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Microsoft has acquired Activision Blizzard. Woah. .


MidWalian
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I seem to recall Microsoft getting timed exclusives/content/DLC in the 360/PS3 era, no? I also seem to recall a lot of "Sony has no games lol!1!" then as well.

 

Funny how people forget.

 

 

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1 hour ago, El Spatula said:

It's all just dickheadery. Championing the creator of your fave toy like you're twelve and in a playground. 

Did you read the piece? As there is not a lot of corporate cheerleading going on. I think the point they are making about the reason we are now at a point where obscene amounts of money are being thrown about to buy up assets certainly has merit and those who are now suddenly 'fearful' of what the future holds when until this point nobody seemed to care is a bit too on the nose for some to be comfortable with.

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I'm not necessarily talking about the article. Just the gloating and general "my toy is better than yours" of this topic is painful. 

 

Buying exclusivity isn't new. Both MS and Sony have done it a lot. 

 

It's playground level bullshit. 

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In terms of gaming, Microsoft have been under the cosh for some time, so when they finally come out swinging with their biggest advantage (limitless bags of money) it's always going to get the shitposting going. I mean here it has been relatively restrained compared to the rest of the web and at least kept to this ant the other 'warz' containment thread.

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I don't think it's necessarily a gimme that the pot of money is limitless, even if it effectively is. They could have limitlessed their way into mobile.

 

Sounds like they were close to calling it quits on Xbox. $8bn was like an affirmation they're hanging around, but equally could still bail Nokia style. $68bn is all in.

 

Phil has clearly been showing good PowerPoints to someone.

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54 minutes ago, Sarlaccfood said:

It’s funny bringing up the 360 era actually. Imagine being a pissed-off Sony fan right now when we’re potentially looking at the return of a company that, last time it was on the back-foot, gave us a refreshed cheaper PS3, generous PS+ games every month, loads of investment and spotlighting of the indie scene and super consumer-friendly stuff like seamless crossplay with the Vita. All alongside the no-expense-spared exclusives they’re still doing nowadays. 
 

And all you have to do is give up fucking COD. 
 

I mean shit even if nothing like the above happens again, this buyout has already sliced a tenner a month off whatever gamepass rival they had planned at the very least. 

 

This is what I'm hoping for. A response from a Sony that realises it can't sit on it's bum and shit out another console the size of my house and be applauded for it.

Hopefully a smaller, less ugly console, more first party games being given away on their subscription service and some poor fucker taking the time to make sure their save syncing is as seamless as Microsofts.   That for me is a personal wish list.   I'm sure others have other things they'd love to see from Sony as a bit of a response.

 

 

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14 hours ago, layten said:

This is an interesting take for those who are happy to handwave away Sony buying up exclusivity (timed or not).

FJpeJAKagAIWsGg.thumb.jpg.ce381785ee08f9b2caee1d97a615d082.jpg

 

Was that from Neogaf or Reset? Just curious to read how the discussion went after that, if you have the URL to hand, that would be super handy, cheers. :)

 

I think people sometimes forget, that Nintendo used to threaten to cut entire publishers off from their platform if they dared publish their games on Sega consoles. All this stuff is the nature of the ravenous, capitalist beast we live under. Ultimately what you want is broadly what we have now, three strong competitors keeping each other in check.

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It will be interesting to see if the maligned predatory business practices of activision were actually any better for business results. For example will a less than yearly release of cod actually end up hurting its revenue and cultural relevance. It would be counter intuitive from a business perspective applying the halo development cycle project management style to the much more commercially successful cod. 

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On 21/01/2022 at 09:38, rgraves said:

Honestly, I think MS looked at Activision and had a choice to make - they either said they could no longer work with them and cut them loose (handing the content to Sony basically), or they came up with a response/plan to fix the culture there so that it didn't become an issue for them (when they are clearly trying to build good will this gen). They chose the later - and they felt like the best way to really fix the culture and control that process to their satisfaction was to own them.

 

When Spencer talked about having to change the way they worked with Activision, I really do believe they were at a point where it was either all-in, or all-out. And while $70b is a lot, if they'd instead announced it was going the other way (and CoD would only be on Playstation from now on pretty much by default for at least a good few years until somebody else found a way to kick Kotick out and fix the rotten mess) I suspect the impact on their business would have been significantly more profound.


The deal is far more about high levels of global inflation pushing big companies with lots of cash towards investing that cash in assets, and King-owners Activision-Blizzard’s share price having recently tanked, making them an ideal target. 
 

It has nothing to do with kindly Uncle Phil wanting to clean up the games industry, as nice an idea as that is. 

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1 hour ago, Oz said:

It will be interesting to see if the maligned predatory business practices of activision were actually any better for business results. For example will a less than yearly release of cod actually end up hurting its revenue and cultural relevance. It would be counter intuitive from a business perspective applying the halo development cycle project management style to the much more commercially successful cod. 

I wonder how much Microsoft's goal of driving GamePass subscriptions affects how they define success compared to the traditional release model. 

 

Do you need to release a CoD every year in order to keep that section of the market or would they be satisfied with a new game every two years if the games received updates for two years instead of one? 

