News Posts matching #Activision

Return to Keyword Browsing

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War System Requirements Revealed

The system requirements lists of "Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War" were released, covering a broad range of gaming segments, from competitive online play, to recommended AAA campaign playthrough, and even maxed out gameplay with RTX-on. "Black Ops: Cold War" appears to be optimized for an equally diverse set of use cases. There are three disk space requirement levels. For 50 GB you get only the multiplayer component with e-Sports content. For 175 GB, you get the multiplayer component and the single-player campaign. For 250 GB, you get these two, plus additional high-resolution content. Among the use-cases are "minimum," "recommended," "recommended with raytracing," "competitive," and "Ultra RTX."

For starters, there's the absolute bare minimum, which calls for a mid-range 4th Gen Intel "Haswell" or AMD FX "Vishera" processor; along with 8 GB of RAM, GeForce GTX 670 or Radeon HD 7850 graphics (circa 2012), and either 50 GB or 175 GB, depending on what you want to install. The "recommended" tier is for the game with medium-level eye-candy. It calls for a Core i5-2500K or Ryzen 5 1600X processor, 12 GB of RAM, and GTX 970 or GTX 1660 SUPER from the NVIDIA camp; or R9 390 or RX 580 from the AMD camp. "Recommended with raytracing," is essentially minimum requirements for raytraced content. You'll need at least a Core i7-8700K or Ryzen 7 1800X processor, 16 GB of RAM, and at least RTX 3070 graphics (if you can find one).

Activision-Blizzard to Close its Office in France

Activision-Blizzard is one of the largest companies involved in the making of video games and they are accountable for many popular game franchises known to every gamer. Today, according to a report from Bloomberg, we have found out that Activision-Blizzard holding company will close the doors of its office located in Versailles, France. This move puts an end to company operations in that country. The company has informed its employees on Tuesday regarding the office closure, and thus has laid-off about 400 people the office accounted for. Generally speaking, there were no developer roles involved here.

The France office specialized in marketing, localization, and customer support, so no game developers were fired. At the beginning of this year, 1/4 of all France office employees were laid-off already and got their severance packages, while the rest of the employees affected by this move are expecting relocation somewhere else in Europe. A company spokesman corresponding with Bloomberg has said that "Over the past year we have been exploring how we might best integrate our capabilities across the business, enabling us to better leverage talent, expertise and scale as we adapt to the needs of a fast-paced, highly-competitive, digitally focused industry". This is quite a vague answer the spokesman gave; however, it is the only information we have.

ASTRO Gaming Introduces the Call of Duty : Black Ops Cold War A10 Gaming Headset

ASTRO Gaming, the leader in premium video gaming equipment, today introduced the ASTRO Gaming Call of Duty : Black Ops: Cold War A10 Headset. ASTRO Gaming is the Official Headset licensee of Call of Duty and has been a long time official collaborator of Call of Duty, bringing licensed headsets and accessories to gamers around the world. The new ASTRO Gaming Call of Duty : Black Ops Cold War A10 Headset joins the ASTRO A40 TR, Speakers tags, and A40 TR Mod Kits already on the market today.

"ASTRO has been a key collaborator of Call of Duty esports such as Call of Duty Champs, and the Call of Duty League," said Daniel Siegel, VP of Licensing for Activision. "We're excited to continue our partnership with ASTRO as the Official Headset licensee of Call of Duty. With this latest headset, our fans are sure to get the best audio experience while playing Call of Duty : Black Ops Cold War."

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 Available Worldwide Now

Activision today announced the worldwide launch of its much-anticipated Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2, a remaster of the first two successful titles in the iconic, billion-dollar Tony Hawk video game franchise. In one game package, players will experience all the levels, tricks, and pro-skater characters from the original blockbuster hits from 1999 and 2000, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater and Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2, fully remastered in 4K resolution and bolstered with new ways to play, new pro-skaters to choose from and new music. In addition, the game includes features that allow players to customize their own skate parks and outfits and share them with friends.

"I'm thankful for the quality and care that Activision and Vicarious Visions have put into the remaster to revive the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series in the best way possible," said Tony Hawk. "For years, fans have asked me about bringing these games back, and I'm proud to say that we finally have a game that delivers on the expectations that nostalgic fans want, while inspiring a new generation to pick up a controller, and perhaps even a real skateboard."

