For over a decade, the Call of Duty franchise has been making a play for gamers' money. Every year, publisher Activision releases a brand new edition of the first-person shooter, including bigger set-pieces and even performances from Academy Award-winning actors to get people interested.
Last year's Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare turned Call of Duty's usual gameplay on its head by throwing super-powered exo suits into the mix. That was done in an attempt to revitalize the franchise after several years of sliding sales but Advanced Warfare actually sold less than 2013's Call of Duty: Ghosts.
But for a series like Call of Duty, which regularly tops sales charts all over the world, decreasing numbers don't mean that it's on its last legs. In fact, Activision is so keen to show off Call of Duty's sales that the publisher has now released an infographic detailing several key stats from the franchise's history.
The biggest reveal from the infographic is that the Call of Duty franchise has passed 175 million games sold. Activision says that since the series launched, a copy of Call of Duty has been sold every two seconds. This includes Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (the best selling Call of Duty title so far), Call of Duty: Black Ops and Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 which have all sold over 23 million units each.
Also impressive is the fact that over 100 billion multiplayer matches have been played in Call of Duty so far, which would total 390 million American football seasons if each Call of Duty match equalled one professional game. That's unsurprising, given that one of the main draws to Call of Duty is its multiplayer and in the last few years Activision has capitalized on this by branching out into eSports; this year's Call of Duty Championship is currently taking place in Los Angeles, California. Activision also states that 300 billion grenades have been thrown and 579 billion in-game awards have been given out, which presumably includes rewards for levelling up and defeating challenges in Call of Duty multiplayer.
The numbers may be impressive but Activision will have to work hard if it wants to improve on them and prevent the series' sales from sliding any further. This year's Call of Duty is being developed by Treyarch and according to a game research firm, it will be Call of Duty: Blacks Ops 3. Nothing is known about the game but Activision usually reveals Call of Duty games in May, so fans will likely have more information then.
Is it too late for the Call of Duty series to turn itself around? What does Activision need to do to improve Call of Duty's sales?