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UK CMA blocks the Microsoft takeover of Activision

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Here's some industry news for you: the UK's Competition and Markets Authority has announced today they've blocked Microsoft's takeover of Activision.

Interestingly, the main concern of the UK CMA here seems to be around Cloud Gaming specifically. As they said in their statement "Microsoft has a strong position in cloud gaming services and the evidence available to the CMA showed that Microsoft would find it commercially beneficial to make Activision’s games exclusive to its own cloud gaming service." and that "The deal would reinforce Microsoft’s advantage in the market by giving it control over important gaming content such as Call of Duty, Overwatch, and World of Warcraft. The evidence available to the CMA indicates that, absent the merger, Activision would start providing games via cloud platforms in the foreseeable future.".

Quite a big blow to the $68.7 billion deal!

We saw Microsoft attempt to get around these concerns, with various Cloud Gaming deals being announced over the last year but it seems that just hasn't been enough. An interesting part of the CMA announcement was on a proposal submitted by Microsoft, to address some of their concerns, this proposal was to set out "requirements governing what games must be offered by Microsoft to what platforms and on what conditions over a ten-year period" but one of the shortcomings noted was "It was not sufficiently open to providers who might wish to offer versions of games on PC operating systems other than Windows.". Nice to see.

The UK certainly isn't the only country to be concerned by the power this deal would hand to Microsoft with the US FTC also trying to block it and according to Reuters earlier this year there were no substantive settlement talks on it. So now with the UK blocking it, that will likely boost the FTC's argument to block it too. On top of that, there's also the EU regulators decision coming up next month.

Microsoft, naturally, will be attempting to appeal the decision.

What are your thoughts?

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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Raaben Apr 26, 2023
Good. Microsoft or not, I am sick of the giant megacorps buying up everything in sight and I hope these types of deals stay closely watched.

Esp with Microsoft, I think it's apparent they're in the Good Guy state right now for positive press and getting gamers to side with them, until they have enough big name game studios to pull everything back into their walled garden Windows store/cloud services and lock out other systems.
rea987 Apr 26, 2023
IDK, there are so many abandonware titles related with Activision due to licensing issues, I would prefer Activision to be absorbed by Microsoft which might lessen the issue a bit.
Termy Apr 26, 2023
Good thing!
If we don't need one thing, then it is a gaming-monoply in microsoft hands...even more so than it wouldn't be a good thing wiht any other comapny to have such an influence.

Quoting: RaabenEsp with Microsoft, I think it's apparent they're in the Good Guy state right now for positive press and getting gamers to side with them,

And i'm shocked how many people fall for that and praise MS and the game pass...i hate the term 'sheeple', but it rarely fits better...


Last edited by Termy on 26 April 2023 at 11:43 am UTC
massatt212 Apr 26, 2023
wasn't surprise this would happen, Sony corruption is too big, Sony even bought another studio last week and complaining how microsoft will take COD there money Goose lol.
Raaben Apr 26, 2023
Quoting: TermyAnd i'm shocked how many people fall for that and praise MS and the game pass...i hate the term 'sheeple', but it rarely fits better...

Just going through comments esp on Reddit, it's amazing how many people are completely convinced that if the deal goes through, Acti would be cleaned out, all the favorite old IPs revived and all games given top love and attention, and totally have WoW and Diablo on gamepass/Steam.

Basically, so many people seem to have this weird dreaming mindset of, Acti sucks, so if they get bought out, the megacorp will magically do everything I'd like and nothing bad!. Not that I like Acti or its current state, but I've never seen people fight so hard for consolidation as this.
massatt212 Apr 26, 2023
Quoting: Raaben
Quoting: TermyAnd i'm shocked how many people fall for that and praise MS and the game pass...i hate the term 'sheeple', but it rarely fits better...

Just going through comments esp on Reddit, it's amazing how many people are completely convinced that if the deal goes through, Acti would be cleaned out, all the favorite old IPs revived and all games given top love and attention, and totally have WoW and Diablo on gamepass/Steam.

Basically, so many people seem to have this weird dreaming mindset of, Acti sucks, so if they get bought out, the megacorp will magically do everything I'd like and nothing bad!. Not that I like Acti or its current state, but I've never seen people fight so hard for consolidation as this.

i dont think microsoft cant be worst that Activision, at least there would be hope on games like World of Warcraft, that Activision keeps destroying, i wanted to some Hope for Blizzard Games.
damarrin Apr 26, 2023
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Oh thank god.
ssj17vegeta Apr 26, 2023
Very good news indeed. Big corpos and their increased centralization are a plague cast upon gamers, no matter what AAA-loving people will tell you.

A shame Reagan damaged antitrust laws so much in the 80s.
Pengling Apr 26, 2023
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I always felt miffed that they allowed GAME to buy out Gamestation (their only real competitor - I seem to recall that their reasoning for allowing this was that you could buy shovelware in supermarkets, so that constituted choice in the marketplace), but I'll give them credit for getting it right here - it looks like lessons were learned.
StalePopcorn Apr 26, 2023
THANK GOD! MICROSOFT WOULD'VE STEAMROLLED THE US GOVERNMENT!
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