Call of Duty loses 50 million players in a year

Call of Duty is bleeding players. According to Activision’s first 2022 investor report Users of the Call of Duty game released today have dropped dramatically throughout 2021 and 2022. Due to the popularity of Call of Duty: Warzone, the series reached 150 million monthly active users in 2021, but has steadily lost 50 million players in a year.

Now, Call of Duty has about 100 million players. That’s still a lot of people, but it’s the biggest drop the series has seen since Warzone’s 2020 release. Activision attributed the sharp drop to disappointing sales of Call of Duty: Pioneer and “lower engagement” with Warzone. Activision has previously mentioned Vanguard’s lower-than-usual sales, but considering Warzone is free-to-play and likely represents the lion’s share of Call of Duty players, it probably deserves a lot of the blame.

Players for Call of Duty are down year-over-year compared to Activision’s other divisions. (Image credit: Activision)

Warzone’s decline should not come as a surprise to the average Warzone player. The 50 million drop reflects a disappointing year for game updates, including boring seasonal additions, disruptive balance issues, and the release of new maps containing game-breaking bugs that couldn’t be fixed for weeks.