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Blizzard pulled in most of Activision's Q2 revenues

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

Blizzard games were the top earners for Activision's second quarter, outperforming core IPs like Call of Duty and King's popular mobile games.




The company's Blizzard games segment, which includes massively popular breadwinners like Overwatch, World of Warcraft, and Hearthstone, pulled in $556 million in net revenues in the second quarter period from April through June, up an incredible 175% year-over-year and accounting for 42% of Activision's total segment net revenues of $1.362 billion. Activision attributes these strong earnings to efficient monetization of the record engagement and MAU growth Blizzard saw during the quarter. Blizzard enjoyed the "biggest quarterly online player community in its history" with a record 46 million monthly active users (MAUs), up 38% year-over-year, with Overwatch and Hearthstone responsible for the bulk of this growth.


Blizzard helped drive Activision's record $1.631 billion in net revenues for the quarter, and significantly contributed to nearly $1 billion earned in microtransactions in the period. This performance directly reflects Blizzard's shift away from full game releases to digital content for 2017, and the developer helped Activision propel its predominantly digital revenues to new heights by pulling in strong live services revenue with new content updates and microtransactions across its slate of games.

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Activision earned 80% of Q2 revenues from digital

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

Major games-makers like Activision are pushing towards the digital landscape for stronger revenue growth via recurring monetization and direct consumer sales, and Activision has made big strides in its digital strategy.




Activision reported its second quarter financials for the fiscal year ended December 2017, which beat forecasts and pulled in a record $1.631 billion in net revenue. Digital online, which includes full game downloads and sales from all channels and platforms as well as monetization from DLC and add-ons, accounted for 80% of Activision's second quarter net revenues, or $1.309 billion. Not only is digital segment revenue up by 15% year-over-year, but the percentage share is up by 7%, as digital accounted for 73% in Q2'16.


Digital also had a tremendous impact on Activision's 2H'17 earnings, which includes revenue earned in the six-month period from January to June. Digital accounted for 80% of 2H'17 net revenues, or $2.694 billion, up a big 12% in total YoY percentage share and a tremendous 30.3% in year-over-yer revenues.


Most of these digital revenues were earned from live services such as expansions, DLC, add-ons, subscriptions and microtransactions. In fact, Activision earned 70% of its total quarterly net revenue from live services, or $1.150 billion.

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Live services make up 70% of Activision's Q2 earnings

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

Activision is arguably the king of monetization, and the company's recent earnings filings add more jewels to the company's crown.




Games industry giant Activision recently announced its second quarter earnings for the fiscal year ending December 2017, highlighting record quarterly earnings growth and MAUs. The reports underline the company's core digital revenue streams and give key insight on how Activision has managed to stay on top for so long with its massively lucrative monetization strategies.


As the games industry shifts towards the GaaS model (Games-as-a-Service), video games now have recurring revenue opportunities baked in via live services that facilitate online play mixed with in-game purchases via DLC, add-ons, and microtransactions. Activision is one of the major drivers to this new push, and the company makes most of its quarterly earnings by far from digital thanks to its profitable live services.


Activision makes quite a bit from its live services--in fact, the bulk of its earnings come from the segment. In the three-month period ended June 30, the company earned $1.150 billion--or 70% of its total second quarter net revenues--from live services, subscriptions, DLC, expansions, microtransactions, and licensing. This represents a 7.5% year-over-year increase from Q2'16.

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Battlegrounds hits 500,000 concurrent players on Steam

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds continues to take over the gaming world, with the game hitting yet another milestone: 500,000+ concurrent players on Steam.




If we consider that global FPS juggarnaut CS:GO sits at 'just' 511,768 concurrent players and a peak of 546,789 - while Battlegrounds reached 519,478 - PUBG's new peak. Dota 2 is still king with a huge 772,822 concurrent players and a peak of 774,396 - while #4 goes to H1Z1: King of the Kill with a peak of 141,789 players.


SteamSpy reports that over 6.2 million copies of Battlegrounds have been sold so far, and that's before the big July update was delayed until this week - another driver in players, I'm sure. There's also the cosmetic DLC upgrade coming, but hasn't been met with total positivity.

AMD Ryzen Threadripper early benchmarks released

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

AMD might have teased their Ryzen Threadripper CPUs last week, and after HotHardware released some synthetic results from their Alienware Area-51 gaming PC, LinusTechTips have released some - and by some, we mean a single gaming result from Threadripper.


LTT ran the Ryzen Threadripper up against an X299-based Core i9-7900X at stock clocks and a GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card, and ran Rise of the Tomb Raider in both DX11 and DX12 modes. The results, we have below:




According to these results, it looks like Ryzen Threadripper will handle gaming without a problem - but LTT didn't say what resolution they were running Rise of the Tomb Raider at, but it looks like 4K results to me. Seeing the X299 and Z270 systems at just a few FPS lower than the Threadripper system, and slightly ahead of the X370 system from AMD.




Linus also ran 3DMark with both Fire Strike Ultra and Time Spy benchmarks. X299 still pulls ahead significantly in the CPU test run of Time Spy, while it's pretty neck and neck for the Fire Strike and Time Spy runs.

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AMD Radeon RX Vega dual-GPU: liquid cooled, 600W

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Video Cards | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

AMD launched their new Radeon RX Vega graphics cards last week, and while we were introduced to the new Radeon RX Vega 64 and RX Vega 56, there was no news on a dual-GPU of any kind. Until now.




