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Is Call of Duty suffering from franchise fatigue?

2 min read


Every year, certain games release. Like clockwork, we know that we will get a FIFA, a new PES, and a new Call of Duty. Assassin’s Creed and Battlefield also used to be part of the annual cycle, but decided to sit out and try to hone the experience, something that has definitely worked well with Battlefield 1, and I hope means revived interest in Assassin’s Creed when they inevitably bring it back. But does Call of Duty need to take a break? Are people beginning to lose interest in the annual franchise?

On PC, it certainly seems that way, as explained by Alessandro this morning. But I’ve never really thought of CoD as a PC-gaming franchise – it’s all about playing on console, right? I mean, that’s why the championships are played on console and why all the best players seem to play it that way. But even console players don’t seem to be buying it as much as before.

Reported by GfK (thanks VG247), Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare has blasted to the top of the charts, as expected. However, it’s the small print that’s most interesting:

However, it’s not enough to outperform last year’s ‘Black Ops III’ launch week with sales down 48.4%. There is no Xbox 360 or PS3 version this time round, although even comparing just PS4 and Xbox One; sales are still down by 43.6%.

Sales are down by almost 50%? Even accounting for the platforms, sales are still down by over 43%? That’s quite something. Granted, these are just numbers from the UK, so they might not be indicative of how the game is performing around the world, but it’s certainly surprising for me. I thought if anything was certain in the world of gaming, it was that Call of Duty would always sell like hot cakes. Instead, sales are down.

Perhaps people are put off by the pricing issues. Or maybe Battlefield 1 and Titanfall 2 are scratching the FPS itch. Or maybe usual CoD fans are still too busy playing Overwatch and Destiny. It’s hard to tell if this is a downward trend for Call of Duty, or if perhaps people are just waiting to pick it up this year instead of buying it at launch. Of course, even with a 43% drop in sales, I’m sure the numbers are pretty staggering – when you’re making money by the billions of dollars, even losing that much money means you’re still making billions.

Have you picked it up already? Are you excited to play a new Call of Duty, or are you sticking with Blops 3 for now?

Last Updated: November 7, 2016


  1. HvR

    November 7, 2016 at 19:05

    Finally moms every can have a peaceful night’s rest again.


  2. For the Emperor!

    November 7, 2016 at 20:26

    Wait, they still make these? Lolz I know I know, but the last one that was fun for me was the first Modern Warfare!


    • Allykhat

      November 8, 2016 at 08:52

      Which, incidentally, has just been remastered 😀


  3. Guild

    November 7, 2016 at 20:50

    I enjoyed Black Ops 3 but when Overwatch arrived and I deleted. With the new releases I’ve gone with Titanfall 2. CoD doesn’t have the pull for me it used too


  4. Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

    November 8, 2016 at 07:41

    I’ve always written COD off as a copy past clone of itself, except they really tried something fresh this time round. I think poor sales are because of price, not releasing the remaster alone, adding MT to an already expensive game and segregating Steam and Windows Store users. But I’m sure Activision has enough put away for a rainy day. They’ll bounce back next year


  5. Andre Fourie

    November 8, 2016 at 08:06

    I think their ideas are just running out. And the ones they have are kak.


  6. Andre Fourie

    November 8, 2016 at 08:21

    Price, release date (when most salaries are a thing of the past) and I also think that in the past COD and BF were the big shooters. Now there are so many to choose from, and they are just getting better. Titanfall 2, Overwatch, the coming Ghost Recon: Wildlands (which I personally am gagging for) etc. New shooters are just getting better, while The COD franchise are not keeping up with the demand of better strategy, better ideas, better gameplay, expanding multiplayer from the mundane and mixing shit up a bit. They are still relying on a recipe that worked 10 years ago. Unfortunately, as time and gaming evolves that just wont cut it. There is just too much to choose from. Numbers will climb though, wait for December.


  7. Admiral Chief - N7

    November 8, 2016 at 08:36

    Yes, for the last 10 years


  8. HairyEwok

    November 8, 2016 at 09:04

    I think gaming in general is a bit fatigued. Too many games is being released on a yearly basis, so basically I’d prefer quality over quantity.


    • Andre Fourie

      November 8, 2016 at 09:11

      I agree. Too many coming out and they suck me in. I just want to buy buy buy and my wife just wants to kill kill kill.


    • Magoo

      November 8, 2016 at 09:25

      Yes. Like Rocket League. 😉


      • HairyEwok

        November 8, 2016 at 09:51

        Whats sad is that rocket league is out performing most AAA games being released now.


  9. Magoo

    November 8, 2016 at 09:23

    I have every Call of Duty game since CoD2. Every one except IW. Picked up a discounted BF1 instead, and being a long time BF4 player, I’m not sold on BF1. I want to buy into a new game, but between IW and TF2, I can’t afford shit. Had MW remastered been a standalone game I would have chosen it over BF1.

    I think people are just fed up with CoD for an increasing number of small reasons. Basically because the franchise has a clear agenda of “How can we make the most money with the least amount of effort.”


  10. Fox1 - Retro

    November 8, 2016 at 10:20

    Franchise fatigue is Assassin’s Creed and Need for Speed. Those were the 2 games I used to look forward to every December until Forza and Xbox launched in SA.


  11. 40 Insane Frogs

    November 8, 2016 at 13:30

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