Hard core gamers are calling in sick today; tens of thousands of them were up late last night playing “Call of Duty: Black Ops II,” the new first-person shooter game from Activision Blizzard. This morning the video game company announced that the game “shattered pre-order records set by last year’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3,” saying it’s “on its way to a historic launch.”
That means we can expect even bigger numbers than last year’s game, which sold over $400 million worth of copies in its first day. We’ll see if it maintains that momentum and can hit $1 billion faster than Modern Warfare 3, which hit that milestone 16 days after launch. Analysts expect ‘Black Ops II’ to dominate holiday sales, as the franchise has since 2008; last holiday season it comprised 14 percent of game sales.