Which Gaming Company Did Microsoft Buy?
Despite being best known for its software, Microsoft now has its fingers in many pies. Gaming is one of them, with the Xbox division aiming for hardcore gamers.
But getting there hasn’t been easy. The deal ran into opposition from rival Sony, and regulators around the world. The final hurdle was cleared Friday when Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority approved the purchase.
Gaming is a small part of Microsoft’s revenue and has been a slow-growing business. But Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella wanted to change that by acquiring one of the biggest gaming companies in the world. He asked Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick to meet him, and they agreed to discuss a possible acquisition.
The deal was announced in January 2022, and it was Microsoft’s largest purchase ever at the time. But antitrust regulators in the U.S. and Europe raised concerns about the merger. To placate them, Microsoft promised to make Call of Duty games available for free on competing consoles like Sony’s PlayStation and Nintendo Switch and made similar deals with cloud-gaming providers. These concessions quelled competition concerns, and the deal closed earlier on Friday.
Call of Duty
Call of Duty is one of the highest-grossing game franchises in North America. Its first release was in 2003 and since then, it has released a new game every year. The game series has become a cultural phenomenon and has inspired several spin-offs and expansions.
The latest game in the Call of Duty series, Black Ops 4, introduced a last-man-standing mode and saw Activision dip its toes into the battle royale genre. While this wasn’t the success that the devs had hoped for, it did help to revitalize the series.
The developer behind the Call of Duty games is Infinity Ward, which has changed names over time. Its other studio, Treyarch, makes games for the PlayStation and PC platforms. The company also makes a mobile version of its games.
Overwatch is a team-based multiplayer first-person shooter developed and published by Blizzard Entertainment. The game received universal acclaim upon release and has since become a major esport. Its cartoonish art style and diverse cast of characters have made it one of the most popular video games ever created.
The company’s stock has fallen by more than 13% after the scandal broke, and its CEO Bobby Kotick has come under fire for his responses to it. Despite this, Microsoft appears confident that the deal will go through.
The new 5v5 format has opened up many possibilities for the game, including introducing more tank play and making utility heroes like Doomfist more important. However, the introduction of role queues has led to long digital lines as players wait to play their favorite hero.
World of Warcraft
Although it’s not the first online role-playing game, World of Warcraft is one of the best. It overcomes many of the design issues that plagued its predecessors, resulting in an incredibly rich experience from minute to minute, hour to hour, and day to day.
The combat is fast and visceral, and it features a system that keeps players engaged even after countless hours of play. The game’s pacing is also superb, making it feel like you are constantly being rewarded for the time that you spend in the world.
In addition to the fast-paced combat, World of Warcraft has a wide variety of quests and areas to explore. It also offers a number of different races and classes, so you can find a character that fits your style perfectly.
Unlike the last few installments in the franchise, Battlefield 2042 forgoes a single-player campaign and focuses entirely on multiplayer. But the game still delivers plenty of action and spectacle, including chaotic vehicular blowouts and massive sandstorms.
The game also boasts some quality-of-life features, such as the ability to call in vehicles on the fly and a new tablet that allows you to respawn anywhere on the map. It’s an improvement over the clunky, inconsistent buddy-revive system that was in Battlefield V.
DICE has also cherry-picked elements from popular trends in hero shooters and battle royales. While some of those additions don’t necessarily fit with the underlying Battlefield formula, they add some gameplay variety to a franchise that needed it. Adding new specialists to the mix is a particularly smart move.