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Wall Street was Betting That Microsoft-Activision Deal Will Fail

Topher

Gold Member
When Sega released the Genesis in 1989, Nintendo controlled 95% of the video game industry. These people will claim that wasn’t a monopoly, but MS growing to 12% would be a monopoly.

Are people actually saying this is going to result in a monopoly for MS?
 

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
Rumors...oh yeah, solid evidence. There were rumors about Apple eyeing Sony, about Sony coveting multiple entities...Rumors...

Yes, well, since Sony didn't end up buying Zenimax, rumors are all we have to go on.

Sony/Zenimax/MS are not going to come out and talk about failed bids or negotiations. So anything we know comes from the quote unquote insiders.
 

Ozriel

Member
I don't think so. Japanese companies are rarely, rarely bullish when it comes to "massive" buyouts, unlike american ones. I do not believe for a moment that Sony or Nintendo would have considered acquiring a publisher, even a medium sized one before MS went for Zenimax...

The same Sony that was in the running to buy Leyou - a publisher - months before MS bought Zenimax?

I guess Sony became a German company when they bought Crunchyroll to set up absolute dominance in the anime streaming business, eh?

Publishers like Zenimax are simply a collective of studios, so there's no real difference between MS purchasing them and Sony's studio acquisition spree... Except in the scope.

You really have no business investing in just one ecosystem as a consumer, if this matters this much to you
 
When Sega released the Genesis in 1989, Nintendo controlled 95% of the video game industry. These people will claim that wasn’t a monopoly, but MS growing to 12% would be a monopoly.

If the landscape morphs to push towards streaming services instead of the traditional model, your assumptions will weigh no more than a few peanuts, I'm afraid. Which is exactly what MS is geared to do. Keep bleeding money left and right, sustain the service, absorb the losses, acquire more players...until it hits a critical mass, which will weaken the remainder of the publishers' negotiating power, making it almost impossible for a serious competitor to gamepass to emerge...Sony can not operate at this level, and neither can Nintendo; Apple does not care that much, and google will find a small niche, if at all. Which major rival is going to enter the scene at that point? This is where we are headed, and yet people seem to be ecstatic about the perspective.
 
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drganon

Member
I think people were saying that if they went unchecked and were allowed to buy all the remaining top publishers (Activision, UbiSoft, EA, SEGA, etc).

And I don't know a single person who didn't think Nintendo had a monopoly in the NES days with their draconian licensing policies.
Didn't Nintendo eventually get sued for those tactics? Either way, there's a reason why people are concerned when a company has Microsoft's history of anti competitive tactics.
 

JackMcGunns

Member
Come on now. None of the kids these days understand what a monopoly is, as evidenced by the backlash to this acquisition. Why would they begin to understand the Monopoly board game's terminology?




Did I age myself correclty? :messenger_tears_of_joy:

Hey I just played Monopoly with my boy the other day, I have the Super Mario Bros. set :messenger_beaming:


 
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  • Strength
Reactions: TLZ
The same Sony that was in the running to buy Leyou - a publisher - months before MS bought Zenimax?

I guess Sony became a German company when they bought Crunchyroll to set up absolute dominance in the anime streaming business, eh?

Publishers like Zenimax are simply a collective of studios, so there's no real difference between MS purchasing them and Sony's studio acquisition spree... Except in the scope.

You really have no business investing in just one ecosystem as a consumer, if this matters this much to you

It would be one thing if the...
You know what, you win! I admit defeat...
It's like Groundhog day when it comes to this theme. You will not change my mind, and I obviously will not change yours...
I just wonder where you draw the limit. If MS were to close the deal and gun for another publisher or two, I would expect you to pop up and praise the vertues of..."competition"...
😀
 
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I think people were saying that if they went unchecked and were allowed to buy all the remaining top publishers (Activision, UbiSoft, EA, SEGA, etc).

And I don't know a single person who didn't think Nintendo had a monopoly in the NES days with their draconian licensing policies.

