Have you ever heard about the dating advice that you shouldn't dote on the opposite sex all the time for them to like you? Well, that's what Phil Spencer is doing right now.
According to an interview with The Times, the long-time Xbox boss downplayed the importance of Microsoft's still-ongoing acquisition attempt of Activision Blizzard.
Apparently, Call of Duty isn't the reason why Microsoft wanted to buy the gaming publisher for nearly $70 billion, in the first place. Spencer explains that the main reason was for Microsoft to "catch up" with Google and Apple in the mobile market. Furthermore, Spencer says that Microsoft can survive if the deal doesn't happen.
In Spencer's words, the Activision Blizzard deal isn't "some linchpin to the long term - Xbox will exist if this deal doesn't go through."
Despite the brave face that Spencer is putting on, he did note that Activision Blizzard is an "important acquisition." Spencer adds that he wants the video game market to have more players, citing the smartphone market as an example.
At the moment, the console space is split between Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft. However, regulators agree that Sony and Microsoft are direct competitors against each other.
Don't expect Spencer's latest statements to change the focus of the European Commission, the UK CMA, and the US's FTC regarding the acquisition. Most of the regulatory bodies that haven't decided yet have focused their sights on Call of Duty, and for a good reason - it's one of the most profitable gaming properties today.
For what it's worth, Microsoft has offered multiple concessions to make the deal happen. Its previous offer to bring Call of Duty to Nintendo consoles is now "legally binding." The same offer is also on the table for the PlayStation platform, but the world's leading console manufacturer isn't any closer to signing on the dotted line.
Activision Blizzard is expected to release a new Call of Duty title by Sledgehammer Games later this year. The said game will reportedly continue the story of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 by Infinity Ward.