Xbox slams PlayStation’s “block fees” that stop games coming to Game Pass

Andrew Highton
xbox game pass and playstation logos

In a document regarding Microsoft’s potential capture of Activision Blizzard, the report states that the Xbox brand believes Sony and PlayStation pay extra money to game developers to stop certain titles from appearing on Xbox Game Pass.

It’s been months since the groundbreaking announcement, but Microsoft’s announcement to buy Activision Blizzard still doesn’t feel real in many ways it’s that gigantic.

Following Microsoft’s intention to acquire Bethesda, the green brand made even bigger strides to absorb the super studio behind the likes of Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Overwatch, and many more.

The deal has many obstacles to clear before it can go through and in a recent document sent by Microsoft to CADE (Brazil’s Administrative Council for Economic Defense) we learned that Microsoft has “been obstructed by Sony’s desire to inhibit such growth.”

PlayStation blocking rights to Xbox Game Pass

In the official document, Microsoft said: “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.”

Microsoft is implying that Sony has no grounds for complaints when it comes to this deal, even if it would mean some of the industry’s biggest franchises all falling under one banner.

The argument continued: “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.”

This is certainly an eye-catching detail as it possibly suggests that Sony fears the Xbox Game Pass model, after all, the success of the subscription service has led to the new and improved PS Plus service.

Sony has already submitted their thoughts to CADE on the matter and it’s believed there are concerns over the future existence of series’ such as Call of Duty not appearing on PlayStation, despite Microsoft saying it always will.

It’s probably going to be some time until this matter is resolved, given that there’s so much evidence to consider, so it could be a while until the deal reaches its conclusion.