Microsoft will bring Xbox PC games to NVIDIA’s GeForce Now cloud gaming service. Speaking at a press conference in Brussels today, Microsoft president Brad Smith announced the news as he tries to convince EU regulators to approve Activision Blizzard’s proposed acquisition, reports The Verge.
“Microsoft will be bringing its Xbox games that play on PCs to Nvidia’s GeForce Now cloud gaming service,” said Smith. “We will also bring all of Activision Blizzard’s titles including Call of Duty to GeForce Now.”
However, users will still have to purchase games separately before playing them on GeForce Now. The deal is simply a 10-year streaming right. According to the press release, Microsoft is committed to making its games available for streaming, regardless of where they are purchased – from the Windows Store, Steam or the Epic Games Store.
The announcement made no mention of Xbox Game Pass, which could include access to PC games, and NVIDIA vice president Phil Eisler said he could not discuss Game Pass.
However, Eisler says the deal includes a commitment to make Microsoft games available on GeForce Now “day-and-date or as close to day-and-date as we can” with their release on PC, including Minecraft, and will include Battle.net titles like Overwatch should the Activision Blizzard deal go through. Games should start arriving on GFN in a matter of weeks, though it could take a year to complete.
In exchange for this agreement, NVIDIA is now publicly supporting purchase by Microsoft of the Activision Blizzard gaming holding. The deal comes just hours after Microsoft announced a 10-year deal with Nintendo to bring Call of Duty to the company’s platforms. In this way, Microsoft has already secured the support of Nintendo.
Microsoft also offered Sony a similar 10-year deal about the new Call of Duty games. But the PlayStation maker hasn’t agreed to it yet, probably because it opposes Activision Blizzard’s acquisition, and any Call of Duty deal would help strengthen Microsoft’s position.
Microsoft hopes NVIDIA deal for Xbox games will influence regulators, or at least convince them that the software giant will not lock its games on its own streaming service.