Who would have thought Call of Duty Black Ops 2 would not only be more successful than Halo 4, but that it would also hit a billion dollars in sales in fifteen days?
Then again, considering CoD did $500 million in business its first day, it shouldn’t be that much of a surprise. Nevertheless, crossing the billion mark in this short of time is big deal for any product or service, especially if it is a video game.
At first the Call of Duty franchise was a little behind the last installment, Modern Warfare 3. But as Variety tells us, Black Ops hit the billion milestone a day ahead of Modern Warfare, which racked up a billion in 16 days. Meaning, it’s both a record for the franchise and the gaming business. (Comparing gaming to movies, Avatar made a billion in 17 days).
Call of Duty Black Ops 2 also clocked in over 150 million hours on Xbox Live and PlayStation Networks. As Bobby Kotick, the CEO of Activision proudly told Variety, "The release of Call of Duty has been one of the most significant entertainment events of each of the last six years." He also bragged that, "Life-to-date sales for the Call of Duty franchise have exceeded worldwide theatrical box office receipts for Harry Potter and Star Wars."
At the same time, according to USA Today, the gaming industry is still in a major slump, even with this kind of success. As the publication notes "Analysts expect a drop in video-game sales from November 2011, when market researcher the NPD Group releases its November 2012 repot. Console game sales have declined as fewer hit games have been released and the popping of a ‘bubble’ created by an influx of casual gamers who bought Nintendo Wiis."
Actually, you can't help but have the feeling that the gaming industry won't totally turn around by the end of the year, even with the success of Halo 4 and Call of Duty. One or two enormous hits can’t transform an entire industry vernight, although it sure helps a lot. Of course, you can also look at this as a promising way to go into 2013, where other big gaming events are right around the corner. Grand Theft Auto V anyone?