Michael Pachter: Activision Should Charge a Fee for Call of Duty Multiplayer

December 7, 2012 -

This is sure to put analyst Michael Pachter on someone's naughty list: Recently he said that Activision needs to start charging a fee for the multiplayer portion of its Call of Duty games. Wedbush Securities industry analyst Michael Pachter made his comments during the Digital Game Monetization Summit in San Francisco, California (as reported by GamesIndustry International). During his presentation he said that Activision made a serious mistake when it didn't implement a subscription-based model for Call of Duty multiplayer.

Take-Two CEO: Annual Releases Can Hurt Franchise Sales

November 28, 2012 -

My, Mr. Zelnick sure is chatty this week.

Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick told GameSpot UK that the secret to Grand Theft Auto's continued success is the fact that the games are released years apart, making each debut special.

"It's our view that if you want intellectual properties to be permanent," said Zelnick, "then you run the risk in that circumstance of having consumers fall out of love with that franchise. [Activision] obviously views the world differently."

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Gen. David Petraeus Gets Promotion in Call of Duty: Black Ops II Game

November 14, 2012 -

Gen. David Petraeus, who resigned recently from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) due to a scandal related to an extra-marital affair (which continues to play out in the news this week) has apparently received a promotion in the latest chapter of the Call of Duty series. In the latest game - released this week - Black Ops II - Petraeus is the Secretary of Defense in the year 2025. He appears in part of the story, riding aboard the U.S.S. Barack Obama.

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Elderly People Respond to Call of Duty: Black Ops II Trailer

November 5, 2012 -

YouTube sensation The Fine Brothers Productions offers a nifty new video featuring a group of elderly people watching and reacting to the new trailer for Call of Duty: Black Ops II. While some of the "seasoned" participants seemed close minded about the idea of children (teens) or adults playing such a violent first-person shooter (one person said it could train people to kill) there are a few bright spots of commentary on the usefulness of violent video games as a teaching tool.

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Activision Rolls Out Call of Duty Dog Tags to Support The Call of Duty Endowment

November 1, 2012 -

Activision is gearing up to sell Call of Duty dog tags at select retailers throughout North America, with the proceeds going to its non-profit charitable organization, the Call of Duty Endowment. The Call of Duty dog tags will carry a suggested retail price of $4.99 and will be for sale beginning today at retailers GameStop, Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, Best Buy and Target.

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Poll: Is Editing the Favela CoD Map the Right Thing To Do?

October 24, 2012 -

Earlier this month, an unknown number of CoD players balked at the religious text inscribed on the frame of a picture hung in the bathroom of the Favela multiplayer map.  In response, developer Infinity Ward promised to edit the offending imagery and subsequently removed the entire map from play.

About two weeks later, the edited map was made available to PS3 gamers.  Xbox 360 and PC players should have access to it soon.

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Edited Favela Map Returns to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Multiplayer Rotation

October 23, 2012 -

Earlier this month some Muslims in the Call of Duty community complained that the Favela multiplayer map in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was offensive because a painting placed above a toilet had holy teachings written around its frame "Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty."

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CoD Dev Joins Extra Life Charity Game Marathon

September 11, 2012 -

On October 20th, Call of Duty developer Infinity Ward will participate in Extra Life’s 24-hour gaming marathon to help raise money for the Children's Miracle Network Hospital where kids are treated regardless of their family’s ability to cover medical costs.

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Dehydrated Teenager Hospitalized After 4-Day CoD Marathon

August 8, 2012 -

CBS Cleveland News is reporting that 15-year-old Tyler Rigby has been hospitalized after a 4-day gaming marathon left him severely dehydrated.  Reportedly, the Columbus teen locked himself in his room to play Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.  According to his mother, he emerged for the occasional potty and snack break.

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Treyarch Reveals 'Champion of the 99 Percent' as Villain in Black Ops 2

July 11, 2012 -

Treyarch is diving headfirst into politics with the new villain from Call of Duty Black Ops 2. According to Gameranx the new villain will be Raul Menendez, a man described as a "champion of the 99 percent," who is a lot like Wikileaks front man Julian Assange. In the game Menendez hopes to start a "global insurrection against the status quo."

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Bobby Kotick Acknowledges the Challenges of Bringing Call of Duty to China

July 6, 2012 -

Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick admitted in a recent interview with CNBC Asia’s Squawk Box that bringing Call of Duty Online to market in China is a risky proposition. While Kotick expresses confidence in Tencent Holdings in making the game based on its popular first-person shooter series successful in Mainland China, Kotick also knows that there is a risk when bringing a Western game into a new market with different business models and player tastes.

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Activision in Pact With Tencent for Call of Duty Online

July 3, 2012 -

Activision Blizzard has inked a deal with Chinese online games giant Tencent Holdings Limited to bring Call of Duty Online to Chinese players. In its announcement this morning Activision said that Call of Duty Online has been in development by Activision Publishing for approximately two years. Under the multi-year agreement with Activision Publishing, Tencent gains the exclusive licensing rights to operate Call of Duty Online in mainland China. The game is described as free-to-play and uses a monetized in-game store to sell virtual items.

