Microsoft Activision Blizzard Sony

Microsoft's effort to acquire Call of Duty publisher Activision Blizzard was already starting to look quite dire, but an appeals process is currently underway, we're told. If unsuccessful, however, Microsoft will apparently need to wait a full decade before it will be able to try again.

Over on ResetEra, the entire saga has been chronicled in a 900+ page official thread, with the OP (Idas) putting their skills as a European antitrust lawyer to fantastic use. Now, we aren't lawyers (preferring to work in our pyjamas), but we can confirm that on page 339, under article 11.29 of the final report, it reads:

"Prohibition would be affected by accepting undertakings under section 82 of the Act or making an order under section 84 of the Act, prohibiting the Merger and preventing the Parties from attempting to merge for a further period: our normal practice would be to prevent a future merger between the Parties for the next ten years, absent a change of circumstances."

We won't pretend to understand the full nuance or complete context here, but that looks pretty clear-cut to our layman's eyes. Recall that Microsoft recently said ten years was plenty of time for Sony to create its own Call of Duty competitor; we imagine it could do the same in a similar time span.

Do you think this deal is well and truly dead, or does this story have a twist or two left in it? Let us know in the comments section below.