Thank you, and some of us are old enough to remember how MS established Windows in the nineties. Nobody in their right mind wants MS to bow out...They are as legitimate as either Sony or Nintendo. What gamers should be worried about is MS forcing their way into the very top by re-enacting their "seek and destroy" philosophy, which they seem to have embraced again. They have no counter-weight, so if they go unchecked, they can force Sony out by outspending them six, seven, ten times until they cut them off...
And I do not like the perspective of a MS reigning unchallenged. Past events prove it...
 
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If the landscape morphs to push towards streaming services instead of the traditional model, your assumptions will weigh no more than a few peanuts, I'm afraid. Which is exactly what MS is geared to do. Keep bleeding money left and right, sustain the service, absorb the losses, acquire more players...until it hits a critical mass, which will weaken the remainder of the publishers' negotiating power, making it almost impossible for a serious competitor to gamepass to emerge...Sony can not operate at this level, and neither can Nintendo; Apple does not care that much, and google will find a small niche, if at all. Which major rival is going to enter the scene at that point? This is where we are headed, and yet people seem to be ecstatic about the perspective.

Or Sony could just put Day 1 first party games on their service now so they don't lose mindshare in the future. Sony makes billions in profits each year. Sure playstation division may operate at a loss for a few years but Sony overall would still be profitable. And even if they aren't profitable they should still be going all in. Netflix, and Amazon didn't make profit for years, Disney Plus isn't expected to be profitable until like 2024 or 2025. Its called investing.

If this scenario comes to fruition then Sony will have nobody to blame but themselves. Each time they release a big first party game and its not on PS Plus its a missed opportunity to grow the service.
 
Are people actually saying this is going to result in a monopoly for MS?

"Microsoft insinuates the growth of Xbox Game Pass has been “hampered by Sony’s desire to inhibit such growth” and Sony is using a variety of exclusivity deals to achieve this. Sony makes no secret of the fact they enter into agreements with third-party publishers to secure PS5 and/or PS4 exclusivity for new games or DLC, but there is a different kind of exclusivity deal we haven’t heard about before. Apparently, “Sony pays for “blocking rights” to prevent developers from adding content to Game Pass and other competing subscription services.” The exclusivity deals could explain why some games are added to PS Plus but never appear on Xbox Game Pass, or don’t appear on Game Pass until months or even years later.

On the other hand, Sony is apparently concerned that Microsoft potentially playing the same game with the Call of Duty franchise would mean that “Microsoft would gain an unattainable lead in subscription services.” This is despite Microsoft’s insistence that they have no intention of making Call of Duty an Xbox-exclusive franchise as it “would simply not be profitable.” This ongoing argument is just part of the debate ongoing over Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard, the outcome of which is likely to be heard next year. Until then, we may even hear more secrets from behind the scenes at Sony and Microsoft."

Source: https://www.playstationlifestyle.net/2022/08/10/sony-blocks-games-from-xbox-game-pass/

We all know Sony doesn't actually believe their own claim, but that's their basis for formally objecting to the acquisition. I think most here recognize the acquisition will make Microsoft more competitive with Sony compared to last generation, but has no chance whatsoever of putting them anywhere even remotely close to monopoly territory.
 
Or Sony could just put Day 1 first party games on their service now so they don't lose mindshare in the future. Sony makes billions in profits each year. Sure playstation division may operate at a loss for a few years but Sony overall would still be profitable. And even if they aren't profitable they should still be going all in. Netflix, and Amazon didn't make profit for years, Disney Plus isn't expected to be profitable until like 2024 or 2025. Its called investing.

If this scenario comes to fruition then Sony will have nobody to blame but themselves. Each time they release a big first party game and its not on PS Plus its a missed opportunity to grow the service.

