Following the release of Activision Blizzard’s successful Q2 results, the company held an earnings call where they were asked if they saw any opportunities to remaster nostalgic titles, like they did with Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy.
The question was answered by Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg, who admitted that Crash Bandicoot has surpassed all of their expectations (it was the biggest game in June 2017), they’re considering remastering other titles, and they’re also thinking about bringing some of their older properties to new platforms:
So first, we knew that there was a passionate audience out there for Crash. Full disclosure, myself among them, but we had no idea… it’s hard to tell whether that’s a vocal minority or whether that’s a real mass audience until you put something out there. And Crash has surpassed all of our expectations by a pretty wide margin. And a couple of stats that underscore that point where it was the number one selling console game in June based on units, even though it was only available for two days during that month. And Sony reported this morning, well timed, I guess for this call, that Crash is the most downloaded game on the PlayStation Store in July.
So as to your broader question, I think this is just another example of us really listening to our communities and our fans and offering them great content where they want to engage which is one of our core strategies. So we think we have other great IP in our portfolio that we’re considering of course, but we’ve already… this isn’t new behavior for us. We’ve already shown the power of this with Modern Warfare Remastered last year with Zombies Chronicles that we talked about. Obviously, Crash Bandicoot is another great example.
So this is a strategy that clearly has our attention, and while there are no new announcements today, I think you can be confident that there will be more activity like this in the future with more great IP. The other opportunity beyond remastered is to look at some of our classic IP and ask whether or not it could be reborn on a new platform like what we’re going with Skylanders on mobile. So I think that our IP library is an asset that, when done right, can be very powerful.
Activision Blizzard also pointed that a remastered version of StarCraft is releasing this quarter.
Curious about the success of remasters throughout the industry, Games Industry reached out to the NPD, who revealed that 11% of dollar spending on physical PlayStation 4 and Xbox One games in the US life-to-date has come from ports/remasters.