Activision Blizzard's often controversial CEO Bobby Kotick recently told Reuters at the Global Media Summit this tuesday, "We don't view the App Store as a really big opportunity for dedicated games." Kotick believes that the best path for growth in Activision's future is utilizing the community of franchises they currently control. World of Warcraft, the Call of Duty games, and other series have been massive cash cows for the company, likely making Call of Duty: Zombies [$4.99 / HD] seem like small potatoes in comparison. While the game has been near the top of the iTunes highest grossing lists since release, it's hard to imagine that's even comparable to the amount of money Activision rakes in on a daily basis from WoW subscriptions and console titles.

Kotick's stance is somewhat understandable, and predictable given the direction the company has taken lately, prioritizing sequels and expansions of reliable series over exploring new territory. It's still disappointing given the success that their current titles have seen on the App Store, as well as the success that similar large publishers such as EA and Gameloft have enjoyed. The up side to all this is that according to Bobby Kotick, the iPad may be an attractive platform for Activision in the future, but not quite yet. Given the sky-high adoption rates the iPad has seen, hopefully serious Activision iPad titles will be coming sooner rather than later.

[via Joystiq]

  • Hackmodford


    • Danno Bonano

      Agree. Of course here's the real scoop. Activision didn't spend a lot of potatoes on the CoD Zombie port. But they have made over $2m. They obviously don't want to have even more competitors moving the the iOS platform. However, two points:

      1) They are having their a$$es handed to them by Gameloft
      2) Who needs COD when others are willing to up the ante:

  • Toad In The Hole

    Bloody Hell Angry Kid is running Activision 😉

  • NeoTrunks

    Pretty much, he knows he can't get away with charging $60 for an iOS game.

  • Ryeley Kuykendall

    That guy looks like a tiny ass dweeb and makes up for it by pissing everyone off. What a douche.

    • Jrsygrl40

      Very intellignet lanuage you use. Bet it gets you far in life.

  • Waka flocka

    this dude looks like the joker without the makeup on in the pic above... i hate his smile..

  • afterlife

    At last, someone speaks the truth!! for everyone who trolls gameloft, you will now know the reason why they make clones!!

  • GreenEyedZeke

    Ahh, Bobby Kotick. He's like a sleazy used car salesman who got really lucky and is heading up a major company. He makes me yearn for a second 1984-style games industry crash just so we can flush him down the toilet.

    • powersurge

      Problem is him and people like him are going to CAUSE another 84 crash by putting out crapware after crapware like Atari.

      • Silentcorp

        Yeah, because those CoD games hardly sell amiright?!!?

        The man is a boob, but he is a consumate businessman. He knows business and knows how to make money. Unfortunatley for gamers that direction lately is towards sequels and the annualization of game franchises.

        Can't really fault him, the last CoD outsold the one before that, and the one before that ect ect. It also seems like they've learned a valuable lesson with the Guitar Hero games, they burned that whole genre out releasing a new GH game every quarter.

      • spiffyone

        Eh, the industry has long been erring toward sequels of popular franchises, but this gen we've seen more of it due to higher dev costs and the penchant for business to minimize risks. For the most part gamers don't want to take risks with their money, and neither do devs, and the industry is worse off for it, IMHO.

      • Assassin

        he makes money but sometime must care for players , fucking Bobby

    • Bobby

      Yeah. I would never trust any grown man who still goes by "Bobby."

      Oh ... wait. Nevermind.

  • Sam

    Ahh man, I may never see Pro Skater 3 🙁

  • SkullScience

    I 100% agree with Activision, the ipod/iphone has become a terrrible games platform. It showed so much potential in mid 2008, when Apple started marketing the games aspect of the platform, but has failed spectacularly, mainly in part to the lack of quality control and utter amount of garbage released on the platform. Dedicated handheld gamers will go for DS and PSP every time. Sony and Nintendo have stuck by their original custom-base since 2004 and not averaged a machine upgrade every 6 months. Until Apple treats its gaming consumer seriously, the gaming world will not treat Apple seriously!! A missed opportunity?

    • Anonymous

      I understand and respect your opinion, but sales statistics don't exactly add up with your assessment of "failed spectacularly". However, I do agree with you on some points.

      You know what is funny tho? As an owner of a PSP and DS, I haven't touched them since about 07.

    • Zsoi

      This. I remember way back earlier last year when Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars first came out. It looked like iOS gaming was finally getting somewhere. And for a second it did: titles like Chaos Rings made me go crazy about iOS gaming for the best of half a year.

      Now look at where we are heading. After the epic reveal of Epic Citadel, we are stuck with a graphically stunning but gaming-handicapped on rail Fruit Ninja game. I've went back to playing console games (a game that has been out roughly half a year is around 30 bucks. 3 times the price of the highest quality iphone title, but I surely prefer games like Dragon Age: Origins over Chaos Rings any day).

      I still haunt this site for good news to come out (FF tactics anyone?). But no dice.

