EU Approves Microsoft’s Acquisition of Activision Blizzard: Some Conditions Apply

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Microsoft Activision Blizzard
EU Green lights the biggest gaming deal in our times (Credit: Otakukart)

Software giant Microsoft reached a significant milestone in its bid to acquire game developer Activision Blizzard after the European Union’s regulatory commission cleared the acquisition, albeit with conditions. This development prompts several questions about the future of both companies and the gaming industry as a whole as the Xbox manufacturer manages to unlock a seemingly-stuck deal in its quest for the supremacy of the gaming segment.  

The $68.7 billion purchase follows weeks of tension after the European regulator agency blocked the transaction. Still, after careful review, it’s the opinion of that governing body that the deal can move on, partly thanks to the commitment that software developer Microsoft put on the table when it comes to cloud gaming governance. The EU considers that Microsoft wouldn’t have any incentives to block the games that Activision made to rival console maker Sony and that if Microsoft withdrew the games, it’d hurt the gaming community.

Will Microsoft Be Able To Buy Activision Blizzard?

Yes, Microsoft will be able to buy software and game developer Activision Blizzard for over $60 billion after the EU green-lit the deal. Still, some conditions apply, as Microsoft must adhere to the governing body’s demands that protect competition with rival platforms and cloud gaming access services. If Microsoft adheres to the conditions, then the Xbox manufacturer is one step closer to finalizing the long-awaited deal. 

Microsoft Activision Blizzard
Activision will be part of Microsoft now (Credit: Activision Blizzard)

Who Needs To Approve The Microsoft Activision Deal?

Besides the European Union, other regulatory bodies and authorities must okay the billion-dollar acquisition, a landmark in gaming history. In the united states, the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice must review the deal, as they are responsible for ensuring that the acquisition is compliant with antitrust laws and doesn’t create unfair competition in the gaming market.

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Moreover, shareholders of Activision and Microsoft must also okay the purchase. Those holding enough stock within Activision to have a say will become crucial in the process as to whether the deal moves on or not, as they stand to gain or lose on that outcome. 

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Why Was The Purchase Of Activision Blizzard By Microsoft Blocked?

The acquisition was initially blocked a few weeks back after the European Union’s regulatory body considered that Microsoft could hinder the rights of gamers and other console makers by restricting or withdrawing the games from Xbox rivals after Microsoft gets hold of the game developer. That would create an unfair environment where Microsoft reserves the right to distribute games in only the platforms they consider. 

Still, today’s EU Regulatory Commission’s decision to clear the acquisition comes with specific requirements that Microsoft must meet to ensure fair competition and protect the gamers and consumers’ interests in order to keep a level playing field in the gaming industry and prevent a single company from having virtual control over the market. 

Microsoft Activision Blizzard
The deal is almost done! (Credit: Microsoft)

What Does Microsoft Buying Activision Mean?

Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard will have several implications for Blizzard and its game franchises, including Warcraft, Diablo, and Overwatch. Here are some potential outcomes of the acquisition:

Increased resources & support

 With Microsoft’s backing wallet, Blizzard could gain access to more resources, expertise, and direct touch with emerging technologies to develop new games and improve existing ones. This increased support might lead to higher-quality games and faster development cycles.

Cross-platform Integration

In recent times, software and console maker Microsoft has been pushing for cross-platform gaming experiences. And this acquisition could drive further integration between Blizzard games and Microsoft platforms like Xbox and Windows. Gamers can expect to see more cross-play opportunities and seamless experiences across different devices.

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Game Pass Inclusion

Microsoft’s popular game subscription service, Xbox Game Pass, will see the addition of Activision Blizzard titles, making them more accessible to gamers at a lower cost, which will increase player engagement and revenue.

Potential Restructuring

As with any significant acquisition, there is a possibility of restructuring within Blizzard as it becomes part of the larger Microsoft organization. As such, this change could lead to new leadership and direction for the company, which may affect its future projects and game development. Some games in development might get the axe, and others will improve, and their rollout will become more expedited.

Commitment To Fair Competition

As mentioned earlier, the EU’s conditions require Microsoft to maintain fair competition and not restrict access to Activision Blizzard games on competing platforms. So, gamers can keep their cool, as the big, bad Microsoft won’t snatch their Activision titles from their PlayStation consoles. This is a fundamental requirement on the EU’s part, and it means that gamers should continue to enjoy their games on various platforms without any major changes to pricing or availability.

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By Alberto Zambrano

I'm Alberto Zambrano, and I'm a Venezuelan writer who specializes in writing gossip and entertainment from streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+. You can reach out to me via

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