Call Of Duty earns $780m in 3 days
THE latest Call Of Duty video game boasted an opening weekend that blew away any other game, film, book or music debut this year, said the company behind it on Wednesday.
Call Of Duty: Black Ops III racked up more than US$550 million (S$780 million) in sales in the three days after its release on Nov 6, according to California-based Activision Publishing, a subsidiary of Activision Blizzard.
"Call Of Duty's millions of passionate fans have shown us, yet again, the strength of their commitment to this enduring franchise," said Activision Blizzard chief executive Bobby Kotick.
It was "the biggest entertainment launch this year in any medium, and bigger than any theatrical opening weekend ever", he added.
Fans played the game online for more than 75 million hours, setting a new record for the blockbuster franchise.
Black Ops III is the 12th game in the series, which is testimony to its longevity and ability to reinvent itself, all the while earning it a loyal following of tens of millions of fans.
"Our fans are engaging more deeply with the franchise than ever before," said Activision Publishing chief executive Eric Hirshberg.
"Call Of Duty is more than a game - it's a year round passion for a growing base of millions of fans and it's only gaining momentum."
For Activision Blizzard, the latest revamp of its gaming megahit aimed to revive stagnating sales and came hot on the heels of an announcement that it is buying the maker of the addictive Candy Crush Saga, King Digital Entertainment, for US$5.9 billion - tapping into a market of half a billion gamers worldwide.
This time, the action in Black Ops III is set in the year 2065. Climate change has spawned fierce competition over scarce resources. Highly effective anti-aircraft systems mean fighting is on the ground and often in covert or "black" operations.
While the latest incarnation harks back to recent episodes, notably with shades of last year's Advanced Warfare, it is a far cry from its debut based on World War II action. Advances in consoles mean that for the first time the Campaign - the main narrative of the game - can be played with friends. It also features women soldiers.
As usual the game offers over-the-Internet multiplayer battles as well, not to mention Zombies mode as gamers look to survive attacks from hordes of the living dead.