Activision Blizzard’s financial report details a very successful 2019

Activision

Every so often, something magical happens in the video game industry. Large publishers like Activision have to submit financial reports to their shareholders detailing how successful the year was. This matters because it’s usually the only time these AAA publishers are actually honest.

So, when I opened up Activision Blizzard’s report I was ready for some juicy information, but they didn’t have much to hide. The truth is Activision has had a great year and their latest financial report proves that.

Activision’s Financial Report

candy crush saga

The primary focus of the report was firmly placed on Modern Warfare. Whilst it’s likely Activision was confident it would do well; its numbers are seriously impressive. PC sales alone increased by 50% in comparison to Black Ops 4. Equally, Modern Warfare’s overall sales increased by a “double-digit percentage,” when compared to its predecessor. 

Meanwhile, Call of Duty Mobile managed to stack up 150 million installs worldwide. This helped it top download charts in over 150 countries and finish top 15 in grossing mobile titles. Speaking of Mobile, Activision’s acquisition of KING back in November 2015 has continued to pay dividends. As usual, Candy Crush Saga was the top-grossing title across all U.S app stores.

Blizzard’s Financial Report

world of warcraft

However, the Blizzard half of Activision-Blizzard had less to celebrate given their various PR mistakes. Regardless, there’s no doubting that the launch of World of Warcraft Classic did a great job of resurrecting a once declining MMORPG. Blizzard claims WoW’s player base over doubled thanks to the release of Classic.

Outside of WoW, the report touches upon Overwatch’s expansion to Switch and the latest Hearthstone expansion. Unfortunately for Blizzard, their newest release, Warcraft 3: Reforged, has gone down as yet another PR disaster. Perhaps if they hadn’t claimed all user content in the first place, this wouldn’t have happened.

If you want to read through the various financial details, be sure to check out the report yourself. There are listings for revenue, profits, taxation, and just about anything else an Activision shareholder would need to know.

Platinum’s TMNT Project Leaked, Activision Releases HD Trailer

The first ever trailer for PlatinumGames’ upcoming TMNT game titled Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan, has been leaked ahead of schedule.

While there is very little combat, it is nice to see the look they’re going for and how the game is shaping up from the conceptual stages.

Here is the full trailer in HD, courtesy of Activision.

 

While I can’t truthfully say that I am a big fan of anything TMNT related, it is nice to know that the game seems to be achieving a genuine comic book aesthetic, rather than some bizarre Michael Bay deformity.

Furthermore, it’s reassuring to know that TMNT is in the hands of the talented people at PlatinumGames, who have a nearly flawless record of developing fun and frenetic action games. Even if they seem to have about ten thousand projects on the go at once.

I am certain we will be seeing much more on TMNT in the coming months, so definitely stay tuned for whatever is next.

Activision-Blizzard Acquires King

Activision-Blizzard and King Digital Entertainment have released a joint statement announcing that Activision-Blizzard has acquired the mobile development company.  King is most famous for Candy Crush Saga and has released numerous successful mobile titles under the free-to-play business model.  Activision-Blizzard acquired the company at $18 per share for a total of $5.9 billion.  It doesn’t appear that any major changes will take place at King following the acquisition as the statement makes clear that King will still operate independently and that Chief Executive Officer Riccardo Zacconi, Chief Creative Officer Sebastian Knutsson, and Chief Operating Officer Stephane Kurgan will retain their positions within King as prior.  Along with profiting from the emerging mobile market in general, a major motivation for the acquisition appears to be bringing Activision and Blizzard’s IP’s to mobile as the statement puts a fair deal of emphasis on franchises owned by the companies.  You can read the full joint statement here.

While Activision and Blizzard are major names among core gamers, King is far from revered with the same crowd.  Along with the general bias often held against mobile games, King stirred up controversy last year when it filed lawsuits against smaller studios using the words ‘candy’ or ‘saga’ in their titles, including a “Notice of Opposition” against Stoic for their viking-based strategy-RPG The Banner Saga.  It seems unlikely that fans of Call of Duty, Diablo, or the like would be too excited about any mobile spin-offs with King’s name on them.

What are your thoughts on Activision, Blizzard, and King joining forces?  Are there any franchises you would like to see or dread seeing worked on by King?  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

The Taken King Launches Without A Raid

I generally try to avoid talking about the year long, sixty dollar beta, Destiny, but this is just too rich to avoid. According to The Taken King Director Luke Smith, the new Raid titled ‘Kings Fall’ will not be available on the day of launch.

