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Modern Warfare 2 Call of Duty franchise's best launch yet

Activision Blizzard said its Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 generated $800 million in sell-through within the first three days of its launch

An employee tests a version of Call of Duty on Friday, Oct. 21, 2022, at Activision Blizzard, Infinity Ward Division, in Woodland Hills, Calif. Call of Duty has been one of the best-selling video games for the past decade-plus, and is at the heart of the developing antitrust fight over whether Microsoft will be able to acquire Activision Blizzard. (AP Photo/Allison Dinner) (AP)

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(Bloomberg) -- Activision Blizzard Inc. said its Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II generated $800 million in sell-through within the first three days of its launch, helping the franchise recover from last year’s flop.

The video game, developed by Activision studio Infinity Ward and released on Oct. 28th, had the highest-earning opening weekend of a Call of Duty game, the publisher said in a statement on Tuesday.

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Call of Duty, a first-person shooter, is Activision’s most popular franchise. The games regularly top yearly sales charts and have sold more than 400 million units since the series began in 2003. But last year’s edition, Call of Duty: Vanguard, struggled with negative reviews and competition from new Halo and Battlefield entries, stifling Activision’s fiscal performance.

The franchise’s next installment in a free-to-play mobile version, Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0, will be released on Nov. 16th, Activision said. The Warzone series is a massive success and may have drawn players away from the premium entries. Bloomberg reported in February that the Santa Monica, California-based publisher will skip a Call of Duty release next year, the first time the series won’t have an annual release in two decades, as the company plans to space out releases more.

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Microsoft Corp. is in the process of purchasing Activision for $69 billion, and Call of Duty is being scrutinized by antitrust regulators who are concerned that Microsoft may make the game exclusive to its Xbox console, cutting it off from rival Sony Group Corp.’s PlayStation.

According to the Call of Duty website, Modern Warfare II features new gameplay innovations and puts players into a global conflict which features the return of the iconic Task Force 141. The game also features all-new gun handling, advanced AI and immersive multiplayer combat. The game is available on Xbox, PlayStation, and the Steam platform.

More stories like this are available on bloomberg.com

©2022 Bloomberg L.P.

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