GamesBeat

The year’s top PC game: StarCraft II sells 1.5M copies in two days

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty sold more than 1.5 million copies in its first 48 hours, making it the top-selling PC game of the year, according to Blizzard Entertainment.

The game was one of the most anticipated PC games ever, thanks in part to the 12-year gap between the original StarCraft and the second one, which went on sale last week. The original game sold more than 11 million copies and was played for years because of its addictive multiplayer gaming. The sci-fi title is a real-time strategy game, where you look down on the action from above and players make their moves simultaneously. It’s pretty simple as far as the game play goes. You build up your resources, defend your base, and attack your enemy.

The fun part is keeping track of all of the action. I’m in the midst of playing the single-player campaign of StarCraft II, and the production values are much higher. The art looks great and there are interesting story-based animations, called cinematics, in between each mission. There’s more choice in the new version of the game in terms of which mission you do, and Blizzard has made strides to make its Battle.net online game service better as well.

StarCraft II sold 1 million copies in its first 24 hours and another 500,000 units on its second day. At $60 per game, that’s about $90 million in retail sales. That’s not as big as sales for Blizzard’s World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King expansion pack, which sold 2.8 million units in its first 24 hours in 2008. But it is enough to make it the best-selling PC launch of 2010.

“We launched StarCraft II in 11 different languages and on 5 different continents because we wanted to make sure as many players as possible were able to log on and play on day one,” said Mike Morhaime, chief executive and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment, a division of Activision Blizzard. “We’re pleased that so many people around the world have already picked up a copy of the game, and we look forward to welcoming even more players to Battle.net in the weeks and months ahead.”

More than 8,000 stores opened at midnight throughout the world to launch the game. The launch should help out the third-quarter earnings of Activision Blizzard, which has remained one of the most profitable game companies in the industry because of its lock on Blizzard game franchises as well as the Call of Duty series.


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