The feud between industry heavyweights continues as Microsoft accuses Sony of blocking Xbox Game Pass on PlayStation consoles. All this comes in the wake of Microsoft’s troubled purchase of Activision Blizzard.
Despite the misgivings of some industry workers and fans, Xbox Game Pass has been a great success. This Xbox alternative to offer a large catalog of games at a reduced price has been successful worldwide. In fact, Xbox Game Pass is making Microsoft almost $3 billion a year. But despite Phil Spencer’s desire to make Game Pass part of all platforms, Sony has other ideas.
This is what Microsoft has let us know through a statement to the UK CMA. In the midst of the battle for the approval of the purchase of Activision Blizzard, they have dropped this bombshell. It’s a way to finally convince the CMA that the Activision Blizzard acquisition is good for the industry, quite the opposite of what Sony has argued in recent months.
Bold or desperate?
Microsoft’s purchase of Activision Blizzard goes beyond the amount of money invested. The main entity affected by this purchase are not the developers or indie companies in the industry, but Sony. It is well known that PlayStation had not only exclusive games from this group of companies but also a lot of exclusive in-game content. A clear example of this is the exclusivity in the release of Call of Duty games. They also had exclusive deals with Destiny long before Sony bought Bungie.
Therefore, Sony after many statements has asked the UK regulator CMA to stop the closing of the Microsoft deal with Activision Blizzard. Sony argues that it could be a case of monopoly by Xbox that would seriously affect the video game industry. Even so, Microsoft has done everything in its power to show (or spin) that this purchase is positive for the industry.
One such move was presented yesterday. Microsoft has let it be known that Sony has blocked the arrival of Xbox Game Pass on PlayStation. Of course, the thought of Xbox Game Pass on PlayStation is almost unthinkable. However, it’s an alternative to the big problem posed by Sony’s purchase of Activision Blizzard since many games made by Activision Blizzard will be released exclusively for Game Pass.
In a statement, Microsoft comments: “Again, this increased competition has not been welcomed by the market leader Sony, which has elected to protect its revenues from sales of newly released games, rather than offer gamers the choice of accessing them via its subscription, PlayStation Plus.”
Still, Microsoft has confirmed that PlayStation players will still be able to get their hands on Activision Blizzard games, even though they are Game Pass exclusives first.