The newest “Call of Duty” is off to a faster start than many in the video game industry had thought -- and appears to have reached $1 billion in sales faster than any game in history.
“Call of Duty: Black Ops II” crossed more than $1 billion in retail sales by Nov. 27, its 15th day on sale, publisher Activision Blizzard Inc. announced Wednesday.
That’s a day faster than last year’s installment “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3" reached the same mark.
It also marks the first time Activision has announced sales figures for “Black Ops II” that exceed “Modern Warfare 3.”
When the Santa Monica game publisher announced first day sales on a worldwide basis, instead of for North America and Great Britain as it had previously done, many in the game industry assumed it did not have apples-to-apples data that showed the new game performing better.
Analyst Arvind Bhatia of Sterne Agee estimated that the new game would sell 10% to 15% less than “Modern Warfare 3.”
However, it appears that even if “Black Ops II” didn’t do better on its first day, it has picked up sales momentum a bit faster than its predecessor.
It remains to be seen, of course, whether gamers will keep up the pace. Analyst Evan Wilson at Pacific Crest Securities estimated that “Black Ops II” will sell 27.5 million units in the current fiscal quarter, up from 27 million for “Modern Warfare 3.”
It now seems certain, though, that “Call of Duty” remains the blockbuster franchise for Activision that it has been for most of the last decade.