Why Modern Warfare 2 Will Likely Be the Last Time PlayStation Gamers Get Exclusive CoD Content

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Modern Warfare 2 is set to release this fall, but it may be the last time PlayStation players will receive exclusive Call of Duty content.

The Call of Duty franchise has been a dominating powerhouse in the gaming world since the original Call of Duty in 2003. Its next instalment is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, not to be confused with the 2009 game of the same name, and a recent Modern Warfare 2 teaser trailer confirmed it will be launching this fall. Fans learned they would be following fan-favourite Simon “Ghost” Riley and other iconic members of Task Force 141 for yet another adventure. While this direct sequel to 2019’s Modern Warfare is greatly anticipated, I left many PlayStation players wondering what will happen with the platform’s typical exclusive content.

This January, Microsoft acquired Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. This adds quite a few big-name titles into Microsoft’s already impressive collection, including headliners such as World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Hearthstone, and Call of Duty. Many were concerned this acquisition would mean Call of Duty games would become Xbox exclusives, but Xbox head Phil Spencer reassured the community that they had a “desire to keep Call of Duty on Playstation.” As of this writing, it’s less clear what the acquisition will mean for the recent pattern of exclusive Call of Duty modes and other content coming to Sony consoles.

The End of the Call of Duty Deal Between Sony and Activision

Since 2014, Playstation users have benefited from owning Sony consoles if they played any Call of Duty games. From modes like Modern Warfare‘s Special Ops Survival Mode that was only playable on PS4s for a year to an exclusive zombie “Onslaught” mode in Black Ops Cold War, as well as exclusive deals such as Tier Skips, in-game bundles, and bonus weapon XP, the benefits were plentiful. Concerning Modern Warfare 2, it was first reported by CharlieIntel that early access to the beta will be available first for PS4 and PS5, though there has been no official confirmation by Activision.

Now that Microsoft has obtained Activision Blizzard, it makes sense that the franchise would no longer provide such bonuses for a competitor’s console, which could make Modern Warfare 2 the last Call of Duty game to benefit from Playstation bonuses. By 2026, it seems likely that Microsoft will have full control as long as negotiations go well, and the Sony-Activision agreement may be tossed aside or altered significantly.

Rumours suggest past and future Call of Duty games will be made available on Xbox Game Pass, which would make them far less of an investment than the full $60 on PlayStation. Many classic Call of Duty games, including Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and Call of Duty 2, are already available on Xbox because of backward compatibility. At the moment, Xbox Game Pass maintains an impressive 25 million monthly subscribers, so adding Call of Duty to the library of beloved titles that already includes HaloForza, Apex Legends, and The Elder Scrolls could be a brilliant marketing move. It seems to be more of a question of “when” Call of Duty will be on Xbox Game Pass, rather than “if” it will.

With such impactful changes shaking the industry, Xbox and PlayStation fans will have to consider their options for which console best fits their interests and is the most financially viable. Still, the Sony-Activision deal may not expire or be altered in any significant ways, as the deal may also be in place for Warzone 2, which is on track for release later this year alongside Modern Warfare 2. At this point, only time will tell.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 will release on October 28, 2022.

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