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Gamer group refiles lawsuit against Microsoft ABK acquisition

New filing contains redacted information from internal Microsoft documents, including proposed deal with Sony

The group of consumers attempting to block Microsoft's proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard has amended and once again filed their lawsuit against the Xbox firm.

The suit, originally filed in December, was dismissed by a California judge last month because it "[lacked] allegations."

In her ruling, US District Judge Jacqueline Corley said the group's "general allegation that the merger may cause 'higher prices, less innovation, less creativity, less consumer choice, decreased output, and other potential anticompetitive effects' is insufficient."

The plaintiffs were given 20 days to refine their lawsuit and resubmit, with Reuters reporting the group has now done so.

The 73-page lawsuit now contains redacted information the plaintiffs say comes from Microsoft's internal documents, such as a strategy memo.

There are also redacted sections with details of the ten-year deal Microsoft offered to Sony to keep Activision games on PlayStation – a deal Sony told GamesIndustry.biz earlier this year was "inadequate on many levels."

These are compared with redacted details of the ten-year agreement Microsoft signed with Nintendo back in February.

Lawyers representing the group have served subpoenas for more information to Activision, Nintendo of America, Sony and more.

In a court filing last week, Microsoft's lawyers said the consumers' original case "relied lagrely on flawed legal arguments based on outdated Supreme Court cases," Reuters reports.

The lawyers also observed that the group "waited 11 months after the transaction was announced to file their lawsuit, and then wasted several additional months filing an implausible complaint."

A status hearing is scheduled to happen today.

James Batchelor avatar

James Batchelor


James Batchelor is Editor-in-Chief at GamesIndustry.biz. He is based in Essex and has been a B2B games journalist since 2006