It's been rough for Activision Blizzard in recent months. The company's stock price tumbled in late 2018 as it announced a mobile game called Diablo Immortal that few fans of the company were excited about. Bungie then announced that it was parting ways with Activision Blizzard and that it would keep the rights to the Destiny franchise. Ultimately the company decided to fire its CFO after such a rocky year.
One of the biggest launches for Activision Blizzard in 2018 was the latest Call of Duty game, which for the first time lacked a single player campaign mode and added in a battle royale component instead. Many fans of the franchise, which has always had a single player campaign, were unhappy with the decision to ditch the campaign in favor of a purely online multiplayer experience. Activision Blizzard has announced that it is taking the Call of Duty franchise back to its roots for the 2019 game and that it will feature a campaign mode.
Word of the campaign mode came in the latest quarterly earnings call, in that call it was also confirmed that Activision Blizzard would be laying off about 8% of its entire workforce, about 800 people. The layoffs are said to be in non-game development portions of the business and come despite CEO Bobby Kotick saying that 2018 financial results were some of the best in company history.
New CFO Dennis Durkin noted that the 2019 entry for the CoD franchise would be "rooted in some of the franchise's most important history" but promised the game would also be a step forward for the franchise. Infinity Ward will develop the 2019 entry; the same studio made the original Call of Duty game, CoD 2, Infinite Warfare, Ghosts, and the Modern Warfare trilogy. While Activision says that CoD was the best selling console franchise in the world for 2018, it has admitted that sales for Black Ops 4, the current game in the franchise, were down year-over-year.