Microsoft gives Ubisoft streaming rights control for Activision Blizzard games

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Microsoft and Ubisoft have agreed a 15 year deal that gives Ubisoft the right to stream Activision Blizzard games. This will come into effect once the Microsoft acquisition of Activision Blizzard has been formally confirmed. This will mean services like Ubisoft+ will having streaming rights to the Call of Duty, as well as other Activision Blizzard games that will come in the future.

“We’re dedicated to delivering amazing experiences to our players wherever they choose to play,” said Chris Early Senior Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and Business Development, Ubisoft. “Over the past 15 years we’ve built and honed our online services and distribution ecosystem into one of the most complete in the industry. Today’s deal will give players even more opportunities to access and enjoy some of the biggest brands in gaming.”

The deal between Microsoft and Ubisoft has been structured so it does not fall foul of the UK’s regulatory body in particular. Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision has hit stumbling blocks with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the US and the Competition and Markets Authority in the UK having concerns, including Microsoft gaining a monopoly over the game streaming market. The FTC lost its appeal to halt the acquisition last month, but the CMA had already blocked it with Microsoft appealing. With the FTC’s flop in court, Microsoft and the CMA agreed to go back to the negotiating table.

This deal with Ubisoft should be a major mitigation, effectively removing Microsoft from the picture when it comes to determining who can bring Activision Blizzard games to their streaming platforms. Ubisoft will pay Microsoft for these rights, and then if Microsoft wants to stream COD through Game Pass, they’ll have to pay Ubisoft back in return, but most importantly, they won’t be able to dictate terms or fees that are applied to Xbox Cloud Gaming competitors.

The new deal itself gives Ubisoft exclusive rights to stream Activision Blizzard games in most of the world. However, in the European Economic Area these rights are non exclusive, meaning other companies can have their own deals for streaming rights. This deal includes all current Activision Blizzard games and all future games for the next 15 years. This morning, the BBC has reported that Microsoft has submitted a new deal for Activision Blizzard, following the CMA’s rejection of the original deal that was valued at $69 billion.

Source: Press Release/BBC

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From the heady days of the Mega Drive up until the modern day gaming has been my main hobby. I'll give almost any game a go.