Okay, so this idea sounds crazy, but the whole situation is actually quite real. More insane the longer things go on, so I’m not going to rule out anything when it comes to Microsoft attempting to secure this Activision Blizzard deal in the wake of Sony-fueled regulator pushback.
The current situation is that the FTC is suing to block the deal in part because they believe Microsoft misled regulators and said or heavily implied they wouldn’t need to take Bethesda games like Starfield or Elder Scrolls exclusive when that deal was being proposed, even though that’s eventually what they did. The EU regulators seem to dispute that, saying Microsoft never specifically promised that, but it’s something the FTC seems concerned with anyway, and has been an undercurrent of this whole case. It’s possible that huge games such as Elder Scrolls or Starfield will be made. You can find it here been made exclusive in the wake of a multibillion dollar acquisition, why couldn’t that happen with Call of Duty, even if Microsoft says it won’t?
My wild idea: Microsoft may change their mind and promise that Starfield will be available on PlayStation. It may not be available on the same day as its Xbox Game Pass launch but Microsoft promises that Starfield will be available on PlayStation if Sony allows it.
This sounds insane? You’re wrong. These are just some of the things Microsoft is trying to do to appease regulators. Microsoft signed 10 year contracts with Nintendo about Call of Duty and offered the same to Sony. These are things that just don’t happen in the industry, and if This is the move that would convince regulators Microsoft is not trying to monopolize huge games with their mega-studio purchases, I’m not going to say it’s impossible.
Microsoft, of course, is under no obligation to do anything remotely like this, as a core pushback to Sony’s “concerns” is that Sony has been built on a huge roster of exclusive games for decades now and they’re coming off as pretty hypocritical. But Microsoft is showing they’ll pull out all the stops to get this deal done, and if this means sacrificing the exclusivity of one or two games from their $7 billion deal to salvage their $70 billion deal, maybe they’ll do it.
What would…happen if Microsoft announced they’d release Starfield on PlayStation? Would PlayStation actually accept, knowing this would help Microsoft’s acquisition case? But also knowing it would be a huge dent in Microsoft’s roster, and Starfield would subsequently probably find a lot more players on PlayStation? This would make Xbox players furious. Or would they be satisfied that at least they’re getting Starfield “free” with Game Pass while Sony players have to pay $70?
Now, what do you think? Probability To happen? No. But I also don’t want to say it’s totally impossible given how wild things have already gotten here, and how much Microsoft has been willing to bend over backwards to get this deal done so far. We’ll see…
Follow me on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook Instagram. Get my weekly round-up newsletter with free content God is everywhere.
Grab my sci-fi books Herokiller series The Earthborn Trilogy.