Not only will they be absorbing huge losses year after year, but they have neither the technological infrastructure, nor the money to combat MS on this field. Sony CFO, lawyers, Jim Ryan...they all made the same comments ad nauseam...They can not transition right now, because it would significantly affect their budgets for their in-house teams, modifying their output...which would negatively impact their customers. How much has MS invested in GP between 2017 and now? Close to $80 billions in acquisitions alone? Not counting the third party deals, the 1$ subscription offers...among other things. Sony would be ecstatic to pour a fraction of that...which represents MS recent annual income, give or take. Sony would need eight years worth of benefits, plus a relatively similar could infrastructure to be able to dream about treading blows...
Pivoting right now would be financially suicidal...and waiting until the generation is over will grant GP a massive lead. MS changed the rules like only a handful companies on earth could, at any point. Business wise, kudos to them...but people insisting that it would be easy for Sony to shift gears and start flexing are delusional: The current 50 million PS Plus users are not enough...In fact, for the whole thing to work, you need a way bigger pool in order to monetize, on top of getting the monthly fees...
MS will not make a dime on their investment for quite some time...and they do not care; They can take a few billions a year and subsidize it until it succeeds...Sony can not. Pretty simple, really. 🤔😀
 
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Topher

Gold Member
"Microsoft insinuates the growth of Xbox Game Pass has been “hampered by Sony’s desire to inhibit such growth” and Sony is using a variety of exclusivity deals to achieve this. Sony makes no secret of the fact they enter into agreements with third-party publishers to secure PS5 and/or PS4 exclusivity for new games or DLC, but there is a different kind of exclusivity deal we haven’t heard about before. Apparently, “Sony pays for “blocking rights” to prevent developers from adding content to Game Pass and other competing subscription services.” The exclusivity deals could explain why some games are added to PS Plus but never appear on Xbox Game Pass, or don’t appear on Game Pass until months or even years later.

On the other hand, Sony is apparently concerned that Microsoft potentially playing the same game with the Call of Duty franchise would mean that “Microsoft would gain an unattainable lead in subscription services.” This is despite Microsoft’s insistence that they have no intention of making Call of Duty an Xbox-exclusive franchise as it “would simply not be profitable.” This ongoing argument is just part of the debate ongoing over Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard, the outcome of which is likely to be heard next year. Until then, we may even hear more secrets from behind the scenes at Sony and Microsoft."

Source: https://www.playstationlifestyle.net/2022/08/10/sony-blocks-games-from-xbox-game-pass/

We all know Sony doesn't actually believe their own claim, but that's their basis for formally objecting to the acquisition. I think most here recognize the acquisition will make Microsoft more competitive with Sony compared to last generation, but has no chance whatsoever of putting them anywhere even remotely close to monopoly territory.

Claims by any lawyer tends to be hyperbolic, including Microsoft's. Sony isn't claiming Microsoft will have a monopoly as a result though. An "unattainable lead in subscriptions services" certainly doesn't translate to "monopoly".
 
Yea that's why the FTC is trying to break up Facebook.

Which is why I used "usually"...They normally turn a blind eye, mind some rare exceptions...You will have noticed, however, that MS has been sheltered for decades from facing such scrutiny. The reasons are pretty well-known and commonly discussed, so you can look them up! 😗
 
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EverydayBeast

thinks Halo Infinite is a new graphical benchmark
The Microsoft activison deal came up small across the country it made initial headlines but now it just looks like Microsoft begging for exclusives.
 

CatLady

Selfishly plays on Xbox Purr-ies X
I just want Microsoft to buy a bunch of Japanese companies, and make the waifu chasing degenerates of western society take to posting longwinded meltdown rants about how Xbox doesn't deserve JRPGs.

Is that too much to ask?

Hilarious! Now that is the first argument I've seen that almost convinces me it would be good for Xbox to get some weeb content. :messenger_tongue:
 
Yep. MS has some of the most active, influential lobbyists in Washington, and the US regulators do not usually mind what big tech companies are doing.


