Nintendo gets Call of Duty for the next 10 years — Can the Switch handle it?

Nintendo Switch Call of Duty
(Image credit: Nintendo, Activision)

Xbox has signed a decade-long deal with Nintendo to bring its future catalogue of games, particularly Call of Duty, to players within the Nintendo ecosystem. The specifics behind this deal are somewhat vague, with the initial announcement tweet from Brad Smith specifying that it will be bringing "Xbox games to Nintendo's gamers."

This phrasing doesn't refer to the Nintendo Switch at any point, which could have a few implications, especially since it's hard to imagine the console's hardware could handle a game as graphically demanding as Call of Duty. It's also not uncommon for certain games to launch on the platform through Cloud, like Assassin's Creed: Odyssey and Resident Evil Village.

However, the claim that it will be available "the same day as Xbox, with full feature and content parity" is peculiar. I wouldn't consider a cloud launch of Call of Duty on Nintendo Switch as equal to what one could get on Xbox. Considering the potentially worse visuals and less robust graphical features, that seems like it would be objectively worse.

Unless Nintendo has powerful new hardware on the horizon or Xbox Cloud Gaming makes its way the Nintendo Switch, it's difficult to imagine what Microsoft envisions this deal looking like. But if it does have to do with the Xbox Cloud Gaming, it would make more sense.

The deal highlights that Xbox games in general are also coming to Nintendo players, but it doesn't specify whether or not they will be available day one. This probably just means certain titles will make it over on a case-by-case basis, whereas the Call of Duty deal is a constant for the next decade.

Regardless, this all depends on whether or not Microsoft can successfully acquire Activision Blizzard. The company will be defending the validity of its acquisition at the European Commission today. The hearing will not be public, but we are looking forward to the aftermath.

Momo Tabari
Contributing Writer

Self-described art critic and unabashedly pretentious, Momo finds joy in impassioned ramblings about her closeness to video games. She has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism & Media Studies from Brooklyn College and five years of experience in entertainment journalism. Momo is a stalwart defender of the importance found in subjectivity and spends most days overwhelmed with excitement for the past, present and future of gaming. When she isn't writing or playing Dark Souls, she can be found eating chicken fettuccine alfredo and watching anime.