Earlier this month Microsoft went on a promise spree with NVIDIA and Nintendo and agreed on new 10-year deals to release Call of Duty on perspective platforms. The company launched quite a large-scale marketing campaign alongside the promises with the tagline of “more games, on more platforms, for more gamers”. However, the FTC doesn’t seem convinced by this recent journey and has now demanded Microsoft share exact details on these promises amid the ongoing Activision Blizzard acquisition.
By the look of things, Microsoft’s “deals” with Nintendo and NVIDIA didn’t actually have any sort of legally binding process involved when the company made them. So much so that the FTC has now requested the exact contracts which Microsoft made as part of this agreement.
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The FTC states that Microsoft cannot rely on these agreements with NVIDIA and Nintendo without producing actual details regarding what these promises are. The FTC says that the company clearly intends to use these agreements in its defence in the Activision case but without information, these agreements mean nothing.
“Despite clearly intending to use these agreements in its defense, Microsoft has refused to produce underlying internal documents related to these agreements, or communications with third parties other than Nvidia, Nintendo and Sony. Microsoft should be not permitted to introduce or rely on these agreements without producing the requested underlying discovery.”
Apart from the current NVIDIA and Nintendo promises, Microsoft has also agreed to a so-called “10-year legal agreement” to bring Call of Duty to PlayStation and Japanese cloud gaming company Ubitus. In addition, Microsoft also brought Boosterdoid on board with the same deal. However, all of these legal promises lack contractual agreements which the FTC now wants to see.
The FTC has also requested that Microsoft share its exclusivity plans for content related to both Zenimax and Activision Blizzard. This would mean detailing what future projects Microsoft is working on at Zenimax as well as its intentions behind exclusive content at Activision Blizzard.
Lastly, the FTC has requested documents from Microsoft related to its next-generation gaming ecosystem which is under a codename redacted from the report. This would mean the company would have to share its plans for future hardware including consoles and tech.