It’s the main headline for a reason and was the biggest focus from Activision’s recent earning’s call – being the massive layoffs across the company. It has been confirmed that eight hundred people are now without jobs, despite the company seeing record growth, with revenues up 6 per cent year-on-year and new executives having sizeable signing bonuses.
According to Activision COO Coddy Johnson, last year’s Call of Duty, sold well in its launch period, but failed to maintain that sales power throughout the next quarter.
Johnson had this to say about the matter: “Black Ops 4 sold through more units than Black Ops 3 in its launch quarter with PC units more than tripling and engagement was strong with average hours per player increasing versus Black Ops 3 as players enjoyed Blackout, Multiplayer and Zombies. We also saw a significant shift to digital this the year, with full game downloads representing over 40% of console sell-through versus approximately 30% for World War II.
However, sales of Black Ops 4 in the second half of the quarter were below our outlook, due to weaker-than-expected retail demand, lower-than-anticipated pricing and other promotional activities that didn’t meet expectations. Although Black Ops 4 in-game net bookings started off slower than expected following the introduction of the new in-game system, we were encouraged by the response we saw when we introduced more compelling content with the second season events in late Q4.”
As someone who owned Black Ops 4 for less than a week then sold it, I can see why other gamers have been put off, as it just doesn’t feel fun or grounded anymore, the title leans more towards ridiculous gameplay mechanics, and seemingly the player base are feeling the same way.
The game has been littered with community complaints – with many still complaining about various issues in the multiplayer such as like DLC maps not being in rotation, the general gameplay feel and the overall grind for items. This title also saw the inclusion of Blackout, an attempt to jump on the Battle Royale genre, that seemed like a desperate attempt to cash in.
Activision has recently suggested that this year’s Call of Duty will be received well with players, as it’s up to Infinity Ward again and that suggests that it’s likely that the game will be a new chapter in the Modern Warfare franchise. In this recent earning’s call, Activision hinted that the next Call of Duty will once again have a single player mode, but there was no solid details to confirm this.