Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard

A lot of posts here and sorry if I skipped over any relevant ones, but I’m confused by articles talking about Microsoft banking on owning a bigger piece of the Metaverse. Ambiguous as the term is, a lot of them refer to VR and AR, which are related at least to Facebook’s angle, but as far as I can tell Microsoft (along with Nintendo) seem less interested in gaming for any kind of VR content than the other major players (Steam/Valve and PS), and the devs acquired don’t really seem inclined in that direction. Am I missing things here, or are journalists just throwing words around?

It’s a buzzword. They are talking ‘Wall Street’-speak.

Even Satya can’t break the “ever other windows release is a flop” rule.

Microsoft understand that wall street think there must be something in the metaverse because facebook are going on about it. So in press releases they attach the metaverse word to anything with even a tangential relationship to AR/VR/multi-user entertainment. That is the extent of it.

The amazing thing is Phil himself said last year that MS walking away after the Xbox One debacle was an actual possibility. Satya had just gotten the CEO job, didn’t have any background in games, and it would have been so easy for him to just look at the RROD costs and then the Xbox One getting boat raced and saying “We’re out.”

And here we are $90 billion in gaming acquisitions later.

Another article. It seems Kotick wanted to buy gaming media to (assumedly) force it to print positive stuff about him.

The funny thing about the console market is it only really exists in the developed world.

The developed world has all the money, so that isn’t a super important distinction.

Couldn’t you say the same about Pokemon Cards, or Table Top Miniatures or basically any hobby in the world that requires more resources than sense?

MS is an easytarget :-) lets not forget Sony has been doing this for … well decades. Just read up on Sony and Music Publishing since the 80s… they are no angels, its business as usual. I would have rather wanted MS to buy WB or Take Two… but i guess they tried, and Activision was left. Oh well… ACTI needs a lot of house cleaning, and Blizzard could use a wakeup call to go back to creating original IP like it used to pre activison merge.

Don’t fret.

Definitely nothing to due with Icewind Dale not being an RTS…

No, it has to do with having money.
Personally, I haven’t owned a Console since the PS2. Everything after that has just been downhill.

Does antitrust legislation apply to products like these? Seems weird the government should care about share of the FPS market.

Haha. Bobby calling out all the games-to-toys competitors.

I had a really cool vision for what the next Guitar Hero would be, and realized we don’t have the resources to do that. And Skylanders too. One of the great disappointments of my career is that other people came in and they came out with crappy alternatives. And they dumped all of these crappy alternatives in the market, and basically destroyed the market for what was a really cool future opportunity.

There is basically zero chance the relevant market for antitrust purposes would be defined that narrowly. By way of comparison, the court found in the Epic/Apple lawsuit that the relevant market was “digital mobile gaming transactions". I’d be surprised if the relevant market here was defined any narrower than console gaming, and probably not even that.

Apparently after Microsoft made the offer, Kotick then tried to shop the company to Facebook, which passed. Bookmark this for all the “Why Facebook failed at the metaverse” postmortems we’ll see in a decade or so. (A company that’s trying to build a metaverse should probably be at least a little interested in a bunch of widely known gaming IPs being offered at a comparative discount.)

Antitrust legislation definitely can be applied. It’s been used in the movie industry in the past, and what is the gaming but the modern day’s movie business?

Activision Blizzard is far more than COD. One thing Microsoft got in the deal was Candy Crush, which generated $1.9 billion in revenue worldwide in 2020. WOW generated $1.1 billion, etc.

It can. It won’t though.

If the consumer feels deprived of essential COD and Candy, it’s not like there will be no Sony/Steam alternatives. Do the specific brands carry weight, on the basis of being so profitable thus far? Seems like a victory for marketing rather than the consumer.

We must be free to experience stale retreads of giant franchises!

To extend the analogy, though, I’m pretty sure no movie industry antitrust jurisprudence covered a specific genre. Also, it may be relevant that the main movie industry antitrust enforcement action, the Paramount decrees, were recently lifted

Too stupid / didn’t read.