The industry has cast doubt over Call of Duty’s longevity, with numerous analyst reports saying that the series had reached a plateau, or was even in decline. I’m afraid news of Call of Duty’s death have been greatly exaggerated.
That big, back-patting press release that we’ve been wondering about has finally come through, with Activision proud to boast that the latest Call of Duty has smashed its own records, and that Black Ops 2 has generated $1Bn in income – quicker than the last Call of Duty game, taking just 15 days to reach the milestone.
"In order for Call of Duty to remain the entertainment juggernaut that it is, and keep our fans coming back for more, we need to continue to bring fresh ideas and new innovations to the table every time, while always staying true to what people fell in love with in the first place, ” says Activision CEO Eric Hirchberg. “That’s what we did with Call of Duty: Black Ops II, and that’s what we intend to keep on doing.
This is an incredible milestone for an incredible franchise, and I want to thank every passionate, talented, committed person on our team who made it happen."
Activision’s also quite keen to point out how much bigger an industry than film, with Bobby Kotick saying Call of Duty: Black Ops 2’s cumulative sales have eclipsed the current worldwide box office the top ten grossing films of 2012 – but that’s really little more than hollow PR and marketing. While it’s true that games make more money, comparing a R600 game with R40 movie tickets just isn’t cricket.
Still, one day the bottom will fall out and COD will slip through its own arse – but today is not that day. Personally, I’m pretty glad. I think Treyarch has at least tried to take Call of Duty in a new direction, whereas Modern Warfare 3 really did seem like a bit of a copy+paste job.