Activision: Destiny has potential to be billion-dollar series

Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg says Bungie's new game to join Skylanders and Call of Duty in billion-dollar category; Call of Duty: Ghosts preorders "well below" Black Ops II.

Bungie Studios' first post-Halo project--shared-world shooter Destiny--has the potential to become Activision Publishing's latest billion-dollar series, according to CEO Eric Hirshberg.

Speaking today during an earnings call, Hirshberg said Destiny is on pace to set the all-time preorder record for a new franchise--at Activision and across the industry. And based on the company's internal estimates, the game is set to become Activision Publishing's third active billion-dollar franchise, joining Call of Duty and Skylanders.

Destiny launches in 2014 for current- and next-generation consoles.

Also during the call, Hirshberg spoke about preorder figures for Call of Duty: Ghosts, saying they are "well below" the record-setting Call of Duty: Black Ops II. The executive attributed this downturn to consumer uncertainty regarding next-generation platforms.

"However, our quantitative consumer research indicates that hesitation amongst past [Call of Duty] preorderers is primarily due to not knowing which platform they will be playing on, which is natural at this time in the console transition," Hirshberg said.

He pointed out that Call of Duty: Ghosts preorders are double those of the original Call of Duty: Black Ops, which was the last time Activision launched a Call of Duty sub-brand. In addition, he said other "key engagement metrics," like the number of monthly and daily Call of Duty players, as well as downloadable content sales and video views are "significantly" ahead of past years.

What's more, Hirshberg said Activision will support Call of Duty: Ghosts with the most aggressive marketing plan in the history of the Call of Duty franchise.

Call of Duty: Ghosts launches November 5 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, and PC. Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions are also in development.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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200 comments
SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

Perhaps the consumer uncertainty revolves around Call of Duty: Ghosts and not the next-gen platforms.

carnivalshow
carnivalshow

I already have this game on pre order and i dont even have an ps4 pre ordered yet lol

tightwad34
tightwad34

Activision and greed just go hand in hand.

pvspartan36
pvspartan36

I think we all know the plan here. Obtaining the publishing deal for Destiny was a very obvious and safe move, but more importantly for Activision, it's the contingency plan. If Call of Duty sales die down, Destiny will be moved in to take its place. 

Granted, I don't want Call of Duty to die. I enjoy them, as long as I take a game or two off before I get the next installment. They may not be revolutionary, but I'll be damned if they're not still fun.

Hurvl
Hurvl

Oh, so CoD: Ghost preorders are well below CoD: Blops 2 but twice as many as CoD: Blops 1. Hmmm, that gives us an interesting estimation of the actual preorder numbers as of now (which, of course, they're not revealing). 

As far as Bungies new game is concerned, Activision is all like: Join CoD and Skylanders and become a billion dollar series - it is your Destiny.

genjuroT
genjuroT

I'm only curious to know how they will sell it every following year for $60. They said series.

ishsgames
ishsgames

Does Bungie really have a choice of which* platforms their title may be divided too or does the communist pub Activision forcibly make them do so Oo. Many of you should perhaps look into this. I feel like Bungie would really like to develop it only for the Xone, ps4 and PC since thats where most of the hardcore gamers will be at.

RedLegZeff
RedLegZeff

Skylanders is a billiion dollar franchise? Seriously? SERIOUSLY??? The crappy toy game? I weep for our future.

DESTROYRS_F8
DESTROYRS_F8

great, first tony hawk and guitar hero, then CoD, next is this game codenamed "Halo". 

Fighting40
Fighting40

Always about the money ain't it?

riclyrex
riclyrex

well that basically means were gonna sequels every year then

blackothh
blackothh

I would love for this to de-throne call of duty but it would have to severely dumb down its gameplay to attract any of its cult members.

diabolik_023
diabolik_023

well...... FUCK YOU TOO Bungie !!! another 10 years will come and you will still fuck PC players in the ass.... so FUCK YOU TOO !

themc_7
themc_7

I'm really looking forward to this. A series like this needs to be handled delicately, don't go all Call of Duty and milk the franchise until it's no good. I suppose though that's how the industry works, create an idea, if people like it...SELL SELL SELL! Until people hate it, then you come up with a new idea. 

Side note: How the hell is Skylanders a billion dollar franchise? 

Zatto-1
Zatto-1

Destiny has potential to be billion-dollar series.

I didnt expect anything else. Thats (un)Activision for ya in a nutshell, might just as well change the name to BDS.

Hal3x
Hal3x

I was actually excited for Destiny.....but not anymore. It's just going to be milked franchise. At first Destiny will do good and people will like it. Don't judge before you play it. But after it's first 4 games and some kids sreaming in your ear in Multiplayer Pretty sure it will fail sooner or later....hmph maybe not even the first 4 games probably the first 3. 

Karpola
Karpola

$_$ I'm sorry, I can't see you over the dollars in my eyes.

Onallion
Onallion

I'd love to join them in the fantasy world. It seems everyone there is convinced that there's even a slight chance Destiny will be anything other than a flop!

Oh, what tomfoolery!

Zoza24
Zoza24

Yeah right Activision all you see is the money, but not the game..

