Call of Duty: Xbox reaches an arrangement with Nintendo and Steam, while PlayStation hits rock bottom.

    Microsoft has agreed to a 10-year contract with Nintendo and Valve to deliver Call of Duty to Switch and Steam.

    Microsoft’s huge PR effort continues as the authorities approve its merger of Activision-Blizzard. Earlier this week, Microsoft published an op-ed in The Washington Post by Brad Smith that compared PlayStation to a DVD rental service in the age of Netflix. At the same time, the CWA, the first American video game union, issued an editorial in The Hill supporting the takeover and announcing a historic precedent with Bethesda.

    Call of Duty

    Microsoft wants to reassure authorities with very precise agreements on the subject of Call of Duty from now on.


    It’s Phil Spencer’s chance to speak out and defend the cause. The CEO of Microsoft Gaming had backed down a little on the matter, with the extent of the takeover now being hierarchically at the level of Microsoft management.

    He revealed the conclusion of an important deal with Valve and Nintendo on Twitter. The two contracts are distinct if you carefully study the text of the tweets.

    Concerning Nintendo, it is a matter of delivering the Call of Duty license to Nintendo systems for the next ten years. We clearly think about the Switch, but with such a lengthy time, we must also consider the manufacturer’s future console. In contrast, Phil Spencer suggests in the second tweet that Xbox is dedicated to publishing Call of Duty titles simultaneously on Xbox and Steam.

    Of course, all of this is contingent on Microsoft gaining control of Activision-Blizzard, and thus on the authorities agreeing to the takeover.


    As a result, we understand that in the case of Nintendo, a simultaneous release with Xbox and Steam is not required. In fact, Microsoft does not even commit to producing the same Call of Duty titles that it does on other platforms in this tweet.

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    The contract signed with Nintendo is obviously more extensive than the transcript in Phil Spencer’s tweet. However, it is also a public commitment in which each word is significant. Similarly, if it commits to provide Call of Duty at Nintendo for ten years, it does not commit to offering every episode.

    For example, releasing the Call of Duty Mobile game for Nintendo Switch and keeping it updated for the next ten years would correspond to the contract outlined in the tweet. If we envision the key episodes of the franchise landing on Switch, we can thank the cloud for that. This method is being used by an increasing number of cross-platform titles for the Switch version.

    For Microsoft, this is a significant compromise in order to win the authorities’ approval. Indeed, Microsoft has frequently made a comparison between Call of Duty and Minecraft in its tactics since the start of the takeover effort.

    It’s a win-win situation for the tech titan: it’s sure to increase its income significantly with the success of Switch while also pushing its Game Pass on its own platforms. This deal finally prompted him to find a new source of cash in order to secure a flagship license. Worse has previously been regarded as a restriction.


    This alliance with Nintendo and Valve is mostly a political ploy to corner Sony.

    The PlayStation maker may no longer openly express concern about an Xbox exclusivity for Call of Duty endangering its gaming platform. With this reversal, Microsoft hopes to portray Sony as the industry’s bad student: in a position of strength, but refusing to mature into a video game Netflix. To safeguard its position, Sony would dishonestly reject the takeover.

    Microsoft, as has been revealed publicly multiple times, offered the same deal to Sony.

    Phil Spencer goes into further detail on PlayStation in an interview with Bloomberg :

    From our perspective, it’s clear that they’re spending more time with the regulators than with us trying to get this deal done.

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