Sony told Brazil's Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE) that Xbox's acquisition of Activision would be anticompetitive. And in response, Xbox have accused Sony of paying developers to "block" their games from going on Game Pass. Could such an accusation possibly be true?
Xbox are currently in the process of acquiring Activision. But because this is such a huge company, Xbox don't just need to appease US authorities, they also need to be compliant with other legal authorities around the world. One such legal authority is Brazil's Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE), who Sony have already complained to. They told CADE that the acquisition would create a monopoly and that it would be anticompetitive. But in response, Xbox have made an absolutely damning accusation against Sony to the CADE.
Xbox Accuse Sony Of Paying Devs To "Block" Their Games
Xbox have responded to Sony's claims of their Activision acquisition being uncompetitive by accusing Sony of paying developers to block their games being on Game Pass. This would be horrendous if true, but the lawyers are still working through the details.
Per the VGC, this is exactly what Microsoft have claimed in documents published by CADE:
Considering that exclusivity strategies have been at the core of Sony’s strategy to strengthen its presence in the games industry, and that Sony is a leader in the distribution of digital games, Sony’s concern with possible exclusivity of Activision‘s content is incoherent, to say the least. It only reveals, once again, a fear about an innovative business model that offers high-quality content at low costs to gamers, threatening a leadership that has been forged from a device-centric and exclusivity-focused strategy over the years.
Indeed, Microsoft’s ability to continue expanding Game Pass has been obstructed by Sony’s desire to inhibit such growth. Sony pays for ‘blocking rights’ to prevent developers from adding content to Game Pass and other competing subscription services.
Of course, if Sony are doing this, then that must be hindering the growth of Game Pass considerably (although they've made it cheaper yet again). But as we say, we have no idea whether this is true yet, that's up to the lawyers to work out. It must be based on some element of truth though, otherwise it would be an outrageous claim to make out of nowhere.
What do you think? Would Sony do such a dastardly thing?
Yes, they bloody would! Check out the latest Sony crime...