Kr3isen
Kr3isen

Mark my words, the game will sell like 3 to 4mil copies then a month or so down the road theyll come out with a statement how it underperformed. Then a year later the studio will be either closed down or turned into yet another ''Activision COD machine'' with the founders leaving (or should i say getting fired?)

Theres no market there for another huge fps franchise, which is why the only shooters that went over the 5mil mark are Battlefield, COD and Halo. Weve seen dozens of fps this gen and people have shown time in time again they arent interested.

19James89
19James89

It has the potential to be a billion-dollar series, but I won't be purchasing it.

Grimkillah
Grimkillah

Here is a question, do you want to play the same game for ten years? I don't, I like to move on and experience wide variety of games and genres. To play the same game for ten years like what Destiny is planned, is somewhat boring.

XxXDarkness0XxX
XxXDarkness0XxX

i really dont know why everyone is so pumped for Destiny, it really only looks like a averaged shooter. not to sound harsh to anyone that is gonna hate but i know for fact i wont get it 

pvspartan36
pvspartan36

@ishsgames While Bungie has the majority of the creative control for Destiny- meaning that they have the most say in how the game is made and what goes into it- I think it is likely that Activision has the final say for platforms.

Don_Mattrick
Don_Mattrick

@RedLegZeff Skylanders is really popular among kids, my little brother has the whole collection and guess how much did it cost?...a fortune.

valknight
valknight

@blackothh I watched the video earlier.. I am stoked now. I was iffy, but seeing the weapon progression trees was pretty cool.

DMND
DMND

@themc_7 Kids play games too. That's why Pokemon and Mario kicks everybody's arse.

DMND
DMND

@Hal3x It's an online open world fps my friend. It's gonna have updates and expansions, not sequels.

Fastphase1
Fastphase1

@Kr3isen Bungie is an independed studio after the sucsess of Halo. This is what they've been commited now but what happens after is ther own decision. Plus they bought their independence from Microsoft in 2007 so they'll stay independend, I think.

u1tradt
u1tradt

'There's no market for another huge FPS franchise'

Ever heard of Far Cry 3? Or how about Borderlands 2? I think you will find there is a massive market for FPSs, which is why so many are released these days.

Besides, the guy never said Destiny was going to be a billion dollar franchise off the back of 1 title. Obviously they plan to release multiple sequels. So if they release like 5 Destiny games and each one sells in the region of 3-4 million then it's easily a billion dollar franchise.

ernelson1976
ernelson1976

@Grimkillah The thing is, not every gamer is like you. And given sales history, there are a lot of gamers who like to play the same game with minor changes every year for years on end. So I think a lot of people would answer your question: yes. For all the complaining about COD, it's a sure bet for most game buyers--they know they're going to like it and play the hell out of it.

Bhemont
Bhemont

@Grimkillah Here is the answer, yes, yes I do.  I've been looking for an MMO that can do that desperately, and believe me I am not the only one.  The thing is, I won't be playing a game that I can spend years upon in exclusively, I'll be playing other titles from time to time just to catch a breather, but I do however doubt that any game has that potential, WoW did it, somehow, and that's that.  

And yeah, this game looks awesome, but there are things that I don't know yet, one I don't like being locked in 1st person perspective, renders the gearing useless imo, 2nd, is this a Borderlands type of game with more emphasize on story or what am I seeing in the video? Oo

PlatinumPaladin
PlatinumPaladin

@Grimkillah Hell, people have been playing CoD year after year for nearly six years, sports games for even longer. Someone will play it for ten years.

savagetwinkie
savagetwinkie

@XxXDarkness0XxX this is a really shallow way to look at this game, in fact you could some up 100% of shooters in this way. The particular shooting part of shooting games hasn't really changed much since the first game after doom where you could look up and down. 

if your basing your judgement on the shooting mechanics in any shooter your missing like 95% of the rest of the game. 


ernelson1976
ernelson1976

@XxXDarkness0XxX When I look at it, all I see Halo--the Bungie art design is all over it, and not nearly different enough for my taste. And aside from the first game, I don't particularly like Halo. And Borderlands ... meh. So I don't quite see it either, myself. But then Halo sells well, and I certainly understand why people like Borderlands. So I'll see what people think, but my impression is that it looks like same-old-stuff to me. But I'll reserve judgment until we see the finished game.

pvspartan36
pvspartan36

@DMND @Hal3x Not quite. From what we do know about the old contract that was previously released, Destiny will have actual sequels, with major expansions between the main titles.

genjuroT
genjuroT

@DMND How do you KNOW this? How do you know they won't just release a $60 sequel every year, which you can simply transfer your character(s) over to back and forth. Why not this, instead of $15 updates? It sounds more profitable. btw they said series, soo.. not buying it btw.

Fernin-Ker
Fernin-Ker

@Fastphase1

I think you must have missed the news, but Bungie was only independent for like, a couple months until they signed that publishing agreement with Activision which made them all but an Acti-in house studio. Bungie is independent in name, and name only.

Fernin-Ker
Fernin-Ker

@pvspartan36

I think you should go read up on the publicly released terms of their publishing deal. I don't think you'll like what you find.

pvspartan36
pvspartan36

@Fernin-Ker @Fastphase1 No. Bungie is truly independent. They are not owned by Activision. Activision is publishing the Destiny franchise, but that's all it is. A publishing deal. Activision has no control over Bungie as a company, only some control over Destiny.