Microsoft is getting absolutely clowned on over its wave of Call of Duty deals
Microsoft is signing partnerships with just about anyone who'll take them in its attempt to push the Xbox Activision deal over the line, and people are starting to take note.
Yesterday, Xbox boss Phil Spencer announced Xbox's fourth 10-year deal in as many weeks. This time it was Ubitus, a company best known for its work on the Nintendo Switch's cloud-based ports, that got 10 years of access to "Xbox PC games as well as Activision Blizzard titles after the acquisition closes." That news came just a day after a very similar deal with Ukrainian cloud service Boosteroid, and only weeks after partnerships with Nintendo and Nvidia.
Some of those names are significantly bigger than others, and Microsoft is now getting clowned on as social media users invent all manner of fake partnerships with obscure and outdated tech. A couple of posts (one boasting Spencer's seal of approval) describe a deal with Texas Instruments, promising to "bring Call of Duty to a calculator near you."
Microsoft has signed a 10 year deal with Texas Instruments to bring Call of Duty to a calculator near you. https://t.co/LblRp9bZDo pic.twitter.com/o114foAzBVMarch 15, 2023
One post confirms a deal with Tamagotchi, while others are bringing Call of Duty to the infamous chicken-warming KFC console and SouljaBoy's bizarre consoles.
👀 XBOX and Phill Spencer have announced that all Xbox games and activision titles(after being acquired) will appear on the Tamagotchi in a landmark 10 year deal. pic.twitter.com/EhoW2t5VfhMarch 15, 2023
BREAKING NEWS: Microsoft has announced yet another 10 year deal with KFC to bring Call of Duty to their KFC Console. Also if you buy an 8 piece family meal you get a free weapon skin. pic.twitter.com/4l68Eg94A2March 15, 2023
Microsoft's next 10 year Call of Duty deal 👇🏿 pic.twitter.com/iewIUh2YTeMarch 15, 2023
Others are taking an even more mocking stance, coming up with partnerships for fledgling platforms that don't really exist, but are simultaneously "definitely real and used by actual people."
Phil Spencer be like We are proud to announce a 10-year partnership with @FlibbingoDingo (10 follower account that last tweeted in 2019) to bring Call of Duty to their cloud streaming service that is definitely real and used by actual peopleMarch 15, 2023
While Microsoft's taking a bit of a beating, this is unlikely to be the last we hear of its 10-year deals. A core aspect of its negotiations with Sony is using increased access to Call of Duty for players around the world as a counter to complaints that it'll keep the franchise away from PlayStation users as soon as it gets the chance, or that the acquisition would otherwise give it an unfair advantage, especially in cloud gaming.
While Microsoft's scattershot tactic is making it the butt of a few jokes, I think it's better than Sony's recent approach of accusations of potential sabotage, reportedly as part of a strategy to block the merger at any cost.
Ever-opposed to Microsoft's Activision acquisition, Sony claims Starfield's exclusivity shows why Microsoft can't be trusted with Call of Duty.