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Call of Duty DLC Buyers Double, as Activision Blizzard Revenue and Profit Rise

The numbers are in.


Activision Blizzard today reported earnings for its latest quarter ended September 30, offering a closer look at the company's business performance over the past three months.

No game sales were announced, but Activision reiterated that Overwatch has 20 million registered players; no Blizzard game has reached 20 million players faster. Additionally, Activision said World of Warcraft's Legion expansion sold 3.3 million copies in its first 24 hours, which matches the record set by past expansions. Among the noteworthy announcements was that the number of people buying Call of Duty DLC "more than doubled" compared to last year, with "robust" sales for the game's season pass and standalone map packs. Average revenue per Call of Duty player also increased.

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In terms of financials, Activision pulled in $1.57 billion for its fiscal third quarter, representing a record for that period. By comparison, Activision made $990 million during the same period last year. Revenue from digital sources grew 114 percent year-over-year to an all-time record for any quarter of $1.34 billion. Net income was $199 million, up from $127 million during the same period last year.

Activision said it had 482 million monthly active users during the quarter across all of its games. This includes games from Candy Crush developer King, which Activision owns.

Additionally, Blizzard had its biggest quarter in its history in terms of monthly active users, which stood at 42 million. That's up 50 percent compared to last year, Blizzard said, calling out Overwatch and World of Warcraft as top performers. Blizzard also set all-time records for weekly and daily active users, as well as play time, during the period. Additionally, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft had a record quarterly number of monthly active users; these grew by a "double-digit" percentage.

As for Activision Publishing, which covers Call of Duty, Skylanders, Destiny, and others, it had the biggest quarter in its history with 46 million monthly active users. Destiny monthly active users rose quarter-over-quarter, though a specific number was not provided.

As for King, it had 394 million monthly active users for the quarter, which was "down slightly." Gamers spent 10 billion hours playing Activision games during the quarter, the company said.

During an earnings call that followed this announcement, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg said Infinite Warfare is not expected to sell as well as 2015's game, Call of Duty: Black Ops III. He pointed out that Infinite Warfare is a new Call of Duty brand, while Black Ops is an established, best-selling one.

This story has been updated and corrected.

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