Activision Announces Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War

Shortly after a Doritos-sourced leak on the next installment in the Call of Duty franchise, Activision has now officially confirmed the future of the Call of duty franchise. The next installment, Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War, is being hailed as inspired by historical events. And if the title is anything to go by, players can apparently expect to take part in a web of black ops hat are, at the very least, placed somewhere alongside the historical years between 1947 (the beginning of the Truman doctrine) and the USSR's dissolution in 1991 (quick historical fact: the USSR's ultimate dissolution occurred with as much pomp and circumstance as pen to paper, with the signing of the Commonwealth of Independent States at the Belovezhskaya Pushcha, in Belarus).

It remains to be seen what - if any - changes to the Call of Duty formula this title will bring. It's being developed by Treyarch, one of Activision's three development studios tasked with bringing the Call of Duty franchise to market yearly, with a three-year development cycle. Raven Software is collaborating with the studio, and we know the title will see integration with Call of Duty Warzone: it's likely Warzone will become a Battle Royale companion to all future Call of Duty titles, added to and updated with the latest installments. Watch the announcement video after the break.

Activision Blizzard Announces Record Second-Quarter 2020 Financial Results

Activision Blizzard, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) today announced record second-quarter 2020 results. "Our mission to connect and engage the world through epic entertainment has never been more meaningful," said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. "Our 400 million players continue to experience fun, joy and accomplishment through our games. Our record engagement resulted in greater revenue and earnings per share than previously forecast. While economic uncertainty could have an impact on our near-term results, the initiatives that drove our growth for the first half of the year should also provide the foundation for long-term growth."

For the quarter ended June 30, 2020, Activision Blizzard's net revenues presented in accordance with GAAP were $1.93 billion, as compared with $1.40 billion for the second quarter of 2019. GAAP net revenues from digital channels were $1.59 billion, as compared with $1.09 billion for the second quarter of 2019. GAAP operating margin was 39%. GAAP earnings per diluted share were $0.75, as compared with $0.43 for the second quarter of 2019.

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 Adds Star-Studded List of Pro Skaters to Remaster

The genre-defining Tony Hawk's Pro Skater franchise made its mark on videogames in the '90s touting the top names in skateboarding at the time. With the launch of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 on September 4, 2020, the legacy continues with some of the most preeminent pro skaters in the world today -- Nyjah Huston, Leo Baker, Leticia Bufoni, Aori Nishimura, Lizzie Armanto, Shane O'Neill, Riley Hawk and Tyshawn Jones -- joining the lineup of OGs in the remaster.

"Modern-day skateboarding originated from a generation of skaters who grew up playing the original Tony Hawk's Pro Skater games," said Michelle Bresaw, Vice President of Product Management and Marketing at Activision. "The world-class pro skaters we're adding to this remaster took the tricks and combos from the videogame and made them possible in real life. We're proud that the remaster will represent the skate culture landscape today with a diverse roster of skaters that will appeal to any gamer."

Activision Announces Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time

Bandicoots get ready fur it, Crash is moving 4-ward into 2020 with a brand-new game that's built from the ground up and "It's About Time." No, literally! Activision Blizzard, Inc., and developer Toys for Bob, are giving fans the true sequel to the original trilogy with Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time. Our lovingly absurd marsupials are back and putting a fresh spin, jump and wump on conflicts of cosmic proportions, discovering expansive new worlds, unexpected allies, larger-than-life boss battles and powerful new Quantum Masks that must be united to restore order to the multiverse. Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time will be available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 4 Pro, Xbox One and Xbox One X on October 2, 2020. Pre-orders are available now.
Bandicoot 4: Its About Time Bandicoot 4: Its About Time Bandicoot 4: Its About Time

AT&T Looking to Sell Warner Bros. Gaming Division

According to a recent report from CNBC AT&T is considering selling the Warner Bros. gaming division for about 4 billion dollars as it seeks to divest assets with total debts nearing 200 billion dollars. Interested parties include Take-Two Interactive, Electronic Arts, and Activision Blizzard according to Industry Insiders. Most Warner Bros. Interactive games are based on Warner-owned intellectual property, such as "Harry Potter," "Game of Thrones" and "The Lego Movie." in addition to several separate franchises such as "Mortal Kombat" and "Scribblenauts". Any deal will likely involve a commercial licensing agreement with AT&T where they can continue to receive revenue from its IP.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Announced as the 2020 Dose of CoD

The end cannot be nigh as long as Activision is able to put out a Call of Duty title for the year, come war, famine, pestilence, or death. The 2020 release of CoD will be reportedly titled "Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War," signaling a game set in the era of the original Black Ops. The name first appeared on Tuesday when a an anonymous tipster tweeted it, and Eurogamer later corroborated it. If 2019's Modern Warfare is any indication, Black Ops Cold War could be a retelling of the original Black Ops storyline, away from the future-warfare theme picked up by the two most recent Black Ops titles. Activision has reportedly dropped many hints of the Cold War setting in recent content additions to Warzone.

