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Microsoft claims Sony "briefing people in Brussels" in fresh COD parity drama

"Nothing could be further from the truth."

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2

The ongoing spat between Microsoft and Sony over whether the former should own Activision Blizzard - and with it, Call of Duty - took a fresh turn over the weekend.

In an eye-opening Twitter thread, Microsoft chief communications officer Frank X. Shaw claimed Sony was "briefing people in Brussels claiming Microsoft is unwilling to offer them parity for Call of Duty if we acquire Activision".

"Nothing could be further from the truth," he continued, before restating a number of Microsoft's familiar arguments.

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Brussels is, of course, home to the EU regulators who are reportedly set to issue Microsoft an antitrust warning over the proposed $68.7bn deal.

Such a move would pile further pressure on Microsoft's acquisition hopes, following intervention by the UK's Competition and Markets Authority and the US Federal Trade Commission, which have both moved to check the deal.

"We've been clear we've offered Sony a 10-year deal to give them parity on timing, content, features, quality, playability, and any other aspect of the game," Shaw continued, referencing Microsoft's previous offer of a decade-long formal deal.

"We've also said we're happy to make this enforceable through a contract, regulatory agreements, or other means.

"Sony is the console market leader and it would defy business logic for us to exclude PlayStation gamers from the Call of Duty ecosystem.

"Our goal is to bring Call of Duty and other games - as we did with Minecraft - to more people around the world so they can play them where and how they want," Shaw concluded.

Microsoft is expected to offer the EU a number of concessions to ensure its Activision Blizzard bid is accepted, with the details of these concessions reportedly due any day now.

PlayStation boss Jim Ryan reportedly flew to Brussels last year to meet EU regulators in person and express Sony's concerns over the deal face-to-face.

Speaking to IGN last week, Xbox boss Phil Spencer struck a positive tone, and stated he was "more confident now" that the deal will succeed than he "was a year ago, simply based on the information I have and the discussions that we've been having".

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Tom Phillips

Deputy Editor

Tom is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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