"With this context, we did not think the merger raised a vertical issue. I am told Call of Duty is a very popular shooter franchise. But we found that Microsoft would probably not shoot itself in the foot by stopping sales of Call of Duty games to the much larger PlayStation player base. Our colleagues at the CMA agreed with us and ultimately reached the same conclusion."
"Where we did have concerns was in cloud gaming - still a nascent market but one we expect to grow, because it offers many advantages for gamers," said Vestager. "For one, it enables gamers to untie games from specific devices - that means more accessibility and lower cost. So cloud gaming deserved an in-depth assessment. This was a common concern because, like us, the CMA focused on this market.
"Where we diverged with the CMA was on remedies. We accepted a 10-year free license to consumers to allow them to stream all Activision games for which they have a license via any cloud service. And why did we do this instead of blocking the merger? Well, to us, this solution fully addressed our concerns. And on top of that, it had significant procompetitive effects.
Vestager concluded, "Our mission is to accompany that transition, one merger at a time. It is to find solutions that keep the game fair for all players, and working closely together with sister agencies as we do so. That is our Call of Duty."
The EC is devoid of logic. Just like the CMA, they recognise the cloud market is going to be significant, and just the like the CMA, both asked for remedies. The EC goes ahead and accept remedies that will only a short specific period of time through which cloud gaming is barely to going to catch on, and when the tide will finally rise, MS will sink all ships but theirs because the remedies offered are not permanent.
Last edited by LurkerJ - on 25 May 2023
In addition, someone is being willingly ignorant when they say "MS is probably not going to shoot themselves in the foot by withholding CoD", what planet do you live on? Big Tech, and MS in particular, are more than willing to dominate markets by eating up losses because they have always valued growth over profits. Just look at Amazon. Other companies have to actually try to make a profit or they will cease to exist. Only companies like MS get to be the McDonald's of tech and fail upwards.
I am fine with EC approving the merger, but their rationale is nonsense.