Microsoft has reached a deal to purchase Activision Blizzard for a staggering $67.8 billion. With that, the company has announced that games from the giant software developer would make their way to Game Pass for Xbox and PC, offering subscribers tons of new stuff to play.
Buying a company as massive as Activision Blizzard is giant on its own—now, the company’s enormous library of games like Call of Duty, Diablo, World of Warcraft, and all the others are first-party Microsoft games. When you consider Game Pass, which offers Microsoft’s first-party games on release day for a monthly fee, this could be a true game-changer for the industry. Instead of paying $60 for the Call of Duty, it could be included in your $15 per month subscription.
Microsoft spoke about the acquisition and how it relates to Game Pass. “The acquisition also bolsters Microsoft’s Game Pass portfolio with plans to launch Activision Blizzard games into Game Pass, which has reached a new milestone of over 25 million subscribers. With Activision Blizzard’s nearly 400 million monthly active players in 190 countries and three billion-dollar franchises, this acquisition will make Game Pass one of the most compelling and diverse lineups of gaming content in the industry,” said the company in a release.
Before we get too excited, Microsoft did clarify that not all Activision games would make their way to Game Pass. “Upon close, we will offer as many Activision Blizzard games as we can within Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass, both new titles and games from Activision Blizzard’s incredible catalog,” said Phil Spencer, CEO, Microsoft Gaming, in a blog post. “As many Activision Blizzard games as we can” is the operative phrase in that statement.
Which games will be included remains to be seen. We’d suspect that Microsoft isn’t suddenly going to make World of Warcraft free as part of Game Pass. But will the company make the latest Call of Duty or Diablo game free on day one with a subscription? We’ll have to wait and see.
Of course, the sale has to go through the standard closing conditions and completion of regulatory review and Activision Blizzard’s shareholder approval before it’s finalized. Assuming that all goes well, the deal is slated to be completed during the fiscal year 2023, which is July 1, 2022, through June 30, 2023.
This could go down as one of the most significant sales in the history of video games and one of the best deals for Game Pass subscribers on both Xbox and PC.
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