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New Call of Duty and Skylanders games coming this year

Activision confirms new titles from Infinity Ward and Toys For Bob

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

While some annual game franchises are taking the year off, Activision's Call of Duty and Skylanders series will get new entries in 2016, the publisher confirmed today.

This year's Call of Duty is being developed by Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Ghosts studio Infinity Ward, and will hit sometime during the fourth quarter. Activision Blizzard didn't provide many details on 2016's Call of Duty release, other than to say Infinity Ward's follow-up to last year's Black Ops 3 will be a "[n]ew innovative Call of Duty title." Infinity Ward is one of three studios leading development on the Call of Duty franchise.

Skylanders creator Toys for Bob will lead development on this year's entry in the toys-to-life game series. Last year's game, Skylanders SuperChargers, was developed by Vicarious Visions and Beenox. Activision said that SuperChargers missed sales expectations due to increased competition in the toys-to-life category and movement of casual gamers to mobile platforms.

Activision said it expects sales of 2016's Call of Duty and Skylanders games to be down this year. The publisher announced in January that the Call of Duty franchise has sold more than 250 million copies to date.

One Activision brand that won't be getting a proper sequel this year is Guitar Hero. After last year's Guitar Hero Live, Activision said it plans "to release new content but not another Guitar Hero console game this cycle."