Call Of Duty Might Ditch Annual Release Under Microsoft, Says Report

After almost 20-years of releasing yearly, Call of Duty might ditch the annual release schedule under new Microsoft management.

That’s according to a new report from Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier. Microsoft made the shocking announcement earlier this week that it is set to acquire Activision Blizzard for almost $70 billion. It’s an industrial sized earthquake to the gaming industry, and plenty will likely change because of it.

Something that Schreier thinks is likely to change is how often we see new Call of Duty games. At the moment, we see a new Call of Duty every single year. Lead development rotating between Infinity Ward, Treyarch, and Sledgehammer Games. This has apparently led to several instances of crunch and overwork as teams struggle to push these games out.

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Credit: Activision Blizzard

While this has worked in Activision’s favour for the most part, it seems like the flaws of a yearly release are beginning to show. Call of Duty: Vanguard sales were down 36% in the UK this year, a disappointing figure for Blizzard. This might be down to player fatigue. With Call of Duty operating as a live service through Warzone, it can feel like Call of Duty overload these days.

Schreier explains that, “High-level employees at Activision have discussed moving away from the annual release schedule, according to two people familiar with the discussions“. However, this change isn’t expected to take effect until a couple years time. It’s likely that we’ll still see a new Call of Duty in 2022, rumoured to be Modern Warfare II.

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