Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII’s physical sales hit 11 year franchise low, but don’t blame franchise fatigue

The retail sector has been hit hard recently with physical sales of FIFA 19 and AC Odyssey down considerably over last year’s iterations. Amazingly, or perhaps alarmingly, not even the almighty Call of Duty can fill retailer’s coffers with cash – Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII’s physical sales were the franchise’s lowest in eleven years.

This doesn’t necessarily mean CoD is suffering for franchise fatigue, however. Quite the contrary, in fact – it has performed exceptionally well on the digital stores. The PS4 version became the fastest selling PSN download of all-time, while the Xbox One version was Activision’s biggest ever digital launch, beating Destiny 2. Sales of the PC edition were twice as high as CoD: WWII, meanwhile.

Our theory is that news of Black Ops IIII’s 50GB day one patch ushered many towards digital this year. The series’ MP-only focus likely played a part in this, too. also reports that WWE 2K19’s sales have slumped over last year, this time by 37.5%. It still managed to chart at #4, though.

Typically, sales of FIFA, Call of Duty, WWE and Assassin’s Creed see a boost in the run-up to Christmas due to new promotions, such as TV advertising. So there is some hope to regain some lost profits. Black Friday will doubtlessly give the retail sector a sizeable cash injection too, and let’s not rule out RDR2 breaking sales records.

As you may have guessed, Black Ops IIII’s sales were still strong enough for it to take the UK chart top spot.

FIFA 19 fell to #2, while AC Odyssey also dropped one place down to #3. Forza Horizon 4 wasn’t as lucky, falling two positions to #5.

Marvel’s Spider-Man swung in at #6, Super Mario Party dropped to #7 during its second week on sale, Crash Bandicoot held onto #8, while Shadow of the Tomb Raider fell to #9. Then at #10 it’s Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

Square-Enix’s The World Ends with You on Switch was the week’s only other top 40 new arrival, taking #22. Goosebumps: The Game did manage to take #20 in the Switch chart, however. Not bad going for a full price (!) conversion of a three-year-old game.

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