Really Bungie…?

What’s more, Luke didn’t even comment on a potential release window for the raid, which is considered one of the most important pieces of content for Destiny’s end game. What a sad state of affairs for both Activision and Bungie.

Despite all of this, he has offered a final statement on the matter and it is as disappointing as one might expect.

“But I promise for people who are excited about the raid will know when it’s time to take time off work. We’ll give em’ a heads up”

How kind of Bungie to let us know when it comes out after hiding this fact until mere weeks before The Taken King releases. It’s not as if anyone wanted to play the Raid after Disappointment of Wolves released without a raid, instead opting for the utterly horrible “Prison of Elders”.

The Taken King was supposed to be the reinvention of Destiny. It was supposed to show everybody that Destiny can and will be a great game. While this may still happen, shipping without a vital piece of content just shows that even an entire year after launching, Bungie still can’t get their s%!t together.

Side-scroller Snoopy’s Grand Adventure Release Date Announced

Activision has recently announced a Snoopy game based on The Peanuts Movie called The Peanuts Movie: Snoopy’s Grand Adventure and they have announced its release date. Snoopy’s Grand Adventure is coming to PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U and Nintendo 3DS on November 6. Weirdly enough, the game won’t be featured on the PS3.

The Peanuts Movie: Snoopy’s Grand Adventure is developed by Behaviour Interactive and published by Activision. The game’s description reads:

“In The Peanuts Movie: Snoopy’s Grand Adventure, Snoopy explores the fantastical worlds of his imagination to track down Charlie Brown and his friends in an intricate game of hide-and-seek. As he follows their trails, Snoopy will acquire new costumes (based on his many alter egos) that provide unique abilities for overcoming obstacles and reaching new levels, including flight stages that let him take off as the Flying Ace. From the jungle to Paris to the moon itself, each environment is painted gorgeously in the same visual style as The Peanuts Movie to bring to life every colorful detail of Snoopy’s wild daydreams.”

They also released a trailer of the game and there is some special costumes that grant the beloved character, Snoopy, with the ability to fly while others just make him look good.

The Peanuts Movie: Snoopy’s Grand Adventure is launching on PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U and Nintendo 3DS on November 6. ( Credit: Videogamer )

Microsoft Lose Exclusivity Rights For Call of Duty

Call of Duty

Call of Duty

For a long time that all of the DLCs that came to Call of Duty were first launched on the Xbox platform, but all this changed in this year’s E3, when Sony announced that Call of Duty’s expansions would be coming first in their platform, the Playstation.

But it isn’t just the DLC that will be first released for the PlayStation, as you may also expect Call of Duty Black ops 3’s Multiplayer Beta to be first launched for the Sony’s Playstation 4.

Adam Boyle, Sony’s P/R VP, was recently interviewed by Gamespot, where he stated:

“Well, I think the first thing was we’ve had a great relationship with Activision around Destiny, […] we fell in love with [Black Ops 3] instantly… As soon as I started playing it, I said, ‘This feels incredible! You can wallride!’ It’s just so smooth; it’s almost like poetic. And so obviously, we just continued talking with our partners at Activision and worked something out. And now we’ve got I think a great benefit to all the gamers.

So there you have it folks, whether it was because Sony decided to pay some extra funds to Activision, so that they could start selling this AAA game before their primal rival, or simply because Microsoft lacked the patience to deal with Activision again, at least now you know what Sony has to say about it.

What do you think about this news. Are you happy? Please give your opinion in the comments box below.

And don’t forget, for more on Call of Duty  and Sony related, stay tuned to VGamerZ.

PS’s European Chief: “We’re working really well with Activision”

European Chief

European Chief

VG 24/7  recently conducted an interview with PlayStation’s European chief Jim Ryan and a question about their new acquirement of earlier access for Call of Duty‘s DLC was asked. It was stated that this move was of a huge significance for them during E3. So Jim Ryan clarified this statement and said that it was both significant in terms of revenue and in terms of what the gamers want. Acquiring this deal from Activision, which has been in partnership with Microsoft for the Call of Duty franchise for almost 8 years now wasn’t an easy thing to do but Sony’s involvement with them while working on Destiny, made it a bit easier to agree on terms.

