The extraordinarily successful launch of Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, which generated $500 million dollars in its first 24 hours of availability, has propelled the Call of Duty series past notable franchises such as Harry Potter and Star Wars in worldwide box office revenue. The Call of Duty juggernaut has broken records with nearly every new release, with Modern Warfare 3 holding the previous day-one revenue record with $400 million. Before that, the original Black Ops game made an astounding $360 million at release, a record for its time.
In a statement, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg likened the annual CoD release to that of an important world-wide cultural event.
Call of Duty has become more than a product people buy, it's a brand people buy into. And every November, we do more than just the launch of a game, we kick off an annual, unofficial but worldwide phenomenon called the Call of Duty season.
Despite the massive number of sales, user and professional reviewers have been relatively reserved in their outlooks compared to that of previous CoD titles. The average Metacritic scores for the game are hovering around 80, noticeably lower than the franchise-defining early CoD games. These reviews will surely change as more people soak in their Black Ops 2 experience, but those of you on the fence may want to hold off on pulling the trigger just yet.