By: Adam Button
Microsoft is buying game studio Activision Blizzard for close to $69 billion. With the whole transaction being finalized around July of 2023, what does this mean for the future of the gaming industry?
Starting, Microsoft acquiring Activision Blizzard seems to be another stop on their path to becoming a gaming powerhouse. Back in March of 2021, Microsoft acquired Bethesda (known for series like Fallout and Elder Scrolls). Even with Microsoft’s purchase, the company made it clear that they would continue to honor the business plans that were made with rival company Sony before said purchase.
With this Microsoft can compete against Sony on exclusive content for their respective platforms. In this era of gaming where cross-platform connectivity is included in most big titles, having a solid list of publishers to pump out exclusive games will help market one console over the other.
When news of Microsoft taking control of Activision Blizzard hit the ears of gamers, this caused some panic among the Playstation users. Activision Blizzard produced series and games such as Call of Duty, Overwatch, and League of Legends. With the purchase, Microsoft could continue those franchises with exclusivity to the Xbox and PC markets if it was desired.
However, that is not Microsoft’s plan. If they were to follow that model, they would be sued for antitrust laws violations, something the United States is trying to crack down on more. The plan they have instead is to target where the meat of the videogame market is currently; Mobile gaming.
Microsoft, while also planning to build up a line of exclusive content, bought Activision Blizzard to further develop its mobile gaming market. Currently, console and pc gaming are unavailable for a lot of the world’s gaming population. With 95% of gaming coming out of the mobile market.
This includes games like Candy Crush, a game Activision Blizzard owns, but also more console-like games like Genshin Impact. Microsoft envisions a future of mobile gaming, and they think Activision Blizzard can help make that future a reality.
Now hopefully with the acquisition, they can iron out all of the kinks Activision Blizzard has as a company with the recent suites of sexual workplace harassment.
Image Credit: The Verge