We've seen Microsoft move away from the goal of sheer console sales for years now - the team has almost given up the ghost with PlayStation and has accepted that Sony is likely to sell more systems for the time being. Having said that, the acquisition of Activision Blizzard and the Call of Duty franchise seemed to provide a good opportunity to close that sales gap, but after this week's Phil Spencer interview we feel that now more than ever - Microsoft really isn't bothered if you switch over to an Xbox console just for Call of Duty's sake.
Yep, after poring over the interview a few times now, one comment — and specifically the way Phil delivered it — has really stuck out to us. The Xbox boss reiterated that Call of Duty fans on any platform are still welcome post-acquisition, and he outright said that Microsoft isn't trying to use the popular franchise as a way to sell Xbox consoles.
"For Call of Duty players on PlayStation, and in the future on Nintendo, I want you to feel 100% part of the community.
We have no goal of somehow trying to use Call of Duty to get you to buy an Xbox console.
I want the Call of Duty nation to feel supported across all platforms."
There's something about the way Phil delivered this statement that just hit, and it really rang home what this acquisition is all about, or perhaps more importantly, what it's not about. The Xbox boss usually knows exactly what to say and when to say it, and this Call of Duty comment seemed super genuine to us - we can absolutely see Xbox supporting CoD on PlayStation well beyond its 10-year agreement, at least under Phil's leadership.
Of course, it goes without saying that any tech company wants its hardware to sell well, and Microsoft would be very glad to see its Xbox console sales surge in the years to come. And yet, the team really doesn't seem bothered about forcing PlayStation out by acquiring franchises like Call of Duty, and we have even more reason to believe them now that the acquisition has gone through.
Anyway, we've dropped a timestamp of this discussion up above so you can see whether you agree with us here. Does Phil sound like Xbox genuinely isn't bothered about using CoD to sell consoles?