All Articles: Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

Call of Duty: Black Ops III is the best-selling game of 2015; CoD franchise sells more than 250 million copies since 2003

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The numbers have been tabulated and the Call of Duty franchise once again reigns supreme over all other video games.

According to The NPD Group’s yearly report of retail releases, Call of Duty: Black Ops III was the best-selling game in 2015, besting EA’s Madden NFL 16 (#2) and Bethesda’s Fallout 4 (#3). The Call of Duty franchise also controlled the back end of the list with Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare taking the #10 spot. Activision’s Scott Lowe added (by way of the Activision Games Blog) that the entire franchise has sold more than 250 million copies since the release of Call of Duty in 2003.

Believe it or not, games outside the Call of Duty franchise found success in 2015 as well, though most of them were released after July 1st including Star Wars: Battlefront (#4), NBA 2K16 (#6), and FIFA 16 (#9). The only game to break that trend (aside from a few 2014 stragglers like Advanced Warfare) was Mortal Kombat X (#8), which was released in April. The game-playing public may not always like it, but this does explain why publishers constantly strive to release their games in the back half of the year.

On the hardware side, console sales surged in 2015, as the PS4 and Xbox One continued to outpace the PS3 and Xbox 360. The PS4 was the overall winner in 2015, but NPD analyst Liam Callahan told GamesIndustry.biz that both platforms did well: “After 26 months of sales, the combined cumulative sales of Xbox One and PS4 exceeds the 26 month total of the PS3 and Xbox 360 by 47 percent,”

The NPD’s list of the top ten best-selling games for 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)

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Activision will develop Call of Duty “cinematic universe” and Skylanders animated TV series

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Activision is going to Hollywood! The megapublisher has announced the formation of Activision Blizzard Studios, a new film and television studio that will create content based on their most popular game franchises. Nick Van Dyk, a former executive at Disney, will co-lead the studio along another executive who will be named later.

Not surprisingly, the first project from the studio will be an animated television series based on the Skylanders range of games and toys. A premiere date wasn’t announced, but the series is alreadyy in production and Activision has lined up an impressive voice cast including Justin Long as Spyro, Ashley Tisdale as Stealth Elf, Jonathan Banks as Eruptor, and Norm MacDonald as Glumshanks. Eric Rogers, a writer best known for his work on Futurama, will serve as the showrunner.

Activision Blizzard Studios is also hard at work on laying the groundwork for a Call of Duty “cinematic universe,” which they hope to launch with “a series of Call of Duty feature films as well as the possibility of television adaptations.” It takes guts to promise multiple movies, a television series, and an interconnected cinematic universe.

Bobby Kotick, Activision’s CEO, is confident that his new division can make it work: “Activision Blizzard is home to some of the most successful entertainment franchises in history, across any medium [and we] intend to approach film and television development with the same unwavering commitment to excellence we are known for in game development.”

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BOOM! Madden NFL 16 is the best-selling game of August 2015

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Whatever your opinion of Tom Brady and Deflategate (for the record, I agree with Tony Kornheiser, the suspension was “completely unjust”), it looks like nobody can take the air out of EA’s Madden NFL franchise. And don’t just take my word for it. The latest entry in the series, Madden NFL 16, topped the NPD Group’s newest monthly report and was declared the best-selling game of August 2015.

Madden NFL 16’s ascendance to the top of the list was a foregone conclusion, but August was an unusually quiet month for new releases. Just look at the three remakes/re-releases that broke into the top ten. Gears of War: Ultimate Edition chainsawed its way into the #3 spot, while the 30 games in the Rare Replay compilation collectively landed at #6. Finally, a Combo Pack containing Call of Duty: Black Ops + Call of Duty: Black Ops II claimed the #8 position (two spots ahead of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare at #10, I might add). The only other new release to crack the top ten was Sony’s Until Dawn at #7.

