Activision announced that one of the most successful game launches in history has a community playing the game for hours every day, with a sequel already in the works.
The publisher revealed during the company’s third quarter conference on Tuesday that Destiny has more than 9.5 million registered users across all platforms. The average game time of current active players in Destiny is more than three hours a day, according to Activision. Developed by Bungie, the game released on Sept. 9 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 at $59.99.
The 9.5 million registered users doesn’t represent the game’s lifetime sales or those actively playing Destiny. An exact number of daily active players wasn’t given. During the company’s quarterly earnings call Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing, said the 9.5 million also included people with multiple identities. It wasn’t confirmed if that number combined users that have multiple PlayStation Network and Xbox Live accounts with those that played on both current and last generation platforms.
Hirshberg briefly announced during the conference call that the next game in the franchise is in development, although the company gave no release window for the sequel.
Up to three playable characters can be created on a Destiny game profile. Destiny features a co-op focus, with story missions, strikes, raids and daily challenges in an always-online environment. There’s also competitive player vs. player multiplayer modes.
The publisher claimed that Destiny is the biggest launch of a new IP in the history of video games and in the top ten game launches of all-time. Current sales figures weren’t provided. Destiny sold $325 million worldwide during its first five days of availability. In comparison Activision’s other major franchise Call of Duty sold more than $400 million with Modern Warfare 3 in November 2011 and more than $500 million with Black Ops 2 in November 2012 during the first 24 hours of availability for those games in just the U.S. and United Kingdom.
The company generated $1.17 billion in non-GAAP revenue for the quarter, an increase from $657 million at the same time last year. From a GAAP basis revenues increased from $691 to $753 million year-over-year. Activision’s third quarter ended Sept. 30.
Activision claimed Destiny took $500 million to launch, which included game development, marketing and various other costs. It’s the first multiplatform game from Bungie after developing the Halo franchise exclusively for Microsoft and Xbox consoles from November 2001 until the studio’s last release with Halo: Reach in November 2010. Bungie began a ten-year exclusivity deal with Activision in April 2010.
Bungie’s shooter also came bundled with a white PlayStation 4 console that is still currently available at various retailers. Those that buy the PS3 or Xbox 360 digital versions on the PlayStation Network or Xbox Live are eligible to receive a free digital copy of the PS4 or Xbox One version until Jan. 15, 2015.
Destiny’s first downloadable content expansion The Dark Below will release on Dec. 9 for $19.99. The Dark Below includes new story, strike and raid missions. There’s also new weapons, multiplayer stages and a raised level cap to 32. The game’s second expansion, House of Wolves, has not been given a release date. Both releases can be bought together for $35 with the game’s Expansion Pass.
The PlayStation versions of these two expansions will feature exclusive content that won’t be available on Xbox One or Xbox 360 until fall 2015 such as the strike mission “The Undying Mind” in The Dark Below, although the price for both releases is the same for Xbox players. The PlayStation version currently has the exclusive “Dust Palace” strike mission and multiplayer map “Exodus Blue.”
Hirshberg said that more expansions for Destiny will also be released.