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Small band of gamers fail to block Microsoft Activision Blizzard bid

10 players teamed up to sue.

A group of gamers have failed in their attempt to sue Microsoft over its impending $68.7bn Activision Blizzard acquisition.

The 10-strong party lawyered up late last year to launch a lawsuit which claimed Microsoft's buyout would give the Xbox owner too much influence over the games industry "to foreclose rivals, limit output, reduce consumer choice, raise prices, and further inhibit competition".

This week, a judge dismissed the "so-called gamers' lawsuit" as it "does not plausibly allege the merger creates a reasonable probability of anticompetitive effects in any relevant market" (thanks, Foss Patents).

Newscast: Where does Microsoft go next to get its Activision Blizzard deal done?

While it's unlikely this ruling will effect the final outcome of the deal - which currently rests on the decisions of regulators in the US, UK and Europe - this didn't stop the judge giving their own opinion on the matter.

"Why would Microsoft make Call of Duty exclusive to its platforms thus resulting in fewer games sold?" Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley said. "What is it about the console market or PC games market and Microsoft's position in those markets that makes it plausible... Microsoft would take such steps?"

It's a question which Microsoft itself is busy trying to convince those regulators about - although it now has more time in Europe, as the European Commission recently extended its deadline as Microsoft reportedly looks likely to convince the EU it has done enough to get the deal done.

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Tom Phillips avatar

Tom Phillips


Tom is Eurogamer's Editor-in-chief. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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