But the real story of the month might be that Minecraft continues to sell. Even though its been available on the PS4 and Xbox One since last year (and another year on the PS3 and Xbox 360), the game continues to sell month after month. Only Madden NFL 16 was able to outpace Mojang’s creation in August as Minecraft is sitting at #2 on the best-sellers list.

A complete look at August 2015’s top ten is available after the break. (more…)

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CoD: Advanced Warfare’s Reckoning Pack is now available on the PC, PS3, PS4

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare owners on the PC, PS3, and PS4 will finally get their chance to try out the game’s final downloadable expansion as the Reckoning Pack is now available on non-Xbox platforms. With the Reckoning Pack, Activision and Sledgehammer Games added four more competitive multiplayer maps to Advanced Warfare:

  • Overload: Enjoy the grand view of downtown New Baghdad from this exotic compound, complete with fountains, gardens and decorative plasma lamps. The map’s multiple levels and long perimeter site-lines highlight medium to long-range combat, and firing a shot at the lamps will send enemies flying in a burst of energy.
  • Quarantine: Following a deadly viral outbreak, the island has been converted into a biological testing center. This medium sized map’s tight corners dial up the speed and open areas combine to allow for any style of gameplay. Activate the map-based scorestreak to unleash a devastating ship-fired missile strike.
  • Fracture: Discover what secrets are locked in the ice in this arctic excavation site. Take refuge behind wind turbines and heavy equipment through large combat areas cradled on the shelf of a glacier. Stay alert as the timed event cracks the ice sheet, sending one lane sinking to the depths.
  • Swarm: Reconstruction is underway in Seoul, South Korea, congesting narrow corridors of this small to medium sized map with vehicles and equipment. Take position in war-scarred storefronts that provide plenty of cover over the streets or flank the enemy through close quarter interiors in the center of the map.

The Reckoning Pack also includes “Descent,” the final chapter in the Exo Zombies co-op campaign. John Malkovich’s Oz has risen from the dead to do battle with Bill Paxton, Bruce Campbell, Rose McGowan, and Jon Bernthal as they escape from the Atlas aircraft carrier.

This is the last time PlayStation players will be forced to wait for their Call of Duty add-ons. Beginning this Fall, PS4 and PS3 players will receive access to every downloadable expansion for Call of Duty: Black Ops III a month earlier than their Xbox counterparts.

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When Dinosaurs Ruled the Charts… Lego Jurassic World is best-selling game of July ’15

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July is not typically a very strong month for new game releases, and only a single new title was able to crack the NPD Group’s recounting of the ten best-selling games of the month. But it was Lego Jurassic World, a June release, that sits at the top of the sales food chain this month.

Debuting at #3 in the NPD’s June report, Lego Jurassic World likely got a boost from the tremendous box office support for the film. After nearly nine weeks in theaters, the film has earned more than $636 million. Only Titanic ($658 million) and Avatar ($760 million) have made more money at the domestic box office.

While it’s unlikely that Lego Jurassic World will reach those heights, the game is another hit for WB Games, which had yet another big month in July. Batman: Arkham Knight (#2) and Mortal Kombat X (#8) once again both landed in the top ten.

The only new release to break into the top ten last month was EA’s Rory McIlroy PGA Tour. Before McIlroy, Tiger Woods had been PGA Tour’s pitchman for more than 15 years. As great as Tiger used to be, it looks like EA doesn’t need him to sell their golf game.

Finally this month, GamesIndustry.biz is reporting that overall sales of all game-related items (hardware, software, and accessories) is roughly even with July 2014. Both July 2014 and July 2015 produced around $184 million in total sales.

The complete top ten for July 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)

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Final Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare DLC pack, Reckoning, will be available next week

Activision and Sledgehammer Games have announced the fourth and final downloadable expansion for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, the Reckoning Pack, will be available for the Xbox One and Xbox 360 on August 4.

