In the face of increased pressure from international regulators, Microsoft has committed to making Call of Duty available on PlayStation consoles for "several more years," beyond the scope of the pre-existing deal between Sony and Activision Blizzard in the event that its acquisition of the latter sees approval.
The news comes via The Verge, which reports that Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer promised as much to PlayStation president and CEO Jim Ryan earlier this year. Spencer has since confirmed the pledge to The Verge, saying "In January, we provided a signed agreement to Sony to guarantee Call of Duty on PlayStation, with feature and content parity, for at least several more years beyond the current Sony contract, an offer that goes well beyond typical gaming industry agreements."
Although Spencer has made similar public comments in the past, the existence of a written promise to Ryan is the firmest commitment yet made on the subject.
Regulatory bodies in the U.S. were already eyeing Microsoft's $68.7 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Last week, the U.K. Competition and Markets Authority declared the deal would require a more in-depth review because of its high likelihood of stifling competition in the games industry.
For his part, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick says he still believes the acquisition will see approval and close in Microsoft's fiscal year ending in June 2023.