Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard for $69 billion, one of the most expensive in tech history, has now closed. As the most expensive video game acquisition to date, this deal is poised to forever change the gaming industry. The acquisition faced hurdles, including difficulties in securing approval from the U.K.’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). To satisfy the CMA’s concerns, Microsoft granted Ubisoft cloud streaming rights for Activision Blizzard titles.
Originally announced in January 2022, the deal required approval from over 40 countries and regions to finalize. As a result, franchises such as Call of Duty, Overwatch, Diablo, World of Warcraft, and Candy Crush are now part of the Xbox portfolio.
The announcement was made by Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft Gaming, in a detailed post. “As one team, we’ll learn, innovate, and continue to deliver on our promise to bring the joy and community of gaming to more people,” said Spencer. “We’ll do this in a culture that strives to empower everyone to do their best work, where all people are welcome, and is centered on our ongoing commitment of Gaming for Everyone. We are intentional about inclusion in everything we do at Xbox – from our team to the products we make and the stories we tell, to the way our players interact and engage as a wider gaming community.”
The post also confirms that Microsoft is starting “the work to bring beloved Activision, Blizzard, and King franchises to Game Pass and other platforms.” It appears that it’s only a matter of time until Activision Blizzard titles become available on both Xbox and PC Game Pass.