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VGC: UK competition watchdog says it could expand Xbox Activision merger inquiry over competition concerns

GHG

Member
I’m starting to hope this deal doesn’t go through just for the absolute melt downs it would cause on here :messenger_tears_of_joy:

Well, that and because I think $70b on Activision is an obscene waste of money.

I actually hope it does go though because of the colossal waste of money it will be.

Things ebb and flow, the idea that COD will still be dominant by the time cloud subscription services are the primary (*cough* only) way to play is an interesting one considering the fact that the franchise is experiencing falling playerbases YoY.

But I think if it does get blocked, it will be more to set an example rather than for the implications of the deal itself - you can't just buy your way to the top while creating insurmountable barrier for your competitors and any other potential market entrants.

It's a creative industry, the household names we all play today started with one line of code - get creative instead of throwing daddy's cash around.
 

bitbydeath

Gold Member
They're just making a public show of it. It will be approved.

 

C2brixx

Member
Came here to post this.

This a grown ass mad in his 40's (50's?). Don't be like Tom Warren. Never be like this...

Did you read the CMA ruling? That's is basically the position they are taking. They are arguing that Sony's market leading position should be protected. Which is a weird argument for a competition regulator to be making. Regulators should be about increasing competition and lowering prices for consumers. Which Microsoft putting more games on Gamepass does for consumers. It's odd for them to be caring Sony's water when Sony are raising their console price and have increased game prices to $70. Something smells funny about UK CMA postition. Its almost looking corrupt.
 

Elios83

Member
And some people thought the acquisition would be approved in August :messenger_grinning_sweat:
UK and Europe have a long history of fining Microsoft for its abuse of dominant position in the PC market, they're gonna be extra scrupulous with this.
In any case I doubt the deal won't be approved, this is only going to delay things or worst case the deal will be approved under regulatory conditions Microsoft will have to sign.
 
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onesvenus

Member
The deal has to be approved by all regulatory bodies for it to go through.
That's not true at all. If Microsoft wanted they could go through even if some regulatory body says no by not selling in that country.
I'm sure Microsoft wouldn't do that but it's not true that a deal can only go through if all the regulatory bodies approve it.
 

Ozriel

Member
But I think if it does get blocked, it will be more to set an example rather than for the implications of the deal itself - you can't just buy your way to the top while creating insurmountable barrier for your competitors and any other potential market entrants.

It's a creative industry, the household names we all play today started with one line of code - get creative instead of throwing daddy's cash around.

The games aren’t going to be exclusive and they’re starting from a much worse position than PlayStation in the UK, so anyone would be hard pressed to prove that this is ‘buying their way to the top’.

Additionally, I don’t see how it’s any more ‘buying up success’ than stuff like the financial deals to keep mainline Final Fantasy games exclusive to PlayStation, for example.


Using money from other Microsoft divisions to fund Xbox isn’t a red flag, either. Microsoft money purchased Mojang, and yet Minecraft, Minecraft Dungeons, Minecraft Legends et Al are fully multiplatform.
 
LOL

The explanation is that they are afraid Xbox starts doing what PlayStation is already been doing (while having a bigger share mind you) for years LMAO

The PlayStation lobbying is pretty high in this one.
Call of duty being in game pass will be a huge blow to Sony. People willingly buy COD at full price every year. Sony would be insane to not fight and avoid letting that happen.

But with that being said, as a game pass ultimate subscriber, of course I want Xbox to win this deal lol.
 

graywolf323

Member
If Microsoft were exclusivity minded we would’ve seen it by now. We have years of evidence that shows they can’t win that game even when they’re well prepared with meaningful games like Halo and Gears. Seems more likely that they just want control over the industry even if it’s through broad ownership. The games will stay on PlayStation.
except we have seen it? Starfield isn’t coming to PlayStation
 

Menzies

Member
Maybe I’m one-eyed here, but I’m not seeing the huge gotcha here, when factoring in context.

At the time Microsoft bought Bethesda, Sony had a huge gulf in their favour of first-party studios. So I see this ‘oh they bought Bethesda and made their games exclusive’ argument as Sony and their fans being some kind of protected species, where what’s good for the goose suddenly isn’t good for the gander.
 

Banjo64

cumsessed
Did you read the CMA ruling? That's is basically the position they are taking. They are arguing that Sony's market leading position should be protected. Which is a weird argument for a competition regulator to be making. Regulators should be about increasing competition and lowering prices for consumers. Which Microsoft putting more games on Gamepass does for consumers. It's odd for them to be caring Sony's water when Sony are raising their console price and have increased game prices to $70. Something smells funny about UK CMA postition. Its almost looking corrupt.
Could an argument be made for introducing a license to post comments online? Reading this, I’d say yes.
 