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2, Remastered From Ramp to Rail on September 4

The videogame that transformed the skateboarding world is back! The original birdman Tony Hawk, and Vicarious Visions, the studio that reinvigorated Crash with the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, have teamed up to bring fans remastered versions of the first two badass games in the critically acclaimed Tony Hawk franchise -- Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2. To provide players with breathtaking gameplay experiences, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 will blend all the original levels, pro-skaters, old-school tricks and more that gamers remember from the '90s and '2000s with new, beautifully recreated levels. This faithful remaster will also include blockbuster songs from the original franchise. Dropping in on September 4, 2020, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 will return remastered in one awesome package for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 4 Pro, the family of Xbox One devices from Microsoft, including the Xbox One X, and on PC through the Epic platform.

"The original Tony Hawk's Pro Skater series is a big factor in the evolution of modern skateboarding tricks and inspiring many of the pro skaters you know and love today," said Tony Hawk. "I'm excited to help inspire a new generation of skateboarders and gamers - and existing fans - to grow the sport even further."

Activision Blizzard Announces Strong First-quarter 2020 Financial Results

Activision Blizzard, Inc. today announced first-quarter 2020 results. "Our goal to connect the world through epic entertainment is more important to our players than ever before," said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. "We delivered strong financial results for the first quarter, and are raising our full year outlook. I have been awestruck by the strength of our employees and their families during this difficult time. Whether managing healthcare or childcare, performing public service or community service, our teams around the world have shown ingenuity and resilience. In the face of so many difficulties, our employees have made certain that the joy, the engagement, and the benefits of gaming remain an effective way to help keep our 400 million players around the world connected and safe."

For the quarter ended March 31, 2020, Activision Blizzard's net revenues presented in accordance with GAAP were $1.79 billion, as compared with $1.83 billion for the first quarter of 2019. GAAP net revenues from digital channels were $1.44 billion, as compared with $1.39 billion for the first quarter of 2019. GAAP operating margin was 34%. GAAP earnings per diluted share were $0.65, as compared with $0.58 for the first quarter of 2019.

NVIDIA GeForce Now Loses More Publishers, Xbox Game Studios and WB Games Wave Goodbye

NVIDIA's GeForce Now game streaming service has been a bit of a hit and miss lately, with some of the bigger publishers like Activision-Blizzard, Bethesda, and 2K games revoking availability of their digital game libraries on NVIDIA's service. Possible reasons for those events were unknown and the platform did suffer from it. Some speculations were that the publishers were going to switch their preferred online streaming service platform or build their own. So far it is still a mystery. However, it seems like there is no end to the pain, as some very big publishers decided to revoke their digital libraries as well.

Big names like Microsoft Xbox Game Studios, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Codemasters, and Klei Entertainment have all decided to stop offering their games on the GeForce Now game streaming platform. This is very much a major disappointment and another big setback to the platform, as now you can not play any of the titles from these publishers. Titles from the games series like Halo, Gears of War, Forza, Dirt Rally, Batman and many more, are now not available. It remains to be seen if these publishers announce a move to another streaming service, so we have to wait.
NVIDIA GeForce Now

Activision Announces Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered

Activision today announced the reincarnation of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, called Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered. "Originally developed by Infinity Ward, and now remastered by Beenox, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered delivers the full story experience with stunning high-definition visuals and the latest audio advancements. Whether you lived it back in 2009 or have yet to play this iconic blockbuster campaign, this is an experience hailed by critics as one of the most memorable and incredible single-player story campaigns ever." - said Activision in their announcement blog post.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered is now available on the PlayStation 4, while support for the rest of the platforms will come on April 30th. Below you can check out the game trailer.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered

Activision's Call of Duty: Warzone is Launching Today

Activision yesterday announced that its next Call of Duty game, called Warzone, is launching today. At around 8 AM PST, owners of Modern Warfare will be able to experience the Warzone couple of hours before everyone, while the rest of the players will have to wait until noon PST to play. The game itself is a massive, free-to-play, battle royale style game that can fit 150 players in the single match and is cross-play enabled, meaning that folks with PCs can join forces with Xbox and PlayStation players. The download size of the game is going to be around 80-100 GB alone, so players will have to free up some space on their disks for that. Below you can watch the trailer and see how the game looks before it officially drops today.

