Strum, fire, or fight, Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) keeps moving in the right direction.

The world's leading video game maker announced that its first-quarter results would top the original guidance it issued in February. Milking its juggernaut Guitar Hero, World of Warcraft, and Call of Duty franchises has been good to the software king.   

Activision Blizzard isn't revealing how far ahead of its projections it ultimately landed. The company has to leave something for the imagination until it officially reports next month. However, we can revisit the company's initial outlook for a potential sneak peek.

Activision Blizzard was expecting a profit of $0.08 a share on $860 million in revenue for the quarter that ended in March. (That's $0.03 a share on $550 million in revenue, on a non-GAAP basis.)

Despite the company's recent streak of blowing past Wall Street expectations, shareholders were only logical to be nervous. Activision's report came just days after rivals Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:ERTS) and THQ (NASDAQ:THQI) announced layoffs. Apparently, the coast is now clear.

The company has also gone public with one of the worst-kept secrets in China, confirming that NetEase.com (NASDAQ:NTES) will replace The9 (NASDAQ:NCTY) as its World of Warcraft license partner in China come June. 

Activision Blizzard isn't budging on its outlook for all of 2009. It's still too early to tell on that front, though the company is excited about a rich pipeline of upcoming titles, including more Guitar Hero installments and licensed games based on Marvel's (NYSE:MVL) Wolverine and News Corp.'s (NASDAQ:NWS) Ice Age movies.

With its stock fetching a little more than half of last summer's peak, Activision Blizzard is earning both the market's trust and investing dollars. Wall Street just hasn't figured that out yet.

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Electronic Arts, Marvel, and Activision are Stock Advisor recommendations. NetEase.com is a Rule Breakers selection. Try any of our newsletter services for 30 days with a free demo.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz wonders why his son always kicks his axe when they have a Guitar Hero face-off. Rick does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool's disclosure policy could beat "Jordan" in Expert mode if it had to.