Call of Duty Record Numbers Drive Activision Blizzard Growth

Call of Duty Record Numbers Drive Activision Blizzard Growth
  • Black Ops 3 hit 15 million users in June
  • Q2 record revenue of $1.64 billion
  • Black Ops 4 seeing strong pre-orders

The Call of Duty franchise delivered record numbers for its publisher Activision, parent company Activision Blizzard announced as part of its quarterly earnings call. Call of Duty: WWII and Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 were instrumental to that success, seeing increased user engagement. During June, Black Ops 3 hit over 15 million monthly active users in June, likely boosted by the fact that it was made free for PlayStation Plus users at E3 2018.

Pre-orders for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 are also strong, Activision president Collister Johnson said on a post-earnings call, and expects it to be the best-selling game in the autumn period.

Activision had a total of 45 million monthly active users, thanks to Black Ops 3, Destiny 2, and Call of Duty: WWII performing better than 2016's instalment Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. Blizzard, meanwhile, had 37 million monthly active users, with Overwatch being its biggest performer. As a whole, Activision Blizzard had 352 million monthly active users, with the rest coming from King, the maker of Candy Crush Saga.

Activision Blizzard's net revenue grew to $1.64 billion, a Q2 record it said, and up from $1.63 billion year-over-year. Despite that, the company forecast expectations for the ongoing quarter and the full year below expectations. In addition to Black Ops 4, upcoming releases include the expansions World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth and Destiny 2: Forsaken later in 2018.

“This was another strong quarter for Activision Blizzard. Our portfolio of global franchises enabled us to deliver record first half revenues and earnings per share,” said Bobby Kotick, Activision Blizzard CEO. Kotick also noted the company's esport efforts with the Overwatch League, which held its Grand Finals in New York in June. Activision Blizzard has sold two more Overwatch League franchises including Atlanta, Georgia and Guangzhou, China with plans for more.


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