      • spiffyone

        Well, that's the problem: you expect a mobile platform with games geared to a mobile audience to satisfy your desire for games that are like those you'd find on a portable game system. They're two different markets. The platform, the consumer base, etc. are geared more toward "quick burst play" offerings than "deeper" offerings found on portable game systems.

      • Zsoi

        Yes I understand that. It's just during that one time period, we were led to believe differently. GTA was like a sort of branching point. The iOS showed it's capable of handling longer sit down games. But I suppose to marketing and production factors, we are now heading toward more of the 'quick bursts' you talk about.

        I'm not trying to come off as an iOS hater. I'm just expressing my disappointment with the direction iOS gaming is heading.

      • Silentcorp

        The platform is still in its infancy, kinda difficult to nail it down to a single type of "gamer". Considering games like CoD:Zombies sold at $9.99 and continues to be on the top lists, I'm thinking there is a large enough player base for slightly more "hard core" games as well.

        The hardware can handle it, thats for sure!

      • Akira01

        Two different market ?
        Are you sure.
        I WAS a PSP gamer, and a DS gamer. Since 2007 i haven't touch these platforms...
        So what...
        Modern combat 2 is better than Cod for DS, Aralon seems like a big RGP, Galaxy of fire 2 is a blast, and so on...
        Today there are 4 big games/year for the PSP.
        you have got 50 good games/year for iPhone...and 1 or 2 big games/year...
        Activision ? Cod 1, 2....20000 ?
        Guitar Heroes 1,2.....20000 ?
        and so ?
        No creativity, no news games...nothing...
        I'm a gamer and i think a REAL gamer would prefer to play something really new as Galactic Keep Dice, Sword and Sorcery and so on...the game is on iPhone today, all the other are just same things after same things

  • arr4ws

    dont worry... time will make Kotick go away..

  • Adams Immersive

    Eventually they’ll want their titles on iOS, if for no other reason than as a “me too” publicity effort to draw fresh attention to their cash cows on other platforms. (When that day comes, let’s hope it brings more than “me too” game quality!)

    • Noah


  • blakespot

    Early Activision alum Garry Kitchen (and business partner David Crane ('Pitfall')) feel rather differently.

  • 3faced

    hahahahahaha mr. kotick and his mouth haven't learned their lesson.
    kudos for being able to alienate yet another set of gamers, bobby with your well thought-out statements.
    roll on, douche-train, roll on.

  • Ahiru Nakamura

    his loss and our loss... a big fail...

    • Scott Colbert

      Not a loss at all. If I want a steak I'll go to a good restaurant and not settle for a McRib from McDonald's (though they are damn tasty). Their games will be available, you just have to use the platform that works best for them. Not everything will work well on an iDevice. And not everything should be dumbed down so it can work on one.

      • andrzej raczynski

        just had one of those mcrib things from mcdonals (first time ever) on a car stop during a long car trip.

        what a worthless POS. i think i enjoyed spam more.

      • Ahiru Nakamura

        it is a loss, whether only a single game from them could have been a big hit on idevices, we won't have the chance to have it on the go.

        of course you can sit at a fancy restaurant and have whatever you like. but also would be nice, in those rush days you need to stop by a drive-thru to get the same, even though not-as-fancy-or-tasteful whatever you like.

        and also, i'm not whining like "noooooo...", just stating that, heck, even EA sells big time on consoles AND the iOS, they (i don't mean CoD franchise-only) could get a share of the market as well. EA is doing it, Gameloft, Sega and whatnot.

        rephrasing my statement, they want it that way, it's their loss - cause we know games would sell well in the appstore. it's our loss, generally speaking, that are (could have been) games (either new ones or ports) that we won't be playing in our idevices.

  • nizy

    Much of the original article is about Facebook, iPhone and the free to play market. It reads to me like that was what he was referring to more than anything, but I guess this makes a better headline? Eli, why didn't you at least mention the other things he was talking about?

  • Scott Colbert

    Like him or not, and I don't, he has a point, depending on his definition of dedicated games. If it's in reference to games like SC or Warcraft (the RTS not MMO), then he's right. I'm not going to sit and play SC on my iphone for a couple of hours at a time like I would on my PC. It would make no sense from a business stand point to dole out resources for a platform like iDevices. Even if there as many iPads as iTouches, the amount they could make would still be dwarfed by revenues from WoW alone.

    I hate agreeing with a d-bag, but he's right.

  • ImNoSuperMan

    I regret purchasing CoD:Zombies now. I never really liked the game (extremely low content compared to other FPS in appstore) but never regretted buying it either coz I thought my 10 bucks will contribute in Activision taking the platform seriously. But if thats what they think about it, I'll think twice before wasting my money on Activision games from now on.

  • Guest

    Who needs activision when gameloft copies all of thier games anyways.

  • Itscalledinception

    The next time someone complains about Gameloft's clones of big titles, give them a slap and make them read this article.

  • Anonymous

    Interstate 76' Noooooooo!