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Activision Settles with West, Zampella, and Former Infinity Ward Developers

May 31, 2012 -

Update: Polygon is reporting that, after a few days of closed door negotiations, Activision has settled its lawsuit with former Infinity Ward creative leads Jason West and Vincent Zampella, and 40 former Infinity Ward developers. Attorneys involved in the case told Polygon that the case won't be going to trial. A jury trial was scheduled for tomorrow.

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Bungie - Activision Contract Unsealed as Part of West & Zampella Lawsuit

May 22, 2012 -

Documents from the legal battle between Activision and former Infinity Ward studio leads Jason West and Vincent Zampella have been unsealed revealing a bunch of details on the contract between Bungie and Activision. According to the LA Times, the documents are part of the case because the duo's lawyer Robert M. Schwartz is using the details of that deal to demand compensation for his clients.

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Activision v. West and Zampella Court Case Revelations

May 16, 2012 -

LA Times reporter Ben Fritz, who is in close proximity of the Activision v. West and Zampella court case happening in Los Angeles today has been furiously tweeting various scoops via his Twitter account. Among the revelations are that Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle has denied Activision's motion to postpone the case for an additional thirty days. The trail will begin as scheduled on May 29.

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Activision Cuts Infinity Ward Employee Group a $47 Million Check

May 14, 2012 -

According to a report from Polygon citing a source "familiar with the case," Activision has delivered a check for $47 million to lawyers representing the so-called "Infinity Ward Employee Group." This group made up of ex-employees of the studio that created the popular Call of Duty series claimed that Activision failed to pay to pay them royalties owed on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

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Analyst Maintains Outperform Rating on Activision, Raises Q2 and 2012 Revenue Estimates

May 10, 2012 -

Analyst Colin Sebastian of Robert W. Baird & Co. Incorporated sent out a note this morning to investors of Activision stock saying that they are maintaining a rating of outperform. This rating is based on Activision's latest financial results which were fairly solid thanks to sales of its Skylanders line of toy-game hybrid products for various platforms and continued sales growth in its Call of Duty Elite membership program.

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Community Driven Modern Warfare 3 Petition Encourages Boycott of DLC

May 3, 2012 -

A new petition is online to protest the release of DLC for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. More specifically protest organizers are urging the CoD community not to download and buy any DLC for the game until Infinity Ward and Activsion fix a number of problems with the core game. So far the petition has 240 signatures, the Twitter feed dedicated to it has 1183 followers and a YouTube video explaining what the protest is all about has been viewed 2400 times.

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Oliver North's Call of Duty Black Ops 2 Pitch

May 3, 2012 -

Fox News commentator Oliver North has been signed to help Activision sell its next big Call of Duty game, Call of Duty Black Ops 2. North appears on-screen in an infomercial for the game talking about war. We'll leave the characterizations to Fox News (from his bio there as a contributor to the network) and this Wikipedia entry on him, but the short story is that North's past is marked with scandal.

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Analyst: Call of Duty Brand Losing Long Tail Effect at Retail

April 11, 2012 -

PiperJaffray analyst Michael Olson says that Call of Duty's "shortened tail" and a general lack of hits are the reasons for lower retail games sales recently. Olson says that the latest game in the series - Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 - isn't maintaining the same long tail sales that 2010's Call of Duty: Black Ops enjoyed. He projects that the game will be the eighth largest selling game in March 2012, comparing it to Blacks Ops - which was the fifth best selling game in the same period a year ago.

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Worlds Inc. Sues Activision Blizzard over Virtual Worlds

April 9, 2012 -

A company called Worlds Inc. has filed a lawsuit against Activision Blizzard for infringing a patent the company holds related to virtual worlds. Let the trolling begin anew. Worlds Inc. claims that the company is violating a patent it holds related to "systems and method for enabling users to interact in a virtual space." The company alleges in its claim that Activision's World of Warcraft and Call of Duty games violate its patents and that it is due compensation for it.

Judge Dismisses One Fraud Claim from West v. Activision Case

March 9, 2012 -

Activision Blizzard had some luck this week in court when one of the claims of fraud brought against it in the ongoing legal battle against former Infinity Ward heads (Jason West and Vincent Zampella) and Electronic Arts was dismissed by the presiding judge. California State Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle (Los Angeles) today sided with Activision in their assertion that a fraudulent-inducement claim made by West and Zampella was without merit and shouldn't be allowed to move forward. Judge Berle let the duo's claim of promissory fraud move forward.

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Rhode Island Duo Blame Call of Duty for Threats to Local High School

March 7, 2012 -

Common sense dictates that you can't scream "fire!" in a crowded movie theater and that doing so isn't considered protected speech. In the wake of the recent Ohio school shootings, making public jokes about shooting up your local high school also falls under the purview of widely held common sense doctrine.

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Updated: Editor Comments on Activision’s Blacklisting of Gameblog

February 18, 2012 -

Yesterday, we reported that French gaming site Gameblog had apparently been blacklisted by Activision for reporting that Amazon’s French portal had briefly posted a listing for Call of Duty: Black Ops 2.