There are rumors from WCCFTech that ASUS is working on a new dual-GPU graphics card, since AMD approved AIB partners to tweak the designs of Vega to their liking. ASUS is looking to build a new beast with 2 x Vega 10 GPUs that would feature over 50 TFLOPs of compute performance, 25 TFLOPs of FP32 performance, and consume up to an insane 600W of power.


AMD might have gotten away with air-cooling on Radeon RX Vega, but liquid cooling is absolutely required on a dual-GPU of this size. Performance would be monstrous, easily beating everything NVIDIA has on the market, including the GTX 1080 Ti and TITAN Xp. Price wise, I think we'll see it at $1500 or so - given that Vega 64 is $499 and the liquid cooled version is $599. ASUS probably won't make many of them, as I'm sure they'll be a very limited edition card.


We had a world exclusive on the leaked benchmarks of Radeon RX Vega 56 graphics card, which beats the GTX 1070 by 10-15% in some of the most popular games on the market. The dual-GPU version of RX Vega on the other hand... oh boy, would it be a MONSTER.

Take-Two iterates Borderlands 3 tease for 2018

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

2K Games parent company Take-Two Interactive continues to tease a 2018-2019 release for Borderlands 3.




In its quarterly earnings call for fiscal Q1'18, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick once again teased Borderlands 3 may be a part of the company's upcoming fiscal year release slate. "Looking ahead to Fiscal Year 2019, we expect to deliver both record net sales and operating income led by the launches of Rockstar Games' Read Dead Redemption 2, and a highly anticipated new title from one of 2K's biggest franchises," Mr. Zelnick said during the call. The Borderlands series of games is the second most popular of 2K's biggest non-sports series, with the now-defunct BioShock series taking the top spot with 25 million lifetime sales.


Last April Gearbox Software confirmed Borderlands 3 is in development, and company CEO Randy Pitchford showcased in-engine footage of the game at GDC 2017. Mr. Pitchford also confirmed that Borderlands 3 will run on Unreal Engine 4 and will feature a number of new technologies.

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GTA Online just had its biggest quarter yet

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

Grand Theft Auto Online appears to be an unstoppable juggernaut, and Rockstar Games parent company Take-Two Interactive is making revenues hand-over-fist as a result.




In its fiscal Q3'18 earnings report, Take-Two Interactive announces that Grand Theft Auto Online has just enjoyed its biggest quarter yet. The massively lucrative online mode broke two records in the three-month period ended June 30: most earnings in a single quarter, and most monthly active users (MAUs), both of which were driven by massive engagement from new content updates like the Gunrunning DLC.


GTA Online contributed to Take-Two's quarterly performance across the board, from the $418.2 million in net revenues (up 34% YoY) earned during the period to the $348.3 million in net sales (up 28% YoY) gleaned in fiscal Q1'18. Bear in mind the company earned these revenues without releasing a new game, and 94% of earnings were from catalog titles. Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick confirms GTA Online was the single most largest contributor to the $171.468 million earned from recurring consumer spending during the period, which was boosted by a massive 71% year-over-year.


"Grand Theft Auto Online delivered its best quarter ever, substantially exceeding our net sales expectations and was once again the single-largest contributor to recurring consumer spending. Rockstar Games has continued to drive sustained engagement and growth in recurring consumer spending with the ongoing release of free additional content.

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Jump in to our 'Get Out' Blu-ray giveaway

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Contests & Giveaways | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

To celebrate the upcoming home video release of 'Get Out', we have fifteen Blu-rays to give away thanks to our friends at Universal Sony Home Entertainment.




Gripping, scary, witty and timely! When a young African-American man visits his white girlfriend's family estate, he becomes ensnared in a more sinister real reason for the invitation. Now that Chris and his girlfriend, Rose, have reached the meet-the-parents milestone of dating, she invites him for a weekend getaway upstate with Missy and Dean. At first, Chris reads the family's overly accommodating behavior as nervous attempts to deal with their daughter's interracial relationship, but as the weekend progresses, a series of increasingly disturbing discoveries lead him to a truth that he could have never imagined.


To go into the running to win a prize, post this article to your social media profiles and send your correct answer to the following question ( along with your postal address), to ben at TweakTown dot com before the competition closes on August 11:


Name the comedian director behind 'Get Out'.

Continue reading 'Jump in to our 'Get Out' Blu-ray giveaway' (full post)

Digital drives big quarterly earnings for Take-Two

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 6 days ago

Take-Two Interactive starts its new fiscal year with big earnings across the board thanks to Grand Theft Auto Online and NBA 2K.




Despite not releasing any major games during the three month period ended June 30, Take-Two Interactive has recorded impressive earnings from recurring consumer spending and purchases of its catalog titles slate. In its fiscal Q1'18 period the company pulled in a total of to $418.2 million in net revenues, up 34% year-over-year from fiscal Q1'17, driven by NBA 2K17, GTA Online and GTA V, WWE 2K17 and WWE SuperCard, and Mafia III. As we reported earlier, 82% of Take-Two's first quarter net revenue was made on consoles.


The Grand Theft Auto parent company pulled in $348.3 million in net sales during the quarter, up 28% year-over-year, with catalog making up 94% of net sales for the period. Operating income was up a huge 255.92% year-over-year to $60.276 million, versus the loss of $38.657 million from fiscal Q1'17.



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