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A new report from Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier claims that the new mainline Call of Duty games for 2022 and 2023, as well as a sequel to Call of Duty: Warzone, will still be released on PlayStation consoles.
This report comes just over a week after Microsoft announced it acquired Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion, with the deal expected to close by June 2023. Ever since the controversial acquisition was announced last week, we’ve speculated what this meant for the exclusivity of Call of Duty, one of the biggest franchises in gaming. The status of Call of Duty got even hazier when Microsoft’s Phil Spencer tweeted his “desire to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation.”
Had good calls this week with leaders at Sony. I confirmed our intent to honor all existing agreements upon acquisition of Activision Blizzard and our desire to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation. Sony is an important part of our industry, and we value our relationship.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) January 20, 2022
This report clarifies what exactly the tweet means. According to four of Bloomberg’s sources, Activision Blizzard had already committed to releasing 2022’s Call of Duty game from Infinity Ward, 2023’s mainline Call of Duty game from Treyarch, and a new version of the free-to-play battle royale Call of Duty: Warzone on PlayStation platforms.
In the past, Microsoft has honored any preexisting console platform agreements, even after their acquisitions are complete, so it’s not very surprising that some Call of Duty games will end up on PlayStation for the next couple of years.
At the earliest, it seems like 2024 could be the first year where we see an Xbox-exclusive Call of Duty game. Bloomberg’s sources did say that Microsoft and Activision Blizzard aren’t completely ruling out releasing Call of Duty games on PlayStation after 2023 just yet. Bloomberg also previously reported that Activision Blizzard may consider not releasing Call of Duty games annually. Microsoft, Activision Blizzard, and Sony have not commented on these reports.
Final decisions on these significant questions are expected to happen once the acquisition is complete. In the meantime, don’t expect any major shift in regard to Call of Duty’s platforms or release schedule for the next two years.