that the decision of the British regulator will be announced next April 26thone day after that of the European Commission.