Activision announced today that, according to Chart-Track retail customer sell-through data ant internal company estimates, Call of Duty: Black Ops II now has over $1 billion in retail sales worldwide. This number was reached just 15 days after the game’s release last month.
In a statement, Activision pointed out that last year’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 reached the $1 billion milestone in 16 days, and that it took the record-holding movie Avatar 17 days to reach that amount. Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard, also had an appropriately boastful statement to accompany the occasion.
“The release of Call of Duty has been one of the most significant entertainment events of each of the last six years,” said Kotick. “Since Call of Duty was launched, cumulative franchise revenues from players around the world are greater than current worldwide box office receipts to date for the top-10 grossing films of 2012 combined. Life-to-date sales for the Call of Duty franchise have exceeded worldwide theatrical box office receipts for ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Star Wars,’ the two most successful movie franchises of all time.”
Activision also revealed that over 150 million hours have been logged by gamers playing Black Ops II’s online multiplayer. The game may also have contributed to thousands of hours of lost productivity on its launch day.
Though the Call of Duty franchise has been criticized in recent years for glorifying war and for yearly updates that don’t differ much, it’s clear that demand for the series is only rising.
“Entertainment franchises that captivate audiences for as long as Call of Duty has, on the scale that Call of Duty has, are very rare things,” said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing. “In order for Call of Duty to remain the entertainment juggernaut that it is, and keep our fans coming back for more, we need to continue to bring fresh ideas and new innovations to the table every time, while always staying true to what people fell in love with in the first place. That’s what we did with Call of Duty: Black Ops II, and that’s what we intend to keep on doing.”