  • Canton1125

    Yeah because a bunch of seven year olds on the ds are a much better market for m rated games. ...I also think the graphic capabilities of the ds make it an even better choice over the iphone/ipod 4's retina display

  • Anonymous

    From a moneymaking point of view (and of course Activision cares about nothing but making money), it is a bit disheartening to see how easily it is to pirate games on iOS, and how many people do it. This is compared to consoles, which are considerably more difficult (I have no idea if someone could even port a MMO like WOW, so I'll abstain from there). Until Jobs does something to stop the rampant piracy rates, many developers won't see it as worth the time and cost to develop.

  • Videogamer

    I don't belive it wil get anny colder... said the tyrano. Bye bye, activision. Who needs you, since gameloft.

  • Anonymous

    Said it many times: HATE Activision. Oh yeah, they make such smart biz decisions, I mean, look how increasingly successful Tony Hawk became. Plus, unlike many gaming companies, politically they're on the opposite end (well, the CEO at least). I won't go there, but lets just say - the ultimate in greed. I don't live for Call of Duty, so not even in the least bit dissapointed.

  • ItsCalledInception
  • ItsCalledInception
  • vimy

    activision is great,
    admit it gamers, they rock

    there big honcho is like every other MBA,
    probably never worked an honest job his hole life, just went from one senior management post to another,
    he understands only statistics and graphhs and he uses those statistics to express informed decisions on how to maximize profits.

    dont take it personaly kids, the real brains at activison, like all similar company's, care very much, about gaming and there passion is what will bring great titles to the appstore. Like Carmack and his efforts, love it or hate it.

    Please, never take an MBA seriously, they are just clones without imagination.
    Games are made by artist's

    • nop

      Ya there's a reason that not too long ago back in the day game companies often didn't survive past their debut title... the artists were trying to run the companies themselves...

      Indie games are great, but if it wasn't for the MBAs you simply wouldn't be seeing the blockbuster hits that get dropped today. They have their place in the process and it's an important one.

      But please do go on so I can continue to laugh about how you don't understand that. Those dang statistics and graphs!

      • vimy

        MBA are not responsible bussiness men, they are definitly not thye people who brought anything artistic to fruition

        there the monkeys who come and start work, usually at the top, and take very succesfrul business and make them models of inefficency and corruption.
        Not just gameing but all industries are collapsing arround there incompetances

        I have nothing against visionaries,
        but I find that we as a society are wasting our talent pools encouraging every tom dick and harry into what is truely the greatest waste of ressource and the number one reason why China and India are slowly kicking our ass into the third world.

        In this case, some idiot sitting at desk collecting money other people made and slowly poising activison from the inside, may not realise it, but the app store is a very low budget, low overhead, low cost place to develope ideas and go into new directions.

        its cost very little to make a tittle for iphone
        no signficant advertising needed
        no manufacturing of dvd cases etc,

        and a good title can sell millions of copies,

        at 1 to 2 $ a pop, I doubt ID is complaining about the cash they made off of RAGE
        they also tested the market for a style and got tons of free feedback
        not stuff you can easily put on a graph thats why it took an artist to think about how to develop the campaign and real businessmen to get it useful

        Thats not to say MBA are all incompetant,
        Its there education which is irrelevant, not necesarily the person. Has a tendancy to creat braggarts and loud mouths, (no I am not an MBA, but I am still a loud mouth), with no actual business experience, or produict knoweledge beyong what statistic can tell them.

      • paj

        i have to agree, he's just another idiot in a suit
        people like him = Enron, AIG, FDannymay etc, they are there like vultures to pick the bones of anyone and anything dumb enough to hire them.

        Blizzard made it to the top by being inventive and never letting anything out before it was as near to perfect as possible. They became hudge because of it.
        Then they became corporate

        Hired a bunch of marketing idoiots

        Now there caught reliving there past in an endless loop of sequels,
        were already bored.

        soon they will be gone. it will be replaced replaced by a new upstart with a vision, that itself eventually will go corp and die.

  • Peepar

    We don't need them... Plenty of good companies out there! MWF2 sucks

  • Ken Carpenter

    This guy reminds me of the big record labels back when MP3s were coming out. They fought to keep music from going online, all the while oblivious to the fact that the fight was already over.

    Similarly, the App Store has forever changed the way games will be bought and sold, but people like Kotick are too busy milking their cash cows to understand or react to the changes going on around them.

    As the head of such a major company in the games industry it's unfortunate that Mr. Kotik does not have more vision and awareness.

  • Anonymous

    Bobby Kotick is the Adolf Hitler of gaming, he's made Blizzard greedy, he has ruined the Call of Duty franchise, all he cares about is money and sooner or later it's gonna bite him back in the ass.

  • Dahak

    Honestly, I don't care that Activision won't be developing dedicated games for iOS; most of their post 80s titles have little meaning or interest to me anyway. I just hope they get off their collective asses and start releasing their Atari 2600 catalog on the iPhone - that was when the company was actually creative.

  • Kdkfjdfkj

    If Activision don't wake up soon ,they'll be dead as company. CEO get a live!!!

  • Bob

    comes out March 7th 2011