Microsoft is buying Activision Blizzard

Are Activision Blizzard games going to be Xbox exclusive?

Earlier this year, on the 18th of January, Microsoft published an announcement that they will be acquiring Activision Blizzard for a whopping $68.7 billion. This makes Microsoft the third largest gaming company in the world, just behind Tencent and Sony. For everyone, this news came as a shock. However, if we look at the events that have happened last year with Activision Blizzard, this giant shift in the gaming industry is not surprising at all. 

Activision Blizzard and its big list of problems

On the 20th of July 2021, California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a lawsuit against Activision Blizzard. Allegedly the workplace at the company was very toxic towards women. A few female employees even went out with allegations of sexual assault. Click here to learn about the messy situation in detail.

After the lawsuit was made public, Blizzard didn’t take it well. Wall Street Journal published an article exposing Activision CEO Bobby Kotick, claiming he was made aware of the toxic workplace culture and didn’t do anything about it. During this whole fiasco, a voice message of Bobby Kotick threatening to kill his personal assistant was also made public. He settled this in court later on and his legal team has stated that Bobby ‘Regrets the incident.’

However, this isn’t all there is to Bobby Kotick. While he himself earns 115 million dollars a year, a lot of his employees sleep in their cars because of their low wages. You might be thinking, maybe he deserves that money? His greatest idea and I quote was ‘’Make more Call of Duty’’. Even so, Microsoft has decided to keep Bobby Kotick as the CEO, for now. 

Microsoft and its possible future problems with Activision Blizzard

The price for which Microsoft has bought Activision Blizzard is pretty high. Firstly, with the purchase, they get studio King. King is the developer of Candy Crush, Bubble Witch Saga, Pet Rescue Saga, and many other mobile games. That means that Microsoft will expand into the mobile gaming world, especially in Asia, where they struggled to get users. 

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On the other hand, there are many possible drawbacks for Microsoft. Activision was built on yearly Call of Duty releases, which now might not be the case. Great news for the developers, not so much to the shareholders. Other than that, World of Warcraft has been gradually falling down in terms of active subscriptions and Starcraft is pretty much dead.  Overwatch 2 has been moved to be released in 2022. All in all, it seems like studio King was of main interest for Microsoft.

What does this mean to Sony Entertainment?

When the news broke out, many Playstation fans were quite upset. Activision Blizzard makes games that people want to play, Call of Duty for example. Diablo 4 is coming out on consoles, and franchises such as Spyro and Crash Bandicoot, which had their starts on the Playstation, might now be exclusive for Xbox. Phil Spencer took it to Twitter to address the rumors. He stated that they intend to keep Call of Duty on Playstation and that they will honor all existing contracts with Activision Blizzard. 

Closing thoughts

With a lot of hard work and changes, Microsoft could truly transform Activision Blizzard into something better. They have big funds that could in return make an even bigger profit. The change in leadership will probably result in a better workplace for all the employees, which then might lead to better games. All we have right now is to wait and hope.

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Part time Web Designer and amateur muscian/artist. Plus a contributor at BIZZNERD
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