Incoming (American) Football analogy.
Its sales may be declining, but Call of Duty has still consistently managed to be the top selling game franchise over the better part of the last decade. Oh, sure, it may have been beaten by individual games at some point in time or another- Mario Kart Wii and New Super Mario Bros. Wii both outsold Modern Warfare 2 in 2008, while last year, Grand Theft Auto V did better than Call of Duty: Ghosts- but no other franchise has consistently managed to deliver the kind of numbers that Call of Duty does, for every year, for so many years straight.
Talking about that, Sledgehammer Games’ co-founder Michael Condrey discussed the kind of pressure that is on the development teams to consistently manage to be the top franchise that Call of Duty now is.
“Yeah, there is a lot of pressure,” Condrey told Polygon. “It’s curious, because it’s a question we get asked a lot about sales. And it’s a weird answer, but its true that we don’t ever talk about sales.”
“I was thinking about it the other day,” Condrey said. “So like the New England Patriots. Tom Brady. The winningest Super Bowl team in the past decade. Those poor bastards, they have to win the Super Bowl every year or they’ve failed, right? … And so for us, it’s a little bit like that. … There’s some pressure with that, I won’t lie.”
That makes sense- already, we are starting to hear the sharks starting to circle the water because it appears Advanced Warfare is tracking substantially lower in pre-orders than many recent Call of Duty games. In spire of the fact that it will still probably sell millions.
Condrey also answered a question that many old school Call of Duty fans have been wondering about for years now- will Call of Duty ever return to the World War II era, where it started out?
“I’m a big fan of World War II fiction. I love Band of Brothers. I love Saving Private Ryan. So I want to play that game again,” Condrey said. “In my head, a next-generation World War II game with the production values of Band of Brothers would be awesome. But I do think the way the game feels today [with Advanced Warfare] is going to set an expectation with fans.”
Alright, I guess that’s as good an answer as we are going to get on that one.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare launches November 4 on Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PC.