Or possibly there's no reason from any competitive standpoint why any regulating body would have any reason to block this acquisition, especially given the numerous statements from Microsoft saying that the popular Activision/Blizzard games will remain multiplatform. They'd still be well behind Sony and Tencent after the acquisition and there wouldn't be any area where it'd be close to a monopoly. Now if Microsoft decides after this to buy EA, or Take Two, then sure there would probably be reason to try and stop those purchases, but lobbyists are not the reason the Activision/Blizzard is very likely to be a part of Microsoft within the next year
 

Ozriel

Member
It would be one thing if the...
You know what, you win! I admit defeat...
It's like Groundhog day when it comes to this theme. You will not change my mind, and I obviously will not change yours...
I just wonder where you draw the limit. If MS were to close the deal and gun for another publisher or two, I would expect you to pop up and praise the vertues of..."competition"...
😀

Anything they'll buy comes to Gamepass. Is this a trick question?

But you should answer this question yourself first. Because I've seen you happily speculate about claims of a Sony $10bn acquisitions warchest and you've called for Sony to acquire Square and Capcom in the past.

This is just business.

Not only will they be absorbing huge losses year after year, but they have neither the technological infrastructure, nor the money to combat MS on this field. Sony CFO, lawyers, Jim Ryan...they all made the same comments ad nauseam...They can not transition right now, because it would significantly affect their budgets for their in-house teams, modifying their output...which would negatively impact their customers. How much has MS invested in GP between 2017 and now? Close to $80 billions in acquisitions alone? Not counting the third party deals, the 1$ subscription offers...among other things. Sony would be ecstatic to pour a fraction of that...which represents MS recent annual income, give or take. Sony would need eight years worth of benefits, plus a relatively similar could infrastructure to be able to dream about treading blows...
Pivoting right now would be financially suicidal...and waiting until the generation is over will grant GP a massive lead. MS changed the rules like only a handful companies on earth could, at any point. Business wise, kudos to them...but people insisting that it would be easy for Sony to shift gears and start flexing are delusional: The current 50 million PS Plus users are not enough...In fact, for the whole thing to work, you need a way bigger pool in order to monetize, on top of getting the monthly fees...
MS will not make a dime on their investment for quite some time...and they do not care; They can take a few billions a year and subsidize it until it succeeds...Sony can not. Pretty simple, really. 🤔😀

This Is a weird post. These acquisitions are tied to Microsoft, and are not tied to Gamepass economics. Why would they, when games will be sold at retail and when the corporation retains the value of the acquired publishers?

You make this illogical assumption because it pushes the narrative that GP is 'unsustainable' and loss leading. In what way does it make any sense to place the Zenimax and ABK deals as debits in the Gamepass economics?
 
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Ozriel

Member
Thank you, and some of us are old enough to remember how MS established Windows in the nineties. Nobody in their right mind wants MS to bow out...They are as legitimate as either Sony or Nintendo. What gamers should be worried about is MS forcing their way into the very top by re-enacting their "seek and destroy" philosophy, which they seem to have embraced again. They have no counter-weight, so if they go unchecked, they can force Sony out by outspending them six, seven, ten times until they cut them off...
And I do not like the perspective of a MS reigning unchallenged. Past events prove it...

This just reads like you're dismayed at the prospect of increased/improved competition from Microsoft this gen.

Complaints about 'monopoly' are weird since this gen started with Sony paying money to keep two AAA Bethesda games from Xbox for a year, extending exclusivity on FFVII, paying for two years exclusivity for two AAA JRPGs from Square (FF16, Forspoken) and rumors of attempts to do same for Starfield.


It's a hard sell to try to paint these acquisitions as an attempt to put Playstation out of business. They WILL drive Gamepass subs, which is one of the most significant metrics Satya and Spencer care about.
 
So they not anymore? or the deal has gone through?
sorry the title reads like it was past tense 😂
Actually they still are - ATVI stock is trading around $80 despite the deal price being $95. If you think this deal is going to go through that is $15 free a share.

For what it is worth, Warren Buffet bought over $5 billion worth of the stock back when it was trading around $75 for this exact reason.
 