Xbox’s second largest market is too small for MS to care about? :messenger_tears_of_joy:

Xbox console.
Xbox gaming with Bethedsa and Activison is not the UK anymore.


Also it's easy to shut down any concerns with one sentence by Microsoft.
"We will release EVERY single new Microsoft game on any competing platform and paying royalties, if they allow our subscription service on said platform. If we do not comply, we will pay a fine 10bn €"



It's such a clear cut case.
 

SenjutsuSage

Halo TV Series Promoter - Live from: Reach
Maybe I’m one-eyed here, but I’m not seeing the huge gotcha here, when factoring in context.

At the time Microsoft bought Bethesda, Sony had a huge gulf in their favour of first-party studios. So I see this ‘oh they bought Bethesda and made their games exclusive’ argument as Sony and their fans being some kind of protected species, where what’s good for the goose suddenly isn’t good for the gander.

Precisely. They also make zero mention of Microsoft saying they would never make Bethesda games exclusive, much less Starfield or Elder Scrolls 6. It just comes with the territory that when you acquire something you will naturally want to use it to enhance your own product and service offering. I would question Microsoft's sanity if they chose NOT to make megatons like Starfield and Elder Scrolls 6 exclusive, along with other big upcoming Bethesda games.
 

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
But I think if it does get blocked, it will be more to set an example rather than for the implications of the deal itself - you can't just buy your way to the top while creating insurmountable barrier for your competitors and any other potential market entrants.


Sony has acquired 9 gaming studios in the last year and a half. Embracer double that or more.
 

GHG

Member
All this proves is that @charlieINTEL (and you, and GHG GHG ) apparently can't read.

They are talking about the "approach" Microsoft have taken to previous acquisitions.

What's the difference here?

Spencer then noted that the deal was “not done to take games away from another player base like that”. He added: “Nowhere in the documentation that we put together was: ‘How do we keep other players from playing these games?’ We want more people to be able to play games, not fewer people to be able to go play games.”

Same shit, different day.
 

Menzies

Member
Studios != publishers.
Bungie is a publisher I think.

But what’s the difference between 9 separate studios and 1 publisher with 6 studios? Less head count in sales and marketing? It can have the same impact.
 
Studios != publishers.
The end effect is the same in both cases, the IP and development staff shifts to new management . You simply seem to have a problem with the fact that Sony can only (so far) afford to do piecemeal purchases of individual studios while Microsoft has the resources to purchase entire treasure-troves of studios and IP by going after publishers.
 

bitbydeath

Gold Member
Only in your dreams. This deal was a done deal before it touched the regulators. I'll be back here to tell you the same thing when it ultimately clears prior to June 30th, 2023.
They don’t make any games I’m interested in, so I don’t care either way, your quote just reminded me of The Simpsons.
 

GHG

Member
Yup the poor PlayStation players are still waiting for Deathloop or Ghostwire:Tokyo meanwhile xbox players have been enjoying them for ages. Do we really want the same gatekeeping to happen for Activision titles.

You'll get them eventually, that's how timed exclusives work.

Also to quote Phil, there are currently multiple devices you can play those games on. Even before it arrives on xbox you have multiple options, so I don't see what the problem is.

The end effect is the same in both cases, the IP and development staff shifts to new management . You simply seem to have a problem with the fact that Sony can only (so far) afford to do piecemeal purchases of individual studios while Microsoft has the resources to purchase entire treasure-troves of studios and IP by going after publishers.

Mr salty, I don't care whether or not Sony do or don't aquire studios or not. It doesn't effect me in any way since I have the devices necessary to play every game out there with the exception of Nintendo games. What it comes down to is whether or not people are being honest with their words and intentions, which Phil never is. You might see him as your cool executive mate, but unfortunately I don't share the same sentiment. I'm clearly not the only one either since the regulators outside of his company's home country can also see through the bullshit.

Bungie is a publisher I think.

But what’s the difference between 9 separate studios and 1 publisher with 6 studios? Less head count in sales and marketing? It can have the same impact.

Bungie were an independent studio who also self published. They didn't publish games other than their own, nor did they own any other studios under their umbrella. Maybe you were being sarcastic, but there is nothing equivalent about Bethesda/Activision and Bungie.

And are we going to also pretend that Microsoft are only purchasing this one publisher? This is their second publisher purchase in as many years and they have also purchased a number of individual studios. Their spend far outstrips anyone else in the industry at the moment when it comes to purchases for the xbox division.
 
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RoadHazard

Gold Member
If Microsoft were exclusivity minded we would’ve seen it by now. We have years of evidence that shows they can’t win that game even when they’re well prepared with meaningful games like Halo and Gears. Seems more likely that they just want control over the industry even if it’s through broad ownership. The games will stay on PlayStation.

But the games aren't staying on PlayStation. We're already seeing that with Bethesda. Maybe COD will, but most of them won't.
 
