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Update: Activision has issued a statement in response to the report that there will be no Call of Duty title released in 2023.

“We have an exciting slate of premium and free-to-play Call of Duty experiences for this year, next year and beyond,” an Activision spokesperson tells Upcomer. “Reports of anything otherwise are incorrect. We look forward to sharing more details when the time is right.”

The original article follows.

Activision Blizzard won’t release a yearly edition of Call of Duty in 2023, according to a report by Bloomberg. This will be the first time in nearly 20 years that we won’t see a Call of Duty come out within the calendar year.

The lack of a 2023 release could be the result of Microsoft’s near $70 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard that should close sometime in June of 2023 if approved by the United States government. Activision Blizzard executives had been considering changing the cadence of Call of Duty release windows once news of the acquisition broke.

A big change for Call of Duty in 2023

Call of Duty: Vanguard launched in 2021 to disappointing sales and with a number of technical issues. Search and Destroy bugs and audio issues hampered the launch of the 2022 season of the Call of Duty League. Many professional players have said that they hope Microsoft changes how Call of Duty is developed.

It’s unclear what this news means for the Call of Duty League. We could see teams play on Vanguard or Modern Warfare 2 for an extra year. We could see major changes to how the league is run similarly to how Overwatch 2 is changing how many tank players Overwatch League teams employ. Sources close to the league believe that esports is not a major priority of the acquisition.

Multiple studios, including Raven Software, Treyarch, Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer Games work on the Call of Duty and Warzone franchises. The truncated development timeline that has had a new Call of Duty game come out every year since 2003 has caused a number of issues for each studio.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 will be released in the fall of 2022.  It will be a direct sequel to Modern Warfare 2019 and is being developed by Infinity Ward. The game was “built together from the ground up” alongside Warzone 2, according to Activision. Both games are being developed with a new game engine.

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