Getting Call Of Duty On Switch Would "Definitely" Require Some Work, Phil Spencer Says

Microsoft has that experience already with Minecraft, Spencer points out.


Microsoft and Nintendo have agreed to terms to put Call of Duty on Nintendo platforms for the next 10 years if Microsoft's bid to buy Activision Blizzard goes through. But actually getting Call of Duty to run on the relatively less powerful Switch? That might not be so easy, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer has said.

Speaking to The New York Times, Spencer said there was "definitely work" to be done to make a Call of Duty game perform well on Switch.

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In a separate interview with The Washington Post, Spencer said if Microsoft's deal to buy Activision Blizzard goes through, the Call of Duty series might not show up on a Nintendo system for some time. It would "likely take a little bit of time" to release a Call of Duty game on a Nintendo system, Spencer said, though he did not say anything about which existing or future Call of Duty game could come to Switch.

Assuming Microsoft's deal goes through, Spencer said he intends for future Call of Duty games to release across all major platforms at the same time.

"Once we get into the rhythm of this, our plan would be that when [a Call of Duty game] launches on PlayStation, Xbox and PC, that it would also be available on Nintendo at the same time," he said.

Asked if the Switch is a capable enough machine to run Call of Duty smoothly, Spencer pointed to Minecraft as an example. He said Microsoft would do "specific work" to help make any game run well on Switch to "support their platform completely." He mentioned how Microsoft already does this with the Switch and PlayStation versions of its Minecraft franchise.

"Minecraft and Call of Duty are different games. But from how you get games onto Nintendo, how you run a development team that is targeting multiple platforms, that's experience we have," he said.

Spencer did not address the possibility of Call of Duty coming to Switch as a streaming cloud game like many others have before it. The streaming option could, in theory, allow a more technically demanding game like Call of Duty to perform adequately on a lower-spec machine like the Switch, though it all depends on how strong and consistent the internet connection is.

2013's Call of Duty: Ghosts was the last entry in the series to come to a Nintendo platform, in this case the Wii U. There is a history of high-end shooters coming to Switch with faithful adaptations, including Doom Eternal, which was an impressive port.

The announcement that Call of Duty is coming to Nintendo pending the approval of Microsoft's bid to buy Activision Blizzard has been seen by many as a political maneuver by Microsoft to encourage the Federal Trade Commission to approve the deal. A major sticking point has been around Call of Duty potentially becoming exclusive to Xbox. Microsoft offered Sony a 10-year licensing deal for Call of Duty, too, but the company has yet to confirm whether or not it has accepted it.

The FTC is reportedly planning to discuss the deal in a closed-door talk tomorrow, December 8, and a vote could be handed down at that time. It's been reported that the FTC was "likely" to file a lawsuit to potentially block the deal from happening.

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