Microsoft signs agreement to bring Call of Duty to Nintendo players

Nintendo players can expect to have Call of Duty the same day it releases on Xbox, with all of the same features.


Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard has been in the works for a while. In a bid to quell the concerns of regulators, Microsoft has made promises regarding releasing Call of Duty across multiple platforms, including competitors’ consoles. Today Microsoft has revealed it is serious about this with a 10-year contract with Nintendo to bring the hit series to Nintendo players.

A statement from Microsoft regarding bringing Call of Duty to Nintendo players

Source: Twitter

On February 20, 2023, Brad Smith, Vice Chair and President of Microsoft, took to Twitter to share an official statement that Microsoft and Nintendo have negotiated and signed a “binding 10-year legal agreement” which will see Call of Duty coming to Nintendo platforms the same day as Xbox. Read the full statement below.

Microsoft and Nintendo have now negotiated and signed a binding 10-year legal agreement to bring Call of Duty to Nintendo players – the same day as Xbox, with full feature and content parity – so they can experience Call of Duty just as Xbox and PlayStation gamers enjoy Call of Duty. We are committed to providing long term equal access to Call of Duty to other gaming platforms, bringing more choice to more players and more competition to the gaming market.

Microsoft is currently deeply involved in hearings over its acquisition of Activision Blizzard. On February 21, 2023, Microsoft is set to participate in a hearing with the European Union committee over anti-competitive fears. This has been an ongoing situation since Microsoft announced the acquisition in January 2022.

As for the agreement between Nintendo and Microsoft, that last part of the statement is of particular interest: more competition to the gaming market. It’s safe to say that Microsoft’s Xbox Series X|S consoles do not currently compete at the same level as Sony’s PlayStation 5, with the PS5 outselling Microsoft’s current-gen system. Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard could threaten Sony’s healthy dominance.

While the acquisition hasn’t been cleared by EU regulators, it’s interesting that Microsoft has already set in place this agreement with Nintendo. It’s been a long time since a Call of Duty game was released on a Nintendo console, with the last being Call of Duty: Ghosts on Wii U. The wording does indicate that this agreement isn’t limited to the Nintendo Switch, but will in fact apply to whatever console the company is cooking up next.

Be sure to keep it locked to Shacknews as we bring you the latest on the Microsoft-Activision acquisition. There will no doubt be news surfacing soon about the EU regulator forum happening today.

Guides Editor

Hailing from the land down under, Sam Chandler brings a bit of the southern hemisphere flair to his work. After bouncing round a few universities, securing a bachelor degree, and entering the video game industry, he's found his new family here at Shacknews as a Guides Editor. There's nothing he loves more than crafting a guide that will help someone. If you need help with a guide, or notice something not quite right, you can message him on X: @SamuelChandler 

From The Chatty
  • reply
    February 21, 2023 1:50 AM

    Sam Chandler posted a new article, Microsoft signs agreement to bring Call of Duty to Nintendo players

    • reply
      February 21, 2023 2:39 AM

      I thought the EU said "nuh uh, hold a sec" to the ActiviBlizzsoft deal?

      I swear, we're gonna reach the PS6/XSXxXxX generation and will still hear if this thing is happening or not 🙃

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        February 21, 2023 5:14 AM

        They and FTC have all issued complaints, but that gives the chance for MS to response, react, and modify activities to address those complaints. This certainly appears to be one of them.

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        February 21, 2023 6:31 AM

        They postured

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        February 21, 2023 8:09 AM

        Yeah the EU, England, and US governments haven't approved it yet. This is just Microsoft saying that if the deal goes through it will sell Call of Duty on Nintendo platforms.

        The buyout offer has a closure deadline of July 18th, at which point the merger is dead and Microsoft needs to pay Activision a $3 billion fee. However it is unclear what is going to happen since I believe the FTC didn't schedule their hearing on the buyout until August. So who the fuck knows what is going to happen. More than likely Microsoft/Activision will need to sign a new offer.

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      February 21, 2023 6:29 AM

      Got a good chuckle from this response:

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        February 21, 2023 6:55 AM

        All seriousness, if they're going to do feature and content parity then would they be focusing on Nintendo's next platform?

        I can see them achieving parity on next-gen portable hardware that is comparable to a PS4 in performance but not with Switch hardware that is somewhere between 360/PS3 and XB1/PS4, but we'll see

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          February 21, 2023 7:56 AM

          If Nintendo's next console is comparatively underpowered like the Switch was they will just stream it like they already do for several Switch games.

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            February 21, 2023 8:02 AM

            lol, If

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            February 21, 2023 8:14 AM

            Based on rumored specs for the scrapped 2021 revision (which I trust since the same sources nailed Ampere and Lovelace specs) I'm expecting somewhere around Steam Deck level performance, except without the shitty battery life and with DLSS.

            That puts it well within range for feature parity. This might also be conservative since its based on what they punted on in 2021, but again we'll see. They might very well just go with that same hardware.

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              February 21, 2023 8:29 AM

              This is also contingent on developers still targeting a minimum spec of PS4 and Maxwell-class GPUs. I have no idea when that'll change but I don't feel like anyone is in a rush to ship hardware that only works on PS5/Xbox Series or Turing+ class GPUs.

              Almost all of the biggest games this year are going to be playable on consoles from a decade ago. I think the only exceptions are FF16 and Starfield, but none of the Activision games like CoD or Diablo or Overwatch seem like they're in any rush to cut off the vast majority of hardware out there.

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            February 21, 2023 8:23 AM

            I think Switch was fine way back in 2017 - remember, this was three years before the current consoles and right at the launch of the $500 Xbox One X and PS4 Pro.

            Mario Odyssey and Smash looked amazing and ran 60fps. Nobody had a problem with the visuals or performance.

            But now in 2023 yeah, it's very old, struggling in many cases with third-party ports.

    • reply
      February 21, 2023 6:46 AM

      Cloud Edition

    • reply
      February 21, 2023 8:37 AM


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      February 21, 2023 9:56 AM

      They should sign a similar deal with Sony and then just port the Switch versions to the PS5.

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