On January 18, 2022, Microsoft announced that it would be acquiring Activision Blizzard King in a deal valued at $68.7 billion. The acquisition was completed on March 9, 2023, making it the largest gaming acquisition in history.
The acquisition brings some of the most popular gaming franchises in the world to Microsoft’s portfolio, including Call of Duty, Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch, and Candy Crush. It also gives Microsoft access to Activision Blizzard’s extensive network of studios and developers, as well as its esports business.
In an article on Xbox Wire, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that the acquisition is “about bringing people together.” He also said that Microsoft is “committed to our journey for inclusion in every aspect of gaming, among both employees and players.”
Microsoft has not yet announced any specific plans for how it will integrate Activision Blizzard into its Xbox business. However, it has said that it will continue to support Activision Blizzard’s games on all platforms, including PlayStation and Nintendo Switch.
Here are some of the potential implications of the acquisition:
More games on Xbox Game Pass: Microsoft has said that it plans to bring Activision Blizzard’s games to Xbox Game Pass, its subscription service that gives players access to a library of over 100 games. This would give Xbox Game Pass subscribers access to some of the most popular games in the world, including Call of Duty, Warcraft, and Diablo.
More powerful Xbox consoles: Microsoft has also said that it plans to use Activision Blizzard’s expertise to develop more powerful Xbox consoles. This could lead to new consoles that are capable of running more demanding games and delivering better graphics and performance.
More innovative gaming experiences: Microsoft has said that it is committed to working with Activision Blizzard to create new and innovative gaming experiences. This could lead to new games that are built on the cloud or that use other new technologies.
Overall, the acquisition of Activision Blizzard by Microsoft is a major event in the gaming industry. It gives Microsoft access to some of the most popular gaming franchises in the world, as well as Activision Blizzard’s extensive network of studios and developers. It will be interesting to see how Microsoft integrates Activision Blizzard into its Xbox business and what new and innovative gaming experiences it creates as a result.
Additional information from the Xbox Wire article “Welcoming the Legendary Teams at Activision Blizzard King to Team Xbox”:
Microsoft is committed to treating every person with dignity and respect, and to extending its culture of proactive inclusion to the great teams across Activision Blizzard.
Microsoft believes that gaming is the most dynamic and exciting category in entertainment across all platforms today, and will play a key role in the development of metaverse platforms.
Microsoft also believes that creative success and autonomy go hand-in-hand with treating every person with dignity and respect, and holds all teams and all leaders to this commitment.
The fantastic franchises across Activision Blizzard will also accelerate Microsoft’s plans for Cloud Gaming, allowing more people in more places around the world to participate in the Xbox community using phones, tablets, laptops and other devices you already own.
Activision Blizzard games are enjoyed on a variety of platforms and Microsoft plans to continue to support those communities moving forward. As a company, Microsoft is committed to its journey for inclusion in every aspect of gaming, among both employees and players. Microsoft deeply values individual studio cultures.
Sources: Xbox Wire – Microsoft – Sportco