As Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision continues to take shape, several developments have been observed in recent weeks. The project has also been subjected to a greater amount of scrutiny from rival companies and organizations. As the EU begins its investigation, it has reportedly sent questionnaires to game developers asking for their perspectives on the impact of this acquisition on Xbox’s competitors.
As reported by Reuters, the EU has sent out a questionnaire containing over 100 questions to game developers, publishers, and distributors asking whether the deal would affect their bargaining power regarding the terms for selling console and PC games via Microsoft’s Xbox and its game streaming service Game Pass.
Furthermore, it wishes to know whether there would be “sufficient alternative suppliers” in the event that Xbox decides to turn Activision’s games into exclusives. Among the questions asked in the questionnaire is how important Call of Duty titles are to other console developers, third-party service providers, and cloud gaming providers. In addition, the study also seeks to determine which of PlayStation, GeForce Now, Stadia, Amazon Luna, and Facebook Gaming would be the most attractive after the acquisition. Respondents have until October 10 to respond
Sony, one of Xbox’s biggest rivals, has been particularly vocal in its opposition to this agreement. PlayStation’s major concern is the future of Call of Duty titles on PlayStation, which still hangs in the balance, because the deal proposed by Xbox was deemed “inadequate”. SIE’s Jim Ryan also reportedly flew to Europe recently in order to persuade the EU to stop this deal from being completed. Sony also voiced its opinion on the matter. In this matter, the UK’s CMA is currently conducting a second round of investigation and has set a deadline of March 2023 for a decision.
Despite some of the more recent backlash against the situation, Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, is confident that the deal will be completed. Brazil also approved this deal, while Xbox also found support in Meta.