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Activision Blizzard announces Google executive Daniel Alegre as new President and COO

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Activision Blizzard today announced the appointment of a new President and Chief Operating Officer for the company, Daniel Alegre, who will begin in April.

Alegre has been working as the head of retail and sales for Google for the last several years and has expanded Google’s reach to new markets during his time at the company. Alegre joins Activision Blizzard as the President and COO, replacing Coddy Johnson who served in that role for 12 years. Johnson will become a Special Advisor to the CEO.

Here’s Activision Blizzard’s announcement:

Alegre brings decades of global experience in entertainment and technology and a consistent record of driving revenue growth at Google. In his new role, Alegre will oversee the Activision Publishing, Blizzard Entertainment, and King Digital Entertainment businesses, reporting directly to Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick.

“I was deeply impressed by Daniel’s entrepreneurial drive and broad and deep experience in driving global growth across a variety of businesses in a rapidly changing industry,” said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. “Our greatest challenges are prioritizing the many opportunities we have and recruiting and retaining the talent needed to execute with focus and excellence. Daniel is a proven leader with a long track record of success doing both.”

Activision Blizzard is at an exciting point in its history,” said Alegre. “In addition to a deep library of owned and internationally beloved franchises, the company has tremendous talent that has built a culture committed to inspiration and creativity. More importantly, through thoughtful and creative games, it connects and engages over 400 million people around the world through epic entertainment. I look forward to helping players around the world connect through quality and immersive games.”

Most recently at Google, Alegre was President of Global Retail and Shopping, where he led initiatives to embed ecommerce across all Google product areas and helped diversify beyond advertising into the retail transactions business. Prior to that, he was President of the company’s Global and Strategic Partnerships function, working across all of Google’s core business lines to create and foster key strategic relationships and revenue acceleration with partners around the world. Alegre also ran Google’s Asia Pacific and Japan businesses as President based in Singapore and Tokyo where he opened the first operations in China, Southeast Asia and India, and expanded the footprint in Japan, Australia and Korea. Previously, he opened and ran the Latin American business for Google as company Vice President.

Upon Alegre’s arrival, the company’s current President and COO, Coddy Johnson, will continue as a Special Advisor to the CEO. Kotick continued, “During Coddy’s combined twelve years at Activision Blizzard, he has made extraordinary contributions to the continued success of the company. He has been a transformative leader, a trusted advisor, and an inspiration through his unwavering hard work and determination. We are incredibly thankful for the lasting impact Coddy has had on the Company and I am especially grateful for the impact he has had on me personally.”

Source: Activision PR

Activision

Activision granted patent that allows players to share Call of Duty loadouts

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Activision has been granted a patent that the team filed in 2019 in references to sharing loadouts in a multiplayer video game via online social networks. The patent was granted to Activision officially on November 17, 2020.

The inventor of the patent is: David Vonderhaar. The studio design director at Treyarch.

The patent was originally filed on September 16, 2019. It’s called “Systems and methods for customizing weapons and sharing customized weapons via social networks,” according to the US Patent Office.

The main premise of this patent is to build an engine that will allow “one or more other players of the multiplayer video game” to share their custom loadouts “via at least one social network such that the one or more other players can utilize the customized weapon configuration during a gameplay session.”

This patent details every single portion of the weapon that Call of Duty considers and tracks in implementing them into the game. It looks at “weapon performance attributes, weapon appearance attributes, weapon performance statistics, and player performance statistics.” 

The massive part of this patent is the sharing aspect, which is something that could change Call of Duty and add a new layer to the social experience of the franchise. 

As reported by PCGamer, this new patent details how players could control who can see and use their loadouts. The patent explains that loadouts can be shared. It talks about customized weapon configuration and details how they can dictate the share controls. 

“A player may further specify that he or she wishes to make a customized weapon configuration available for gameplay by one or more other players. In some implementations, a user may specify that a customized weapon configuration and/or some or all of the foregoing information be made available to all players, or a subset of players including, but not limited to, friends (or followers), or team members, or other groups of players.”

Another massive part of the patent is about how players can share the loadouts. In detail, the patent describes a new engine that goes in depth to allow players to share loadouts on social media platforms, within the game itself, and more. 

