Black Ops to sell over 10m units in US

Latest Call of Duty generating interest for Activision, but Blur sales hit by "ill-timed" launch

Although not due for release until November 9, Activision and Treyarch's Call of Duty: Black Ops is generating enough interest to sell over 10.7 million units in its first year on sale in the US, according to Cowan & Company.

The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 game is already in the top ten pre-order charts at and, with analyst Doug Creutz suggesting that the high-profile departure of talent from Activision hasn't harmed the Call of Duty brand.

"This is a very impressive display of strength and we believe the title is headed for a better comparison versus last year’s Modern Warfare 2 than we had originally assumed," said Creutz. "We are increasing our estimate for the franchise from a -29 per cent year on year unit decline to a -17 per cent year on year decline.

"We believe our revised estimate could still prove conservative, and note that a strong performance by the Treyarch-developed Black Ops would help combat the notion that the departure of key Infinity Ward talent could permanently impair the Call of Duty franchise."

It's not all good news for Activision, however, with the Cowan & Company underwhelmed by the success of the recently released racer from Bizarre Creations, Blur.

"Based on extremely weak initial checks, we now expect Blur to sell less than 1 million units worldwide in its first year," said Creutz. "Although the title achieved a decent 82 Metacritic rating, its launch one week after Disney’s entrant in the racing genre, Split/Second, appears exceptionally ill-timed."

More stories

Auto-aim cheat tool shuts down at Activision request

User Vision makers said their "intent was never to do anything illegal"

By Marie Dealessandri

Activision takes Call of Duty Warzone trademark fight to court

After 2017 browser game objects to trademark filings, publisher asks a judge to determine rights

By Brendan Sinclair

Latest comments (3)

Terence Gage Freelance writer 11 years ago
The timing for Blur hasn't been great which no doubt will have affected its sales, but much if not most of the blame has to fall at the feet of Activision - considering this is the first game from their (relatively) new in-house racing specialist studio, the marketing for it has been absolutely pathetic. If they gave it even quarter of the effort that goes into your average Call of Duty game, and pushed it based on the studio's heritage (specifically the excellent PGR series), I think Blur could have been a pretty decent seller.

As it stands, I've seen almost no marketing for Blur, and Split/Second seems to have far more buzz and anticipation surrounding it.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Pierre Vandenbroucke Assistant de production, Gorgone Productions11 years ago
I'm not that sure it will be terrible for Blur sales. I think being the first one to be released was more difficult.

People knowing a similar game is to be released 1 week afterwards would probably wait for the reviews of the second one before they choose any of the 2 games.

If Activision is confident with the quality of their title, they shouldn't be too worried.
It is obvious some people will buy one but not the other, while delayed dates might have allowed people to buy both. But it should be okay. The beta was a great marketing tool in my opinion.

(edit: spelling)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Pierre Vandenbroucke on 28th May 2010 2:47pm

0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Shaun Mulvey Marketing Manager, Powerplay Direct11 years ago
I totally agree with TGs' statement. From a marketing perspective Disney have been offering money left, right and centre to promote Split Second. BETA code (for Blur) will do it for the hardcore gamers but for the casual gamer (or their extended buying network:parents,partners,friends etc) awareness is key. Regardless of which is the better game visibility will win the non hardcore penny. Is this another case of Super Publisher arrogance?
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.