Call Of Duty: Infinite Warfare‘s performance at retail may force Activision to change the way it makes and markets the franchise.
That’s because the title represents perhaps the largest drop in player numbers and sales in franchise history, despite last year’s Black Ops 3 igniting what seemed like a mini resurgence.
Physical sales of the game throughout November — the franchise’s traditional launch month — have it moving half of what Black Ops 3 did during the same period in 2015.
That’s a brutal insight into a franchise that is working to reestablish itself as gaming’s premiere shooter.
The sales come by way of the NPD Group’s monthly report, which was shared with investors yesterday.
Cowen analyst Doug Creutz told CNBC that Infinite Warfare unit sales were 17 percent below expectations, and that in total it was down close to 50 percent, year-on-year.
That figure is related to North American physical sales, but it’s a similar figure in the UK, another important battleground for the AAA game.
Interestingly, digital sales were said to be up year-on-year, however it’s unknown at this point how — if at all — this increase offsets the significant drop in physical sales.
Publisher Activision will also be able to offset any drop in sales by a rise in special edition sales, thanks to the inclusion of Modern Warfare Remastered, which was only included in the pricier versions of the game.
The game’s performance on PC must also be raising red flags for Activision, despite not being considered a Call Of Duty battleground due to the franchise’s console focus.
A report on Githyp reveals player numbers on Steam are down a staggering 76% when compared to the same launch window period for Black Ops 3.