Recent reports suggest that Microsoft executives were debating for a while whether to put new Call of Duty games on Game Pass on day one (ie, the day they’re released). This seems like something it should have figured out before spending $68.7 billion on CoD publisher Activision Blizzard, but it looks like Microsoft has finally made up its mind. According to Wall Street Journalthe company will indeed bring the next Call of Duty title directly to Game Pass when it arrives later this year.

This could mean Microsoft is leaving hundreds of millions of dollars in game sales on the table, given that each annual release of Call of Duty is one of the best-selling titles for that year. However, the company has struggled to significantly increase Game Pass subscriptions of late.

Putting a new Call of Duty title on there will certainly bring in new members. Microsoft will still make tons of money from in-game purchases, cross-platform sales (it agrees to release CoD games on PlayStation, Nintendo, and elsewhere for at least a decade after the Activision deal closes), and those who prefer to buy games directly on Xbox. Xbox owned games are it sells well of PlayStation as a whole. There’s always the possibility that Microsoft will raise the price of Game Pass to make up for some of the revenue it will likely lose from lower sales of the next Call of Duty entry for Xbox and PC.

Before Microsoft bought it, Activision largely eschewed the idea of ​​releasing its games on subscription services. While Call of Duty titles have been available on PlayStation Plus in the past, this has typically been years after the games were originally released.

After Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard closed late last year, the company said it would take some time for the publisher’s games to start showing up on Game Pass. To date only Diablo IV has joined the service.

Having a brand new Call of Duty game on a subscription service on day one marks a major shift in strategy, albeit one that is consistent with recent comments from Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer. “Our intention is that the full portfolio of games from ZeniMax, Activision Blizzard and XGS — Xbox Game Studios — will be on Game Pass, day one,” Spencer said Game file in February. Xbox fans will also be happy to know that Microsoft’s long-standing approach of releasing all first-party releases on Game Pass on day one is likely to remain.

We’ll likely learn more about Microsoft’s plans for Call of Duty and other Activision games when it comes to Game Pass at the annual showcase on June 9. The main showcase will be followed by one focused on a ‘favorite franchise’, which is widely expected to be CoD.

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