It's not so much "adapting", rather Microsoft tacitly admitting it failed to do what Sony and Nintendo did and therefore is going to throw money at the problem instead. Not only that, but neither Bethesda nor ActiBliz had any sort of special relationship with Microsoft at the time of acquisition talks starting. It's literally a case of "I don't know you, you don't know me but here's a big truck of cash - shut up and take it".
Saying Bethesda and Microsoft didn't have a special relationship before the acquisition is just asinine. The Elder Scrolls series had been a PC only franchise until Bethesda decided to take the plunge and release their newest iteration, Morrowind, to the console realm with Xbox all the way back in 2002, before anyone knew if the series would translate well to gamepads and a TV screen (spoiler alert...it did).

As for Activision, they had a PR nightmare on their hands and decided the best way out was to be acquired by an interested party and get rid of problem management. Microsoft seems to be the only player able to afford such an endeavor, you cannot fault them for biting the bullet.
 
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Fredrik

Gold Member
What exclusives did they make for the PS platform, and what titles did they release on other platforms? Please develop, for the benefit of everybody.
Amiga:


I ran out of characters to post the Playstation games.
 
What I mentioned is a general tendency that characterizes japanese companies compared to western ones. Neither better, nor worse, mind you...It's just a different mindset, to a certain extent.
The only mindset Sony had when they heard the price-tag for Bethesda and Activision is "Damn, I ain't got that type of money".

begging no money GIF
 

Ozriel

Member
Microsoft (or rather Xbox/Microsoft Game Studios) has been "in the game" since 2000 (when it was formed). That's 22 years. They have had plenty of time to do what Sony has achieved. Plus Microsoft already had exposure to video games for years by way of having Windows (and all the games on PC), long before Sony launched the Playstation.

If you look at the history of it, Sony's acquisitions almost all started with it being approached or approaching developers to publish a game. Relationship went well and they agree to be acquired by Sony. Small companies (not even listed). Microsoft did do some of that very early on but seems to have stopped since.

It's not so much "adapting", rather Microsoft tacitly admitting it failed to do what Sony and Nintendo did and therefore is going to throw money at the problem instead. Not only that, but neither Bethesda nor ActiBliz had any sort of special relationship with Microsoft at the time of acquisition talks starting. It's literally a case of "I don't know you, you don't know me but here's a big truck of cash - shut up and take it".

Well yeah, they threw money at the problem by buying talent, IP and games for Gamepass. Same way Sony threw money at the problem to buy Bungie to help them land their GaaS MP efforts and to buy Nixxes to improve and speed up their PC ports. Same way Disney, Apple et al work. That's how smart acquisitions or mergers work...you fork out money to close your gaps.

Nobody does this to fit into weird forum purity tests. Weird how videogames attract some of the strangest commentary. Nobody's out there attacking Apple for purchasing PA Semi to make what's become their Apple Silicon chips.
 
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adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
Well yeah, they threw money at the problem by buying talent, IP and games for Gamepass. Same way Sony threw money at the problem to buy Bungie to help them land their GaaS MP efforts and to buy Nixxes to improve and speed up their PC ports. Same way Disney, Apple et al work. That's how smart acquisitions or mergers work...you fork out money to close your gaps.

Nobody does this to fit into weird forum purity tests. Weird how videogames attract some of the strangest commentary. Nobody's out there attacking Apple for purchasing PA Semi to make what's become their Apple Silicon chips.
As a gamer and Game Pass subscriber, I for one am thankful for the money that Microsoft is spending around. It's giving me one of the best experiences anyone can have.
 

N30RYU

Member
Did I age myself correclty? :messenger_tears_of_joy:

Hey I just played Monopoly with my boy the other day, I have the Super Mario Bros. set :messenger_beaming:


Its time for a Hotels board game remaster but you play as sony, MS or nintendo and buy companies



and you could set each company to develop exclusives to get you fixed incomes... or make them multiplatform to get you a big sum if others land in them
 
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