The developers working on the series have been fantasizing about what their lives would be like without Activision Blizzard for a while.
Very early in 2022, Xbox broke the news that it was in the process of acquiring Activision Blizzard for almost $70 billion. As 2023 is about to start, not only is the deal still to come to fruition, but it is still a long way from completion. That hasn’t stopped some longtime Call of Duty developers from fantasizing about how an Xbox-led Activision could change the way things work behind the scenes.
Jack Burrows, who previously worked as a level designer on the Call of Duty series, recently told the Kiwi Talkz podcast (thanks, ComicBook) that he and the rest of the team would daydream about Xbox being in charge. “We would think about it and talk about it being like ‘I wonder if this will change’ or if you know ‘this process won’t be like this anymore’ or if we’ll have more freedom to do whatever here. and there or things like that,” Burrows revealed.
As for what exactly Xbox might change about Call of Duty if it ever merges with Activision Blizzard, Burrows admitted that while it’s fun to wonder, most things with the series itself will probably stay the same. Call of Duty is a giant, perhaps the biggest in the industry, so making drastic changes to a series that “prints money” just wouldn’t make sense.
Despite Xbox’s repeated attempts to make the rest of the industry realize that it’s not in its best interest to change anything about Call of Duty, PlayStation and various regulators around the world remain unconvinced. PlayStation still thinks that Xbox will eventually make Call of Duty console exclusive. That’s despite Xbox offering its rival a decade-long commitment, a deal PlayStation reportedly turned down.
While Xbox may not want to change anything about how it makes Call of Duty games, there will be general hope that it will implement some bigger changes behind the scenes if it acquires Activision Blizzard. The results of an investigation published before the merger announcement accused the studio that Xbox is seeking to acquire of harboring a toxic work culture.
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