Video game giant Activision announced the latest installment of the widely popular “Call of Duty” franchise — just hours before video game executives and critics met with President Trump to discuss the effect of violence in video games.
VentureBeat reports that “Call of Duty: Black Ops 4” will launch on PC, Playstation 4 and Xbox One on Oct. 15. The popular shooting franchise usually releases a game every year, with the games generating over $1 billion in revenue so far.
The news comes the same day Trump met with top executives in the video game industry, including Strauss Zelnick, the CEO of Rockstar Games, maker of the “Grand Theft Auto” series, and Robert Altman, the chairman and CEO of ZeniMax Media, which publishes popular games such as the “Fallout” series and the massively popular “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.”
But Trump has also invited several prominent critics of violence in video games to the meeting.
In the aftermath of last month’s mass shooting at a Florida high school, Trump said he was struck by the level of violence in modern video games. Trump cited the games his 11-year-old son, Barron Trump, plays last week during a meeting with lawmakers.
“I look at some of the things he’s watching, and I say, how is that possible?” Trump said.
Trump has linked violence in the media and society in the days following the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., that killed 17 people and wounded than a dozen others. The shooting reignited a national conversation on gun violence and school safety.
Dan Hewitt, a spokesman for the Entertainment Software Association, rejected Trump’s rhetoric about violence in the media, noting that mass shootings are a unique problem to the United States, while violent media is distributed worldwide.
“Like all Americans, we are deeply concerned about the level of gun violence in the United States,” Hewitt said, according to Reuters. “Video games are plainly not the issue: entertainment is distributed and consumed globally, but the U.S. has an exponentially higher level of gun violence than any other nation.”
Trump has linked video games and violence in society for years. In a 2012 tweet, he called on the industry to stop promoting violence, accusing video game executives of “creating monsters.”
“Video game violence & glorification must be stopped — it is creating monsters!” Trump wrote.