If there’s one thing that Wedbush Morgan analysts want to see, it’s you paying to play Call of Duty: Black Ops. The securities and advisory firm recently reiterated their stance that Activision would indeed be initiating a second tier of services to the Call of Duty games. This second tier would be the monetization arm of the franchise and expects this to be offered as early as Q1 2011. So basically right now. Eric Hirshberg denied the claims earlier in December and the same consulting firm responded with a statement that accused the company of being irresponsible for and obligated to do what is best for the shareholders.
What they fail to realize is that Call of Duty is not a special snowflake that people simply cannot live without. I love Call of Duty as much as the next guy/gal but if they offered a premium service I would likely stop playing all together. There are alternatives to Call of Duty, with free multiplayer, and some may say better ones. A release of Battlefield 3 combined with a fee being charged for Call of Duty, just might give John Riccitiello the right ammo to take down the juggernaut when Battlefield releases later this year. ‘Second Tier’ or not.