This new engine will “enable a player to share weapon configurations, information about weapon configurations, and/or gameplay statistics internally (or in-game) via, for example, an in-game social network or a game publisher-centric social network accessible in-game by game players. Additionally or alternatively [it will enable players to share] via one or more external social networks (e.g., Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Tumblr, etc.). In one implementation of the invention, the sharing engine may enable a player to transmit communications (e.g., email messages, text messages, or other electronic communications) that include hyperlinks or other selectable graphical user interface objects that enable recipients to access the shared information.”

This detailed patent also allows players to include messages and/or details when sharing said loadouts. Players can include “personalized text, graphics, pictures, audio, video, or other multimedia” as part of their share experience. 

Lastly, the new patent describes how players could potentially issue challenges when sharing their loadouts, and then allow others to complete or best those challenges. 

“The sharing engine may further enable a player to issue challenges to one or more other video game players to obtain or exceed certain player performance statistics, weapon usage statistics, or ratings, and/or achieve other objectives using a given weapon configuration.”

It says there’s a “Challenge Interface” that could be built allowing players to track and advance their challenges within the game’s engine. 

This would be a significant new portion to the social experience for Call of Duty, if implemented. Do note that is a patent, and patent’s don’t always end up in products immediately or in the near future. It could take some time for players to see a real in-game experience of this feature. But it’s quite interesting to see the level to which Activision can take the social experience of Call of Duty especially with Warzone and free to play experiences. 

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How to enable two factor authentication on your Call of Duty Account

Protect your account now!

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Activision has finally added an additional, much needed layer of security for your Call of Duty account.

For over a year, cross play has been the standard in Call of Duty. All of your Call of Duty purchases, rank & progression all are linked to your Activision account, or Call of Duty account. This is the account you use for crossplay and the account you’ll also be using in Black Ops Cold War to unify your rank with Warzone and Modern Warfare.

If you tend to use the same password across many accounts, or if you don’t want to risk the possibility of losing your Call of Duty account, take the following steps to protect your account.

  • 1. Go to this website to start.
  • 2. Select “Set Up Two-Factor Authentication”
  • 3. Log in to your Call of Duty account through your Activision login, or a linked PlayStation, Xbox, Steam or BattleNET account.
  • 4. Download the Google Authenticator for your phone, available on the App Store or Google Play Store. (Or use another Authentication app of your choice).
  • 5. Press the “+” icon on the top left of the Google Authenticator, and scan the QR code displayed on the page.
  • 6. Enter in the code in the Google Authenticator app to finalize the link.

After you’ve completed the process, be sure to login to your account one more time just to verify the process was correct.

Once this is done and activated, when you login to Activision or Call of Duty account, you will be asked to use the Google Authenticator passcode in addition to your regular password to login.

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Modern Warfare is now the best selling Call of Duty in its first year

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Activision Blizzard has announced it’s Q3 2020 Financial Results, which continue to exceed expectations as people move to gaming avenues during this time.

Activision has stated that generated over $1.2 billion in revenue from microtransactions across all of their titles, a new record for Q3.

The company also announced that Modern Warfare is now the best selling premium Call of Duty in its first year ever, with almost two-thirds coming digitally. Warzone also continues to see incredible success, on PC as well, with PC microtransaction sales four times higher this year.

“Our teams continue to execute our growth plans with excellence during incredibly challenging circumstances,” said Bobby Kotick, Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. “We are on a path to deliver sustained long-term growth across our fully-owned franchises. With confidence in our ability to continue to execute, we are raising our outlook for the year and remain enthusiastic for our growth prospects next year.”

Activision says that monthly active users for Modern Warfare & Warzone saw “three times as many” this year compared to Q3 2019.

Here’s the higlights from Activision on the quarter, which is quite impressive:

  • Call of Duty®: Modern Warfare® and Warzone™ saw more than three times as many MAUs as the prior title in the year-ago quarter. Console MAU grew strongly and PC MAUs grew over ten-fold year-over-year. Across PC and console combined, hours played were approximately seven times higher year-over-year.
  • We again saw substantial year-over-year growth in premium game sales as Warzone players chose to upgrade to the full Call of Duty experience. Modern Warfare first-year premium sales are the highest in Call of Duty’s history, with two-thirds of units sold digitally.
  • Call of Duty console and PC in-game net bookings were four times the year-ago level.
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War will release on November 13 into the largest and most engaged community in franchise history at the time of launch, and will support cross-platform play across PC, current-generation, and next-generation consoles. Anticipation for the release is high, with far more players engaged in the game’s public testing than for the year-ago title.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War arrives Nov. 13.

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