I’m sure you know the drill by now. The Reckoning Pack will be available for free to everyone who has previously purchased the Season Pass. A standalone download will also be available for $14.99 through the Xbox Games Store. For their investment, players will receive access to four new multiplayer maps and the concluding chapter of the Exo Zombies co-op campaign:

  • Overload: Enjoy the grand view of downtown New Baghdad from this exotic compound, complete with fountains, gardens and decorative plasma lamps. The map’s multiple levels and long perimeter site-lines highlight medium to long-range combat, and firing a shot at the lamps will send enemies flying in a burst of energy.
  • Quarantine: Following a deadly viral outbreak, the island has been converted into a biological testing center. This medium sized map’s tight corners dial up the speed and open areas combine to allow for any style of gameplay. Activate the map-based scorestreak to unleash a devastating ship-fired missile strike.
  • Fracture: Discover what secrets are locked in the ice in this arctic excavation site. Take refuge behind wind turbines and heavy equipment through large combat areas cradled on the shelf of a glacier. Stay alert as the timed event cracks the ice sheet, sending one lane sinking to the depths.
  • Swarm: Reconstruction is underway in Seoul, South Korea, congesting narrow corridors of this small to medium sized map with vehicles and equipment. Take position in war-scarred storefronts that provide plenty of cover over the streets or flank the enemy through close quarter interiors in the center of the map.

And in the final episode of Exo Zombies, “Descent,” John Malkovich’s Oz will rise from the dead to do battle with Bill Paxton, Bruce Campbell, Rose McGowan, and Jon Bernthal during their escape from the Atlas aircraft carrier.

PC, PS3, and PS4 players will likely be able to get their hands on the Reckoning Pack in early September.

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Mortal Kombat X was the best-selling game in the first half of 2015

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Fortune has scoured the last six months of data from The NPD Group to assemble a definitive list of the best-selling games from the first half of the year.

Surprisingly, or perhaps unsurprisingly when you realize just how few games have been released this year, NetheRealm’s Mortal Kombat X took the top spot. The latest game in the long-running series paved the way for WB Games’s complete domination of the sales chart. The publisher secured four spots in the half-year top ten including Batman: Arkham Knight (#6), Dying Light (#7), and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (#9). Arkham Knight’s appearance on the list is even more impressive as it was released in the last week of June.

Among the holdovers, Grand Theft Auto V (#2), Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (#4), and Minecraft (#5) all broke into the top five. It’s likely that all three will stick around for the year-end list as well.

The complete top ten list can be found right here:

Bestselling Games in the First Half of 2015
1. Mortal Kombat X
2. Grand Theft Auto V
3. Battlefield Hardline
4. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
5. Minecraft
6. Batman: Arkham Knight
7. Dying Light
8. NBA 2K15
9. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
10. Super Smash Bros. For 3DS / Super Smash Bros. For Wii U

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Batman: Arkham Knight stands watch atop the best-selling games list for June 2015

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Rocksteady’s Arkham trilogy went out with a bang last month, and it looks like a lot of fans went along for the ride, as The NPD Group has confirmed Batman: Arkham Knight was the best-selling game for June 2015.

Aside from the problems with the PC version, WB Games had a pretty good month as four of the publisher’s titles placed in the top ten. Newcomer Lego Jurassic World joined Arkham Knight near the top of the list in the #3 spot, while The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (#4) and Mortal Kombat X (#8) held over from May. NPD’s Liam Callahan told GamesIndustry.biz, “Warner Bros. Interactive is the top corporate publisher so far in 2015, with dollar sales growing 217% versus the first half of 2014.”

But WB Games wasn’t the only company having a nice Summer as Bethesda has a hit on their hands with The Elder Scrolls Online. It was also a good month to be a squid as Nintendo’s Splatoon held strong at #5, and became the only platform exclusive to crack the top ten.

The industry as a whole should be very happy about last month’s sales as consumers spent a lot more than they did last year. Overall sales were up 18%, $869 million versus $734 million, over June 2014. And that includes increases in hardware (+8%), software (+21%), and accessories (+34%).

The complete top ten list of best-selling games for June 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)

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