 

I've seen a few people float the idea of changing CoD from an annual release schedule with a three year development cycle to a biannual release with a four year development cycle. In theory you'd get better games and it'd free up a studio to go work on new ideas. If that did happen under Microsoft you could end up with something like.

-Year One: Halo

-Year Two: Infinity Ward CoD

-Year Three: Gears? Overwatch?

-Year Four: Treyarch CoD

 

Sledgehammer could go do their own thing and Microsoft would still have a big shooter franchise each year in November. You would run the risk of opening the market up for EA to make a major push for Battlefield in one of the CoD free years though. 

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Just now, bear said:

Sledgehammer could go do their own thing and Microsoft would still have a big shooter franchise each year in November. You would run the risk of opening the market up for EA to make a major push for Battlefield in one of the CoD free years though. 

 

Which you could counter by releasing new maps every year as part of the sub.

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6 minutes ago, mikeyl said:


With Sony it is a fair competition and sustainable in the market it was in, they built up that position though brand cachet and eventually, games. Did they piss up all their Walkman profits propping up SCIE? If anything it’s the opposite. The market is distorted with Microsoft, they are subsidised by their dominance elsewhere and the numbers being spent is not supported within its own industry. Enjoy it whilst it lasts (and I will, this months GP absolutely bangs) but £70 billion plus the rest is a lot to make up.

For a company valued in the trillions it’s small change. 

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2 minutes ago, Stanley said:

This is true, and came in handy for playing the Gary Barlow CD I got my partner for Christmas. Don’t judge us. 

 

Suddenly the PS5 not being able to read audio cd's is a plus again.

 

(I kid, I kid.)

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2 minutes ago, Unofficial Who said:

 

Suddenly the PS5 not being able to read audio cd's is a plus again.

 

(I kid, I kid.)

😬:lol:
 

I couldn’t find it on vinyl, which is what I normally buy :blush:

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8 minutes ago, mikeyl said:


With Sony it is a fair competition and sustainable in the market it was in, they built up that position though brand cachet and eventually, games. Did they piss up all their Walkman profits propping up SCIE? 

 

Well if you look at the Minidisc failure.. yes? They have tried so many times over the years to force different non gaming hardware and formats out that have failed even going back to the Betamax days.

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1 minute ago, Stanley said:

For a company valued in the trillions it’s small change. 


You don’t become trillionaires by wiping out £70 billion purchases. How will they make all their money back? “More subscribers” seems the go to, but that’s an awful lot of subscribers they will need at the current pricing and loopholes. Maybe they can sell all that data they’ve been gathering about our cake preferences from the Microsoft Rewards daily quizzes.

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2 minutes ago, Lorfarius said:

 

Well if you look at the Minidisc failure.. yes? They have tried so many times over the years to force different non gaming hardware and formats out that have failed even going back to the Betamax days.


Saw a thing about how Minidisc actually did all right in Japan. Loved my little massive Denon import that I couldn’t charge up due to lack of Japanese charger. But still cooler than a Zune.

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44 minutes ago, Lorfarius said:

 

Well if you look at the Minidisc failure.. yes? They have tried so many times over the years to force different non gaming hardware and formats out that have failed even going back to the Betamax days.


They fucked up spectacularly when it came to the transition of music to MP3. Steve Jobs was frightened that Sony would just utterly destroy the fledgling iPod, then watched in delight as they managed to make the absolute worst possible decision at pretty much every juncture.

 

LG and Samsung have completely eaten their lunch in the TV market as well.

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14 minutes ago, mikeyl said:


You don’t become trillionaires by wiping out £70 billion purchases. How will they make all their money back? “More subscribers” seems the go to, but that’s an awful lot of subscribers they will need at the current pricing and loopholes. Maybe they can sell all that data they’ve been gathering about our cake preferences from the Microsoft Rewards daily quizzes.

 

This is why MS is aggressively pursuing mobile and PC in addition to consoles. GP ultimately works best at scale - while a price rise eventually is likely, I'm not certain that we'll be talking about huge price hikes, because it's not the cost of the sub that should be bringing in the money, it's the scale of the service.

 

The gaming audience is thought to be around 3billion people, with the majority of the money made being in the mobile and PC spaces. Through their growing mobile business, and dedication to traditional "premium" games being playable on PC and mobile via the cloud, MS is hoping to expand GP way beyond the console market. That's why it's slightly amusing when people laugh at MS because you "don't need to buy an Xbox to play their games" - the console market is just a piece of the pie that MS actually want to be eating.

 

Activision is already well established in these areas and on that level, the purchase makes a lot of sense even if you ignore the "exclusive console games" angle. It's a broad strategy that, so far at least, appears to be working well for them. At 25million subs, GP will already be bringing in billions a year - if they get to 50? 100? 200 million? You're talking ridiculous sums of money even without fee increases. You're potentially talking about more money than PlayStation currently makes in its entirety from one service. It's all to play for and MS are playing hard.

On the topic of MS eventually turning evil, it's almost a guaranteed thing. Even if you trust Spencer, he'll eventually move on or retire and things will change, but this is true for all of the big three and we've seen it from them all time and time again. My advice is to just enjoy things while things are good.

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