Microsoft recently struck a deal with Nintendo to bring Call of Duty to the Switch should its Activision Blizzard deal be approved. The move comes as Sony doubts how accessible the Xbox creator would allow the FPS juggernaut to be on other consoles. Another important question, however, is how well could the Nintendo Switch run Call of Duty, anyway? According to one national watchdog, not very.
The United Kingdom's competition regulator - the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) - has posted its provisional findings (opens in new tab) into the deal, where the question is discussed in greater detail.
"We have also seen evidence that large shooter games do not run as well on Nintendo's consoles due to its technical differentiation," the report reads. "One third party submitted that graphically intensive shooters may often be targeted originally at PlayStation and Xbox due to the specific characteristics of their console performance and that porting to the Nintendo Switch may require financial investment and compromises on graphical quality or the use of cloud-gaming solutions."
On cloud gaming, the report notes that Resident Evil Village was able to launch on Switch with "gameplay with levels of graphical fidelity comparable to that found on a high-level PC, PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X". Still, however, the watchdog remains unconvinced.
"We consider that there are currently significant differences between cloud gaming and gaming on consoles (e.g., the need for an internet connection to stream games from cloud gaming services)," the report continues. "Also, the ability of the Switch to connect to a third-party cloud gaming service provider would not make it a closer competitor to Xbox and PlayStation in the console gaming market."
Microsoft has previously spoken about the Nintendo Switch's ability to handle Call of Duty. As we recently reported, the company's president, Brad Smith, said "we will ensure our games work exactly the way people would expect," to a high technical standard.
What Call of Duty looks like on the Nintendo Switch remains to be seen, be it an Xbox-style release that leans on cloud technology or something more akin to Call of Duty Mobile. Judging by the one report, it may have to be the latter to convince regulators.
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