Xbox chief Phil Spencer confirmed on a podcast Tuesday that the Xbox Game Pass will not feature any games from Activision Blizzard until next year, noting the regulatory hurdles behind Microsoft acquiring the gaming company hindered progress on bringing games from franchises like Call of Duty and Warcraft to the pass immediately.
“I know there will be some disappointment about that,” Spencer said on the podcast, calling the acquisition a long-term move that has Xbox “excited about the future.”
Games from highly popular franchises such as Call of Duty, Warcraft, Diablo and Overwatch will make their way to the pass “sometime in the course of next year,” according to a post from Activision Blizzard on X, formerly known as Twitter.
The pass, a subscription-based service that allows players to download a roster of select video games without having to purchase them, starts at $10 a month and goes up to $17 a month for its premium version.
The news likely breaks PC and Xbox users’ expectations of new games coming to the service, as Xbox added 20 games to the pass just a few days after Microsoft acquired Bethesda, the creators of the Elder Scrolls and Fallout franchises, in 2021 for $7.5 billion.
Call of Duty will remain on both Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation for at least the next 10 years thanks to a deal agreed upon by both companies in July.
The regulatory process Spencer noted was a lengthy one endured by Microsoft as it attempted to acquire Activision Blizzard over the course of more than a year. The Federal Trade Commission hindered the $69 billion acquisition for most of that time span, arguing such a deal would be anti-competitive. The FTC expressed concern that Microsoft would make some of the Activision Blizzard games exclusive to Xbox, removing games with millions of players from PlayStation. Microsoft finally secured the acquisition last week days after it was approved by the U.K.’s Competition and Markets Authority, the final regulatory holdout it had to clear. Microsoft is now the third-largest gaming company in the world by revenue after the acquisition, trailing Tencent and Sony.
The Post Xbox Game Pass Won’t Feature ‘Call Of Duty, ‘Warcraft’ And Other Activision Blizzard Games Until 2024 Originally Posted on www.forbes.com