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poppabk

Member
You'll get them eventually, that's how timed exclusives work.

Also to quote Phil, there are currently multiple devices you can play those games on. Even before it arrives on xbox you have multiple options, so I don't see what the problem is.
I don't have an Xbox I only game on PC, but will have to wait for those games to come to gamepass. It just seems ironic that MS can't even put their Bethesda games on their console or on their subscription service because of Sony (who are putting them on their subscription service) but the Bethesda acquisition is being listed as an example of games being restricted from PlayStation users.
 

Menzies

Member
You'll get them eventually, that's how timed exclusives work.

Also to quote Phil, there are currently multiple devices you can play those games on. Even before it arrives on xbox you have multiple options, so I don't see what the problem is.



Mr salty, I don't care whether or not Sony do or don't aquire studios or not. It doesn't effect me in any way since I have the devices necessary to play every game out there with the exception of Nintendo games. What it comes down to is whether or not people are being honest with their words and intentions, which Phil never is. You might see him as your cool executive mate, but unfortunately I don't share the same sentiment. I'm clearly not the only one either since the regulators outside of his company's home country can also see through the bullshit.



Bungie were an independent studio who also self published. They didn't publish games other than their own, nor did they own any other studios under their umbrella. Maybe you were being sarcastic, but there is nothing equivalent about Bethesda/Activision and Bungie.

And are we going to also pretend that Microsoft are only purchasing this one publisher? This is their second publisher purchase in as many years and they have also purchased a number of individual studios. Their spend far outstrips anyone else in the industry at the moment when it comes to purchases for the xbox division.
I agree with what you’ve said there.

I don’t agree with the blanket statement that multiple studio acquisitions can’t be just as meaningful, impactful and have the same net effect as a publisher relevant to the competition.
 

John Wick

Member
Think the CMA have read the situation perfectly, I am wondering what concessions Microsoft/Xbox are willing to make.

We already know that multiplatform access is one but I am actually wondering about inclusion of subscription services and how that looks now.
Yet there are people on here convinced MS will move onto another big publisher like EA or Take Two. It ain't happening after ABK.
 

GHG

Member
I don't have an Xbox I only game on PC, but will have to wait for those games to come to gamepass.

Happy Big Brother GIF by MOODMAN


No you don't.



Both available for less than half a year of PC gamepass. If you want to put arbitrary rules around how you spend your money but then want to blame others then that's on you.

You have the option to play what you want rather than what's curated for you to rent. If the latter is causing you angst then you have an alternative.
 
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SenjutsuSage

Halo TV Series Promoter - Live from: Reach
GTA is the only franchise as big as COD and it's not released every year.

There is something else. Elder Scrolls, Fallout (singleplayer) and Starfield. Bethesda singleplayer RPGs are major events, they also don't release very often. They're huge.

Fallout 4 when it released did Elden Ring numbers a few months in on just day one. The next Elder Scrolls will be huge. Starfield, coming from the Skyrim, Oblivion, Fallout 3 & Fallout 4 studio, is going to be a big deal among Bethesda fans.

For reference Fallout 4 did over 12 million units day one. It doesn't need to do those numbers as part of game pass, but the power of Bethesda RPGs is unquestionable.
 
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Menzies

Member
Happy Big Brother GIF by MOODMAN


No you don't.

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Both available for less than half a year of PC gamepass. If you want to put arbitrary rules around how you spend your money but then want to blame others then that's on you.

You have the option to play what you want rather than what's curated for you to rent. If the latter is causing you angst then you have an alternative.
Microsoft is probably making the same argument as we speak.

It is a bit different for the poster you quoted. He’s coming from a gaming forum knowing full well these titles will eventually land on GamePass as first party games, which stay on the service to rent forever. Whilst he doesn’t have to wait, it would amount to pissing away money.
 
I see the UK sales threads here on Neogaf all the time. Sony is usually on top. But now they want to create an atomosphere that is friendly to a NEW console competitor. Microsoft apparently just can't cut the mustard in UK and they want to see another NEW competitor enter the markets.
UK didn't want to buy anything Google or Apple had to offer. So maybe Valve? What kinds of consoles they got over there that are not just handhelds?
 

GHG

Member
Microsoft is probably making the same argument as we speak.

It is a bit different for the poster you quoted. He’s coming from a gaming forum knowing full well these titles will eventually land on GamePass as first party games, which stay on the service to rent forever. Whilst he doesn’t have to wait, it would amount to pissing away money.

So playing the games you want when you want to play them (in addition to having permanent access to them in your library forever) is pissing away money? God forbid you spend a bit (and it is a bit, one of those games on PC is less than a meal out) for hours of entertainment that you will enjoy.

Where are we again? Is this not an enthusiast gaming forum? Or is this now a gamepass daycare center?
 
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