Activision Blizzard Q4 2013: We're Number One, Console's Looking Sweet

Karloff

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Activision Blizzard Q4 2013: We're Number One, Console's Looking Sweet



No real slippage in World of Warcraft subscriber numbers this time, though its popularity seems to be waning in the East.

With $1.52 billion (GAAP) in revenue for Q4 2013 and total yearly revenue of $4.58 billion (GAAP), Bobby Kotick has every reason to be cheerful right now. The days when Vivendi [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/128597-Activision-Buyout-Allowed-by-Delaware-Supreme-Court] had a chokehold on the company are long since past, and now Activision Blizzard feels it's time to crow a little. Call of Duty: Ghosts? Number one across all platforms, and also the number one next generation game, says Kotick. Skylander? The number one children's game, in Q4 2013. Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm? The number one PC title in North America. World of Warcraft? The number one subscription MMORPG.

But something else has been doing well - "to our positive surprise" says Kotick - and that's the new console generation. Activision Blizzard is eyeing the Xbox One and PS4, and its improved online gaming capacity, not to mention its "potentially higher margin business models like the sale of virtual items, downloadable content and other value-added online services." Kotick sees lots of opportunity for Activision Blizzard in the console space, and is already talking up Destiny [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/132093-Activision-Destiny-Will-Become-The-Best-Selling-New-IP-in-History] big time. Mobile and tablet is also looking very attractive to Activision Blizzard; free-to-play casts an almost irresistible spell.

What of World of Warcraft's subscriber numbers? Those haven't slipped much, if at all. Q4 2013 ended with 7.8 million subs worldwide, which compares favourably with the 7.6 million users reported in the last quarter [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/129393-World-of-Warcraft-Slows-Losses-As-Activision-Beats-Q3-Outlook]. There has been some slippage in Eastern subscriber numbers, but an increase in Western subs made up for that loss.

Going forward, Blizzard expects the first couple of quarters in the next financial year to be a little quiet. There's been weakness in Xbox 360 and PS3 sales, which will have an impact on Skylanders and Call of Duty in-game transactions. But with Q3 comes Destiny, and after that launch - and Activision Blizzard's other new titles, like Hearthstone [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/131527-Hearthstone-Open-Beta-Begins] - Blizzard's looking forward to a happy fiscal 2014.

Source: Seeking Alpha [http://seekingalpha.com/article/2002731-activision-blizzards-management-discusses-q4-2013-results-earnings-call-transcript?all=true&find=blizzard%2Bactivision]


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suitepee7

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Dec 6, 2010
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the wording is pretty misleading here. "no real slippage", "those haven't slipped much, if at all", and there's an overall increase in subs. granted it is clarified later, but it is a pretty poor choice of words. a small increase overall would be better...

they do seem to be doing rather well for themselves though, didn't realise SCII:HotS was doing so well, same goes for skylanders
 

Flutterguy

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The fact these keep coming out makes me smile. Regardless of sales they are insecure because of the constant feedback thus they keep bringing out the PR department. I just hope this actually correlates into quality releases rather then .
 

Hairless Mammoth

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Good. Then I can say that nothing in Activision's roadmap entices me without making Kotick worry about tightening his belt. This kind of thing is what he loves saying and investors love reading. What I want to know is what the hell is Destiny? Why can't COD just die so a new genre can become the go to format for an easy, stagnate creative process for a few years? And why does DLC cost so much when Activision execs probably wipe their asses with $100 bills covered in gold leaf and orphans' tears(I hear that combination is especially soothing after fajitas night)?
Flutterguy said:
The fact these keep coming out makes me smile. Regardless of sales they are insecure because of the constant feedback thus they keep bringing out the PR department. I just hope this actually correlates into quality releases rather then .
I don't know. Kotick's starting to make arrogant remarks again. It has me worried that as soon as a hyped up title fails to meet sales expectations he's gonna can another studio or the poor souls who bought the game are gonna have to deal with expensive DLC breaking the game's balance. Though, the three developer COD scheme has me reaching for the popcorn.
 

Karloff

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Flutterguy said:
The fact these keep coming out makes me smile. Regardless of sales they are insecure because of the constant feedback thus they keep bringing out the PR department. I just hope this actually correlates into quality releases rather then .

All of the recent Activision posts are to do with a single event Activision's 4th quarter financial release.
 

windlenot

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Mar 27, 2011
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I'm confused by that title. Are they saying a specific console is looking sweet? Or that consoles in themselves are looking sweet? Either way, it's bothering me a lot as it's in the title... It can't be just me!
 

Charli

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It's true...alot of my old WoW buddies have come back to partake in Flex mode raiding. It's been great.

What with the promise of model updates and the player housing garrison features next expansion, they've been coming back to prepare their accounts and grab the highly coveted heirloom weapons from Garrosh.