“I think probably both. You can’t have the latter without the former in the long run. We’re working really well with Activision. We have a great partnership on Destiny, and that continues.” Jim said. “We’re not stopping with that. Call of Duty will obviously be available on a number of platforms, but having the partnership and the benefits that it offers to PlayStation gamers is something we’re very happy to be able to offer, particularly in the UK, where last time round we struggled. We’re doing massively better now, but this will help us build on that.

Call of Duty Black Ops III will release on November 6, 2015 on PC, PS4, PS3, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.

Tell us what you think about earlier access to DLCs and if this really matters to you.

Content Stigmatisation: The Bane of Gaming

Gaming

I love content me. There is nothing better than completing a game only to find tens of hours of additional game ready to play that is not directly linked to the “main game”. Extra modes, unlockables, challenges, and characters; they all add the experience. Whilst not a sure-fire, set in stone rule, the more content a game has, the better the value. Well isn’t it a shame that content in modern games is, well, missing. Ergo, the value of gaming has dropped.

But why has game content went the way of the dodo? Simple: DLC. It seems more and more common for developers to release a game with blatantly missing content only to “fill in the gaps” later with overpriced, underwhelming DLC packages. Last years Destiny is a shining example of how a game was neutered and then spoon fed with addons at a later date. You have a game ripe with potential, the only draw back being there is nothing to do, the main story is short and actually goes out of its way to not explain the universe, and low and behold, ridiculous DLC comes along to fill in all those gaps at an extravagant price. Buy a half finished game at full price, then pay more for the right to play the other half later on.

This kind of thinking is ripe in the gaming industry of today, and with day one DLC actually having the audacity to exist (we are looking at you Capcom), especially when the content is already on the disk (still looking at you Capcom), the problem is not going away. And whilst we are staring uncomfortably at Capcom, what is with Street Fighter 4 Super Hyper Turbo Champion Extreme Edition Plus Arcade? Everything you have added to Steet Fighter over the years could, and should be added as DLC, and in some cases, a patch.

Microtransactions. Oh how I despise you. Once only found in terrible F2P mobile games, microtransactions have begun to crop up in AAA titles. Traditionally microtransactions are designed to allow you to skip tedious parts of a game, which is great in a F2P title that has freakishly long downtime. But when you had this kind of rubbish in full price games like Forza or Assassins Creed, you are literally paying the developer money to:

  1. Play their game
  2. Play any on disk day one DLC
  3.  Not play the game

And this trend will not stop, because people do it. Developers are literally asking you for money to not play their game, after you spent a small fortune buying the game in the first place.

Content in gaming nowadays is a taboo. If you want to have a meaningful, full experience you simply have to fork out additional money for features that should have been present all along. That, or wait a year or so for the Directors Cut, otherwise known as: The actual game we should have released a year ago.

Call Of Duty: Advanced Warfare Multiplayer Reveal Trailer Looks Exhilarating

Call Of Duty

Activision has revealed the multiplayer aspect of Call Of Duty: Advanced Warfare in prep for Gamescom, and does it ever look like frenetic fun. With a new engine, added mobility, and the idea of reinvigorating a dying franchise, Advanced Warfare seeks to seduce newcomers and long-time fans alike.

This new trailer demonstrates every reason you should be hyped up for multiplayer once again, especially after Ghosts, which was a let-down in every regard.

I, despite having a vendetta against yearly released franchises that do little to improve the formulae, love Call Of Duty. Games like Modern Warfare and Black Ops were loads of fun to play, with re-playability that kept the game fresh for months. Ghosts came out as a disappointment to most, and it seemed that the infamous IP was finally losing its audience. That is, until Advanced Warfare was shown off.

The game is set to on next-gen and current-gen platforms on the 4th of November, and I cannot wait to sink my teeth in.

Destiny PS4 Alpha Gameplay Leaked

Destiny

UPDATE: The files are no longer available for download, we have removed the links as they point to nowhere now.

ORIGINAL STORY FOLLOWS:

Over the last day or so, Destiny first real gameplay footage on the PS4 has been leaked all over the internet. Activision has been swiftly removing every trace of the videos, making it impossible to see what all the hype is about. Luckily enough, there remains a download that still works, so get it while it is hot as this will probably not last very long.

Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5

I for one think this looks excellent. It’s reminiscent of Borderlands and Halo, and that is never a bad thing. If Bungie can deliver on their promises and negate my worries, this game could turn out to be an E3 show-stopper. The wait is almost over, so this can distract you until the big show!

Source: wccftech