Gameblog editor Grégory Szriftgiser spoke to Kotaku about what happened:

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Report: Activision Lashes Out at Game Blog for Revealing Name of Next Call of Duty

February 17, 2012 -

Activision is not a happy camper today as the name of its next Call of Duty title is leaked by Amazon's French portal, then quickly taken offline. According to the Amazon France page, the name of the next game is "Call of Duty Black Ops 2." The news was first reported by Gameblog.

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Black Ops Earns Guinness Book Record for 'Best Ending'

February 13, 2012 -

Normally when you imagine someone getting in the Guinness Book of World Records, you correlate the entry to some kind of effort being involved. Someone eats 1,000 eggs, or juggles for 24 hours, etc. But with the new Gamer’s Edition of the book they have added a new category called "the Best Game Ending" and allowed about 13,000 fans to vote.

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Law of the Game Look-Ahead: Call of Duty Lawsuit

January 31, 2012 -

Zack Bastian, contributor the lovely Law of the Game Blog, talks about what to expect in the Call of Duty lawsuit between EA, Activision and former Infinity Ward front men Jason West and Vince Zampella. Besides offering a look back at the case as it has progressed so far and what caused it to happen in the first place, Bastian explains why this case is so fascinating to legal eagles. Here's a sample (I encourage you to go and read the whole thing):

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Activision Turned MW3 Leak Into a Marketing Opportunity

January 20, 2012 -

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. According to an Ad Age report, Activision publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg said that the Modern Warfare 3 leak onto the Internet was his "first real crisis on the job” and forced the company to employ some unorthodox methods to soften the blow. He said that when the news broke the marketing department was called into a half-day meeting with risk management to discuss their options.

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Jesse Divnich: GTA V Will Be 2012's Biggest Release

December 28, 2011 -

As part of his Top Five 2012 predictions feature on IndustryGamers, EEDAR analyst Jesse Divnich predicted that Grand Theft Auto V will be the top selling game of the year. He even goes so far as to say that it will beat out the next Call of Duty game.

"It goes without saying that GTA V will be one of the year's biggest releases, but I will take it one step farther and say GTA V will be 2012's biggest release," said Divnich.

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California Court: Activision Case Against EA-West-Zampella Goes Forward

December 22, 2011 -

A California Superior Court judge has told EA that it must defend itself in the $400 million contract-interference suit brought by Activision over Infinity Ward founders Jason West and Vince Zampella.

3 comments | Read more

 
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MaskedPixelanteI can't believe Kenji Yamamoto got another job. Then again, his job on Smash was "musical arrangment", so copying other people's work is right up his alley.12/26/2014 - 9:31pm
Matthew Wilsonthe company that hosts it is a cyber security firm, and from what I understand it is the data they they see just shown publicly.12/26/2014 - 8:22pm
Wonderkarpa question about that website, Matthew...how does it know its a cyberattack or not12/26/2014 - 8:06pm
Matthew Wilsonfor those intreasted in seeing cyber attacks in real time check out this site. http://map.ipviking.com/12/26/2014 - 7:51pm
PHX Corp@MP you can add me on XBL and Nintendo Network if you want, I go under TrustyGem(Same gamertag as on Steam)12/26/2014 - 2:01pm
CMinerI blame North Korea.12/25/2014 - 11:49pm
MechaTama31For the last few weeks, the GP site fails to load about 2/3 of the times I try.12/25/2014 - 11:13pm
MaskedPixelanteOK, is GP having trouble loading for anyone but me?12/25/2014 - 9:21pm
Matthew Wilsonits a bunch of script kiddies. ddosing is one of the easiest thing to do,and most companies can not stop it sadly.12/25/2014 - 5:05pm
MaskedPixelanteI like Nintendo as much as the next person, they're pretty much the only company putting out the games I want to play, but that was pretty embarassing to have NNID go down due to overuse.12/25/2014 - 4:35pm
MaskedPixelanteSee? It's NOT a repeat of last year's fiasco.12/25/2014 - 4:22pm
PHX CorpLizard squad is responsible for The XBL/PSN shutdown https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSpZvsoWvig12/25/2014 - 4:17pm
IanCOh shut up bitching about Nintendo. At least they advised people to downloading updates before the big day. Sony/MS? Not a peep.12/25/2014 - 3:50pm
MaskedPixelanteBoth PSN and Xbox Live are down. Since I'm sure Sony and Microsoft have better online support than Nintendo did last year, this isn't from "everyone logging onto their new devices all at once".12/25/2014 - 3:48pm
prh99John Romero's Christmas present, a custom Icon of Sin sculpture. http://www.pcgamer.com/john-romero-gets-the-icon-of-sin-for-christmas/12/25/2014 - 3:37am
Matthew Wilsonthe interview will be on youtube/xb1/ andriod today.12/24/2014 - 1:05pm
james_fudge1900's?12/24/2014 - 12:56pm
james_fudgeYeah we could go way way back :)12/24/2014 - 12:56pm
E. Zachary KnightCopyright law in general has been broken since at least 1976. Could be even earlier than that.12/24/2014 - 12:24pm
james_fudgeWhat he said :) They want to make it worse than it already is.12/24/2014 - 12:14pm
 

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