Bethesda Removes Games from GeForce NOW Game Streaming Service

NVIDIA's GeForce NOW game-streaming service had been hit or miss lately depending on how you look at its current situation, given the fact that Activision-Blizzard removed its game catalog from the GeForce NOW service and the fact that CD Projekt RED announced that Cyberpunk 2077 will be present on the platform. Some moves like the one coming from Activision-Blizzard are taking a tole on the new game streaming platform, while others like the addition of Cyberpunk 2077 are giving the platform users hope to see it become a viable option.

To add to the pain, Bethesda Softworks, a maker of many popular titles such as the DOOM, Fallout, Wolfenstein, and The Elder Scrolls series, has decided to pull a big part of its game library from the NVIDIA GeForce NOW game streaming service. In another surprising turn of events, a part of NVIDIA staff announced that Bethesda Softworks will pull most of its games form the GeForce NOW platform, excluding Wolfenstein Youngblood, which will remain playable to give users a chance to experience it with "RTX on". We do not know why big publishers are pulling their game libraries form this platform, so we have to wait for more information in the future.

Activision Blizzard Pulls Out of NVIDIA GeForce Now Game Streaming Service

NVIDIA recently launched its GeForce Now game streaming service, where you could stream any game from your digital library on some capable hardware. However, it seems that the service is not receiving good acceptance from some game makers, specifically Activision Blizzard. In a surprising turn of events, Activision Blizzard has pulled out its entire game library from the GeForce Now game streaming service. Being a provider of many popular titles like Call of Duty series, Overwatch, World of Warcraft, etc. this makes a big blow to the GeForce Now service.

Underlying reasons for this move are unknown. Activision Blizzard has been a part of the GeForce Now Beta program, with its games being readily available. What made them pull out now, when the streaming service began operating just a few days ago, is the possibility that Activision Blizzard seeks more profits. Some speculations indicate that they are switching the streaming platforms or making their own. The sheer size of players utilizing Activision Blizzard games is astonishing, and if they decide to make their service, it could turn out to be very profitable.

Call of Duty Modern Warfare Rakes in $600 million on Opening Weekend

Activision's latest blockbuster in the Call of Duty franchise has been announced to have brought in something to the tune of $600 million to the company's coffers. That's a whole lot of money - but remember we're talking about an actual finished Call of Duty game that includes a single-player campaign. Yearly installments have proven to not do any harm to Call of Duty - it remains one of the biggest entertainment launches every year, which is part of the reason why Activision has three development studios constantly working on the franchise, with three-year development cycles for each title (this particular release was created by Infinity Ward). That's a big level of commitment, and it usually shows in the finished quality of the games.

The game has overtaken all previous releases in the franchise for this current generation of consoles (and PC). Reasons for that surely include the reference to one of the franchises most beloved entries, the homonymous Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and the return of Captain Price, but surely the presence of a single-player campaign and the absence of any microtransactions pulled their weight in this release success. If there were any doubts on Call of Duty keeping its momentum, they have to be postponed to next year's release.

U.S. Legislators Including AOC Come Down Hard on Activision-Blizzard on Blitzchung Ban

Three Congresspersons and two Senators, in a letter to Activision-Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick, came down hard on the company's decision to ban and withdraw prize winnings of Hong Kong gamer Ng Wai Chung aka "Blitzchung." In the letter, the legislators unleashed scathing criticism of the company's decision to place its market-access to China above its expectations as an American business to spread the core American values of freedom and liberty around the world. Among these legislators are Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Congressmen Mike Gallagher and Tom Malinowski; and Senators Marco Rubio and Ron Wyden.

"Your company benefits from China's growing market for e-sports, along with an investment from Tencent, one of China's largest technology firms. As you and your company are no doubt aware, the Chinese government uses the size and strength of its economy to suppress opinion with which it disagrees. Last week alone, the Chinese government targeted Apple for hosting an app to help peaceful demonstrators evade repression and the NBA because one team's general manager tweeted in support of Hong Kong protests," the letter reads.

NVIDIA Partners With Activision in Launching Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Bundles

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare's re-release will see the game supporting real-time raytracing, and given NVIDIA's current stand in the market as the only provider of hardware-accelerated raytracing capable GPUs, this partnership makes total sense. NVIDIA has announced that they will be bundling Call of Duty: Modern Warfare with select RTX series GPUs, which gives gamers on the fence towards buying an RTX graphics card one more reason to take the plunge.

The bundle is available for eligible GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, 2080, 2070 Super, 2070, 2060 Super and 2060 products, whether in discrete card or laptop/desktop pre-built form. The game will be taking advantage of ray tracing and adaptive shading, and will bring gamers back to Soap and Price's story.

