New Call of Duty game hopes to fight franchise fatigue

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is the latest iteration of the bestselling first-person shooter games franchise.

The game goes on sale this week and features the performance capture talents of double Oscar winner Kevin Spacey.

The title is set 50 years in the future and allows gamers to wield a variety of futuristic weapons while in the employ of a private military contractor.

Advanced Warfare will be hoping to secure a lucrative piece of the Christmas market and its publisher Activision will be keeping a close eye on sales amid suggestions from some industry quarters that Call of Duty's popularity may have already peaked.

Several big budget titles have already been delayed until 2015, which could work in Activision's favour.

However the title still remains a risk for those behind it. Advanced Warfare sees American company Sledgehammer Games take over sole development of a Call of Duty game for the first time, and they will be keen to win over a community increasingly suffering from franchise fatigue.

But one analyst added that its fate has ramifications for the wider industry.

"The Call of Duty franchise has been a monster hit on the PlayStation and Xbox consoles for the past five-plus years," said Lewis Ward from the market intelligence firm IDC.

"It is one of the main reasons hard-core gamers pick up new hardware and invest more resources into their platform, buying headsets and other peripherals to get the most out of the experience.

"It's an e-sport type game, and there's a lot of work that goes into taking advantage of the best resolution, the fastest twitch [reaction time] possible, the server infrastructure - it's really a tent-pole title like a Hollywood blockbuster is during the summertime."

BBC Click's Marc Cieslak has a first review of the title.

More at and @BBCClick.