Tech giant Microsoft has announced it will be taking over Call Of Duty publisher Activision Blizzard for an estimated £50billion.
The move comes less than two years after Microsoft's previous mega-money purchase of Skyrim producer Bethesda ZeniMax for a tasty £5.5billion.
The latest move will not only be the biggest of its kind but will also see Xbox effectively take control of massive legacy titles like Call Of Duty and World Of Warcraft.
In a statement from its news centre, Microsoft said it was completing the deal in "an all-cash transaction valued at $68.7billion, inclusive of Activision Blizzard’s net cash".
It added: "When the transaction closes, Microsoft will become the world’s third-largest gaming company by revenue, behind Tencent and Sony."
But what does this mind-bogglingly big lump of cash actually mean for people who play the games?
What does the Activision Blizzard buyout mean for gamers?
There is no doubt the move will bolster the strength of the Xbox Game Pass. You only need to look at the big money battles going on in the TV streaming world between the likes of Amazon, Netflix and Disney to see just how much money there is to be made through streaming and rental services.
It is expected that the Xbox Games Pass will see some of the titles bought in the purchase appearing on the monthly payment service.
Will Call of Duty become an Xbox exclusive?
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Microsoft hasn't confirmed exactly which of its titles will be going exclusive for its platforms, although Bloomberg reports that Microsoft will keep some of its games for exclusives while others will remain multi-platform.
Call Of Duty makes shed loads of cash on other platforms outside of Microsoft's. According to NPD, Call Of Duty: Vanguard was the bestselling game on PlayStation last year and so it makes little sense to limit what could effectively be an opportunity to sell to the competition.
As part of the deal, Phil Spencer will be promoted to the CEO of Microsoft gaming when it closes. According to Bloomberg, he said: “I’ll just say to players out there who are playing Activision Blizzard games on Sony’s platform: it’s not our intent to pull communities away from that platform and we remained committed to that.”
It will, of course, remain to be seen what the final decision is about games going exclusive for Microsoft's platforms.
However, in the past, Microsoft has allowed new buys to finish their previously existing deals and commitments with other firms, the Sixth Axis reports.
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