Activision Blizzard Announces Second-Quarter 2019 Financial Results

Activision Blizzard, Inc. today announced second-quarter 2019 results. "Our second quarter results exceeded our prior outlook for both revenue and earnings per share," said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. "In the first half of 2019 we have prioritized investments in our key franchises and, beginning in the second half of this year our audiences will have a chance to see and experience the initial results of these efforts."

For the quarter ended June 30, 2019, Activision Blizzard's net revenues presented in accordance with GAAP were $1.40 billion, as compared with $1.64 billion for the second quarter of 2018. GAAP net revenues from digital channels were $1.09 billion. GAAP operating margin was 24%. GAAP earnings per diluted share were $0.43, as compared with $0.52 for the second quarter of 2018. For the quarter ended June 30, 2019, on a non-GAAP basis, Activision Blizzard's operating margin was 32% and earnings per diluted share were $0.53, as compared with $0.62 for the second quarter of 2018.

Console Makers, Publishers Agree to Disclose Loot Box Odds for "Ethical Surprise Mechanics"

We've been covering the loot box controversy for a while on TechPowerUp now. Independently of which side of the fence you're on - that loot boxes are akin to gambling and thus unethical in some of their implementations, or just cold to the entire issue - it's likely good news for everyone that these so-called "surprise mechanics", as they've been called, will now see their odds being disclosed by console makers and publishers.

Microsoft Paves the Way for Industry-Wide Adoption of Variable Rate Shading

Microsoft today via a devblog announced their push to make Variable Rate Shading an industry-wide adoption in the search of increased performance that can support the number of pixels and quality of those pixels in future games. The post starts with what is likely the foremost question on the mind of any discerning user that hears of a technique to improve performance: "does it degrade image quality?". And the answer, it seems, is a no: no discernible image quality differences between the Variable Rate Shading part of the image, and the fully rendered one. I'll give you the option to speak on your own perception, though: analyze the image below and cast your vote on the poll.

As resolution increases, so does the amount of work that any given GPU has to process to generate a single frame - and compare that to the amount of additional work that goes from rendering a 30 FPS, 1080p game to a 60 FPS, 4K one, and... It stands to reason that ways of squeezing the highest amount of performance from a given process are at a premium. Particularly in the console space, where cost concerns require the usage of more mainstream-equivalent hardware, which requires creative ways of bridging the desired image quality and the available rendering time for each frame.

Activision Blizzard Doubling Down on Diablo, Warcraft IPs Amidst Changing Market

The times have been rough for the Activision Blizzard juggernaut, as changing market conditions and lack of differentiated IP launches have led the company into a sort of stagnant position in the market - in both launches and revenue sources. The recent split from Destiny developer Bungie took out a bite from one of the company's additional streams of revenue amidst dwindling World of Warcraft subscriptions (after the usual spike post launch for Battle of Azeroth) and the lack of any new sources of income in the close future. This saw the company's stock valuation coming down, and was bookended by the recent layoff of some 8% total of the company's workforce (around 800 out of its 9,600 employees). Reports peg these as being mostly outside of the game development workforce, though, which could give traction to the report that the company is doubling down on IP-related development, instead of shying away from it - a sensible move, if you'll ask me.

Activision Blizzard COO Coddy Johnson reiterated Blizzard's fantastic IP reserves, and wants the company to achieve a higher cadence in content releases that follow the type of high-quality launches they achieve in their World of Warcraft expansions - but on other, more differentiated revenue sources. Johnson also reiterated more resources being put to work on the Diablo franchise, saying that "Diablo's development headcount will grow substantially", with "The teams are working on several projects for the franchise as well as the global launch of Diablo Immortal."

Activision-Blizzard Stock Valuation Falls 10% in Wake of Bungie Split

Whether Activision-Blizzard's split from Destiny and Destiny 2 developer Bungie was caused by an overzealous grip on Bungie's creative vision or not is something that will likely never be clarified. But one thing is for certain: in the stock market, it doesn't really matter how something happened, but really what the effects are of it happening. And Bungie splitting from Activision-Blizzard means that the industry behemoth now finds itself with one less IP under its belt, thus constraining its revenue sources to a couple of high-profile IPs. Less sources of income = less versatility and resilience to market fluctuations, and that is something Activision-Blizzard was immediately hit back for from investors.

The company's stock decreased by as much as 11% in the wake of the Bungie split, from a high of $51.35 down to a low of $45.19, as investors reduced their trust in the company's profit volume and momentum. It has since recovered, but is still some 9% down. Whether Activision actually expected this much of a fall or not only the company knows. It'll be interesting to see the company's next financial report, though.
Return to Keyword Browsing