The Call of Duty franchise is a renowned record breaker, selling millions of copies each year in a seemingly unstoppable way. However, things are looking a little different for the next Call of Duty title.
Activision themselves have admitted that the current pre-order figures for Call of Duty: Ghosts are lower than those of last year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops 2. Rather than attributing this to franchise fatigue, publisher Activision have put the blame on the transition from current-gen to next-gen consoles:
As one might expect in this console transition year, pre-orders for Call of Duty: Ghosts are well below the record-setting pace set by Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 last year … Our quantitative consumer research indicates that hesitation amongst past club pre-orders is primarily due to not knowing which platform they will be playing on, which is natural at this time in the console transition.
Activision are not alone in their blaming of the next-gen as a pre-order deterrent. EA had pointed out earlier that current-gen sports games pre-orders were suffering too, probably due to consumers holding off on their purchases.
This does make sense, and I highly doubt that Activision are that worried. While they did state that Call of Duty: Ghosts had low pre-orders, they also made it very clear that they are still very much the top dog for online gaming:
… Ghosts pre-orders are over double those of Call of Duty: Black Ops, which is the last time we launched a new sub-brand for the franchise. It’s also worth mentioning that our other key engagement metrics from the number of people playing per month to the number of people playing daily to DLC sales, to video views, to community engagement are all significantly ahead of past years.
Activision’s Call of Duty will face some tougher competition this year. With EA’s Battlefield 4 looking like a solid contender, and the awesome new IPs coming to next-gen consoles, it will be interesting to see just who comes out on top for 2013. It will probably still be Activision, but not without a few battle scars I reckon…
Former EA CEO John Riccitiello thinks that Battlefield 4 will be victorious. Read here about how he is confident that “EA’s got better cards.”
Source: MCV UK