Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer showed up at BlizzCon 2023 to talk Blizzard's history and future as part of Xbox

BlizzCon 2023 Phil Spencer
(Image credit: Blizzard Entertainment)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft finalized its acquisition of Activision Blizzard back on Oct. 13, 2023.
  • Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer took to the stage during the opening ceremony at BlizzCon 2023. 
  • The head of the Xbox organization praised Blizzard Entertainment's history with games like StarCraft, while talking about Xbox and Blizzard will work to build a future of inclusion and trust. 

The opening ceremony at BlizzCon kicked off with an appearance from Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer. 

Microsoft recently finished its acquisition of Activision Blizzard for almost $69 billion, adding Blizzard Entertainment to the greater Xbox first-party organization. As a result, BlizzCon 2023 is not only the first in-person BlizzCon to be held since 2019, but also the first BlizzCon taking place under Microsoft. 

Taking to the stage, Spencer discussed Blizzard Entertainment's history, talking about how the company has always created unique experiences and communities through games like StarCraft 2.

"Now that Blizzard is part of Xbox, we will nurture the essence of what makes Blizzard unique," Spencer said, adding that "The future of Blizzard is brighter than ever."

The head of Xbox also took time to carefully say that Xbox and Blizzard will work together to build a future of inclusion and trust.

Inclusion and trust for the future

Back in 2021, Activision Blizzard was hit with a massive lawsuit hit, alleging that the company had allowed rampant abuse and sexual harassment. The following months saw a number of employees fired, while Microsoft reached a deal to acquire Activision Blizzard on Jan. 18, 2022. Following the closure of the deal on Oct. 13, 2023, we learned that Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick will be leaving the company at the end of the year. 

Analysis: Fun to see, but the future will be telling

It's great to see Phil Spencer at BlizzCon, taking part in the celebration at the newest part of the Xbox organization. It's also going to be key for Xbox to deliver on what they've said, helping Blizzard to foster a more positive environment. Unlike prior Activision Blizzard leadership, Microsoft is allowing unionization efforts to take place, which is one solid step in the right direction, as all game developers deserve the right  to a union. 

For more details on all things BlizzCon 2023, be sure to check out our Live Blog!

Samuel Tolbert
Freelance Writer

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.