The blockbuster video game "Call of Duty: Black Ops" is continuing to break records, grossing more than $650 million worldwide during the first five days of sales.
The game easily surpassed the previous five-day record holder, last year's addition to the franchise, "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2." That game took in $550 million, according to "Call of Duty" publisher Activision Publishing.
The latest game now holds the medal for the largest entertainment launch ever, the best-selling video-game launch on Amazon.com and GameStop, and the most number of players in one day on Microsoft's Xbox Live online gaming network -- 2.6 million -- Activision said Thursday. All sales figures are for North America and the United Kingdom.
Despite the early performance of "Black Ops," Activision said it was still early in the holiday shopping season, but the company remained "cautiously optimistic" about sales.
Released Nov. 9, "Black Ops" brought in a record $360 million in sales during the first 24 hours. The previous record-holder, "Modern Warfare 2," racked up $310 million in day-one sales. Retailers in the first 24 hours sold 5.6 million copies and an unprecedented 12,000 retailers held midnight openings to meet demand from got-to-have-it-first fans.
"Call of Duty" is available for PCs and all the major video game consoles, including the Sony PlayStation 3, Microsoft Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii. The game, first released in October 2003, is also available on handheld consoles, the Apple iPhone and Research in Motion's BlackBerry.
The success of "Black Ops" is good news for the video game industry, since software sales help drive console revenue. In October, overall sales of the industry at physical retail stores were down 4% year over year, to $1.07 billion, which followed an 8% drop in September and a 10% decrease in August, according to The NPD Group. However, sales for the rest of the year are expected to improve, given the scheduled release of popular games along with "Black Ops" and the release of the Kinect and the Move, motion-sensing add-ons for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, respectively.