During Activision’s financial conference call for investor and analysts, Chief Operating Officer Coddy Johnson gave some color about the upcoming Call of Duty Black Ops 4 and its Battle Royale mode titled Blackout.
“We have strong expectations for the game. We feel good about the development underway, we feel great about the community interest and fan response.”
Johnson mentioned that the game builds on the trend of offering deep and appealing ongoing engagement to fans that the series is known for. The reveal events were highly watched and really well received, and they’re building momentum. Activision is also seeing a surge of excitement in anticipation of tomorrow’s beta.
“We’ve also seen a tremendous interest in the new Blackout mode. We teased earlier this week and we saw overwhelmingly positive response to the trailer we put out. I think the fans are really hungry for it. And we see it also on the playtest that we’re doing, both with our own teams and the confidential tests that we bring consumers through. There is this moment-to-moment creation that happens now. Many Call of Duty games in the past were scripted, but in this the players are generating the wild helicopter rides, the takedowns from ATVs and truck beds, the powers and abilities that you find as you move through the map… It’s putting in the hands of the fans this massive experience.”
He then mentioned that the content will be fun to play for hours, weeks, and years on end. Activision is fired up for October’s launch and they think this is one of the best installments of Call of Duty that they made to date.
Chief Financial Officer Spencer Neumann was then asked to ask about the risk and potentials coming from the competition in the crowded holiday season. He mentioned that this question comes up often as it seems that every year there is strong competition in gaming. This year may be a bit more crowded than others, but Activision is used to the competition and they “really like the hand they’re dealt.”
According to Neumann, the primary factor driving Activision’s games’ success is its own game’s quality and the un and innovation they bring to the experience. They have some of the best talents in the industry and they make great games that people want to play regardless of what’s happening.
They think they’re “extremely well positioned” across their portfolio to drive growth. They’re “confident in their great franchises going into the Holiday season.”
Speaking about Battle Royale, Spencer was also asked to ask about the impact of Fortnite. He mentioned that Activision managed to achieve strong financial results against the backdrop of very strong consumer interest in battle royale games. That continues to be the case. The company is seeing some impact on some franchises primarily on engagement, with users that seem to be splitting their time between Activision’s games and trying something new. With that said, battle royale games are highly incremental to the industry bringing in new players and engagement. It’s making gaming more mainstream. Innovation and fresh content draws in players and expands the gaming community.
Activision “remains laser-focused on driving innovation” within its own franchises and content, bringing excitement to existing and new players, and fostering engagement over long periods of time.
If you want to read more about Activision’s financial results in the latest quarter, you can check out our dedicated article.
If you’d like to pre-order Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 you can do so on Amazon. The game will release on October 12th, 2018 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC.