Microsoft eyes Xbox Game Pass launch for next Call of Duty

Arrival of Call of Duty would help attract more people to Xbox Game Pass
An undated image of Xbox Game Pass poster. — IGN
An undated image of Xbox Game Pass poster. — IGN

Microsoft, a tech giant, intends to offer the next iteration of the "Call of Duty" videogame to its subscription service, a change from its longstanding practice of solely selling the title separately.

However, the change is anticipated to be disclosed at the company's annual Xbox showcase on June 9. Microsoft did not reply to requests for comment right away. The revelation was initially reported by Gadgets360.

Microsoft purchased "Call of Duty" as part of its $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, which concluded late last year. In addition, the first-person shooter video game is one of the most profitable entertainment assets, earning more than $30 billion in total sales.

In recent years, Activision has produced new editions of the game every year, each costing roughly $70. The news comes just days after Xbox President Sarah Bond stated at a conference that the firm intends to distribute all first-party Xbox titles on Game Pass on the day of their release.

Read more: Xbox Game Pass — Building a library for long-term success

A tech giant operates Game Pass, a membership service that charges a fee for access to Xbox and other studios' games. Moreover, in recent years, Microsoft has aggressively expanded its Netflix-style gaming subscription services to shatter the dominance of PlayStation systems manufactured by Japanese competitor Sony Corporation.

Microsoft announced in February that Game Pass has 34 million members, up from 25 million in 2022. Analysts said the arrival of "Call of Duty" — a brand with a strong and passionate fan base — would help attract more people to Game Pass, but it might have an impact on the title's total sales.

"Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III," which was published in November 2023, is the second-best-selling game this year. Circana, an industry tracker, reports that it trails Sony's "Helldivers II".