Activision Blizzard Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) has once again broken its own record for sales in the video game industry. Its latest installment in the wildly popular “Call of Duty” franchise, “Call of Duty: Black Ops 2,” generated $1 billion in sales for the Santa Monica, Calif.-based game publisher in just 15 days.
This clocks in “Black Ops 2” at the $1 billion mark a day ahead of its most recent predecessor, “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3,” which broke the previous entertainment industry record that was set by the film “Avatar” last year.
The $1 billion figure comes from retail sales worldwide in the 15 days following the game’s launch last month. The numbers are based on data provided by Chart-Track and internal estimates from Activision, which announced the sales Tuesday morning.
Previously, it was reported that “Black Ops 2” set another industry record for first day sales, when it made $500 million in sales in its first 24 hours on the shelf.
Despite breaking industry records in terms of the speed at which it generated $1 billion in sales, “Modern Warfare 3” ultimately sold slightly fewer copies than its immediate predecessor, 2010’s original “Call of Duty: Black Ops.” This gradual decline lead many critics to wonder if the world’s largest video game franchise was slowing down in its own commercial and cultural momentum or if the “Call of Duty” series had peaked entirely.
In the company’s statement, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg admitted that it had to reinvigorate the historic franchise for this year’s release.
"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,” Hirshberg said. “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,” Hirshberg added. “And I want to thank every passionate, talented, committed person on our team who made it happen."
Shares in Activision rose slightly in Wednesday morning trading, reaching $11.39 per share in late morning trading.