Activision have noticed a "downturn" in pre-orders - and Call of Duty is "not immune" | PCGamesN

Get better acquainted with Dragon Age: Inquisition's Iron Bull, Sera and Dorian

Don't call them dreadnoughts: Fractured Space is a multiplayer ship combat game from the Strike Suit Zero team

Lucas Pope's Return of the Obra Dinn is a 1-bit mystery, and you can play some of it right now

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

Activision have noticed a "downturn" in pre-orders - and Call of Duty is "not immune"

Metal men want you to pre-order. Why do you not pre-order?

Games publishers would just love it if we’d pre-order some of their games. They’ve made that abundantly clear in the last few years, with a trend toward rewarding people who buy a game before they know it’s any good.

But it’s not really working. Activision told investors they’ve seen an industry-wide decline in pre-order figures.

Activision Publishing boss Eric Hirshberg said the company had “reset expectations” for pre-orders after observing a “secular downturn”.

“We think that’s happening due to a number of factors,” he said. “Things like increased digital consumption, titles being widely available on day 1 and the decline overall for demand on previous-gen consoles.” 

Call of Duty is “not immune to that” - but the results of an internal consumer study have led the publisher to be confident about the prospects of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare.

“We still expect the Call of Duty to lead the industry in preorders once again this year,” said Hirshberg.

“We’re seeing purchase intent for Advanced Warfare to be significantly above that which we saw in Call of Duty: Ghosts, and actually in line with our past top-performing titles.”

Publishers like Activision have previously used pre-order sales as a key metric to work out how popular a game is going to be, and consequently persuade retailers to sell it. From here on out, they’ll have to rely on omens like extreme weather change or unusual animal behaviour.

What was the last game you pre-ordered? Or do you Kickstart these days instead?

Login or Register
2
+2
-0
Dog Pants's picture
947

I'd like to think this is because consumers are becoming wise to pre-orders, but the cynic in me says it's going to be something less direct, like Steam Sales encouraging people to wait.

I try not to pre-order. I'm so rarely in a rush to play anything these days, especially with so many good games I've not got round to playing yet. XCOM was possibly the last game I pre-ordered, and that was because I played it in advance.

I do Kickstart, but usually when a game is struggling and I want it so succeed, or to support a genre I want to expand. I also Early Access, but only when I think the game is in a state to be worth my time playing.

1
+1
-0
Mctittles's picture
74

Yea I was just thinking maybe they should switch to putting COD on kickstarter if they want people to buy before it's proven.

Last game I pre-ordered...hmmm. I don't think I've pre-ordered anything since Mario/Pilotwings and the Nintendo 64. This was just because there was a chance I couldn't get it at all, really the only reason I can convince myself to pre-order.

I do have a couple early access games though like Kerbal Space Program and Factorio. Seems nearly inevitable nowadays.

I can't wait to order my early access Oculus and maybe someone will release an early access PC so I can play my unfinished games on some unfinished hardware in this brave new world :).

1
+1
-0
Htorne's picture
224

Perhaps we will never see the Pre-purchase a Pre-order option, what a shame, I was looking forward to that. /irony off

1
+1
-0
avatar
35

The last one I went through with was GT5. Games come out too broken now to take that risk though.

I think another factor is that the return policies for used games are much more forgiving than for new stuff and you get a little bit off to start with. There are also tons of used copies even on day 1 for these big titles. It's a much safer choice in a market where you are selling $60 items that may or may not work.

1
+1
-0
jon_hill987's picture
21

Why pre-order a buggy mess when you can buy the GotY edition 8 months later for half the price with all the bugs ironed out and the DLC included?

1
+1
-0
BraveToaster's picture
131

"with all the bugs ironed"

You had me up until here. They put that effort into making DLC, not fixing the game

1
+1
-0
jon_hill987's picture
21

Well yes, that is my point, i'm not buying it before or at release for full price if it will be broken. I wait for the sale of the GotY edition when they have bothered to fix it. I have not bought Arkham Origins at all even though I loved the others after the developer came out and said that they were not going to fix anymore bugs but were going to release some DLC.

Alienware - Game VictoriousNvidia Shield - Titanfall
Win a ticket to the Tank Museum and a premium Fury Sherman with World of Tanks

World of Tanks

Win a ticket to the Tank Museum and a premium Fury Sherman with World of Tanks

Get better acquainted with Dragon Age: Inquisition's Iron Bull, Sera and Dorian

Get better acquainted with Dragon Age: Inquisition's Iron Bull, Sera and Dorian

Don't call them dreadnoughts: Fractured Space is a multiplayer ship combat game from the Strike Suit Zero team

Don't call them dreadnoughts: Fractured Space is a multiplayer ship combat game from the Strike Suit Zero team

Lucas Pope's Return of the Obra Dinn is a 1-bit mystery, and you can play some of it right now

Lucas Pope's Return of the Obra Dinn is a 1-bit mystery, and you can play some of it right now

Titanfall's next update will add wave-based co-op shenanigans and a bunch of new enemies

Titanfall's next update will add wave-based co-op shenanigans and a bunch of new enemies

Lords of the Fallen is a bit tricky, so Deck13 has broken down the mechanics in video form

Lords of the Fallen is a bit tricky, so Deck13 has broken down the mechanics in video form

Lords of the Fallen is a ferocious, and infuriating Dark Souls clone

Lords of the Fallen

Lords of the Fallen is a ferocious, and infuriating Dark Souls clone

Unity co-founder and CEO steps out of the ring, tagging ex-EA boss John Riccitiello

Unity co-founder and CEO steps out of the ring, tagging ex-EA boss John Riccitiello

Judge dismisses securities fraud suit against EA; executives were just being optimistic

Judge dismisses securities fraud suit against EA; executives were just being optimistic

Elder Scrolls Online and Skyrim books will cover the lore and the land of Tamriel

Elder Scrolls Online and Skyrim books will cover the lore and the land of Tamriel

Aliens by way of XCOM game, Halfway, gets mod support

Aliens by way of XCOM game, Halfway, gets mod support

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor has a place called Gorgrond that’s positively beastly

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor has a place called Gorgrond that’s positively beastly

Red:Out is Wipeout, but on the PC. It’s about time.

Red:Out

Red:Out is Wipeout, but on the PC. It’s about time.

The Stanley Parable sells over a million copies;

The Stanley Parable sells over a million copies; "The Narrator decided not to tell Stanley"

Ragnar Tørnquist defends ableist language in Dreamfall Chapters:

Ragnar Tørnquist defends ableist language in Dreamfall Chapters: "Those people exist in real life, and so they must exist in fiction"

Titanfall's

Titanfall's "biggest update" is still ahead of it; expect details via Twitch today

Master of Draenor I'm pulling your strings: Metallica are playing at BlizzCon 2014

Master of Draenor I'm pulling your strings: Metallica are playing at BlizzCon 2014

Epic's hosting an Unreal Engine game jam this weekend, so get tinkering

Epic's hosting an Unreal Engine game jam this weekend, so get tinkering

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor gear guide: getting started

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor gear guide: getting started

Topic of the Week: What games are you looking forward to in 2015?

Topic of the Week: What games are you looking forward to in 2015?

Rodina is No Man's Sky on a budget

Rodina is No Man's Sky on a budget

Paranautical Activity developer steps down after threatening Gabe Newell

Paranautical Activity developer steps down after threatening Gabe Newell

It will never end: Assassin's Creed Chronicles will be a series

It will never end: Assassin's Creed Chronicles will be a series

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor free DLC lets you dress all in black and laugh in the face of poison

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor free DLC lets you dress all in black and laugh in the face of poison