Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is one of the most anticipated and attention-grabbing releases that the longstanding shooter franchise has put out in some time. With there being a relative lull in the series since the release of 2019’s Modern Warfareit is clear that fans were more than eager to step back into the world of the ambitious new franchise reboot.
However, it remains that a lot of the discourse surrounding Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 prior to its launch was marred by Microsoft’s massive acquisition of Activision Blizzard, the parent company of the franchise. Most of this negativity came from PlayStation, with the company fearing that it may lose platform access to the mega franchise. With this in mind, the huge level of financial success that MW2 is already enjoying is a surefire indicator that the current business model of COD is here to stay.
The Successful Launch of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 recently launched on October 28, with a massive amount of predictable hype surrounding the long-awaited title. In what was quite a unique launch roadmap for the franchise, pre-ordering players had already experienced a closed beta for the game prior to launch, as well as receiving full early access to MW2’s expansive campaign.
This new approach to call of duty launches is likely here to stay, given how the closed beta for MW2 was the most successful beta in the series’ history. With fans already getting their campaign experience out of the way before the full launch of Modern Warfare 2’s multiplayer, the level of popularity that the game has already received in its early life cycle is truly unprecedented, even for the call of duty franchise.
With sales for Modern Warfare 2 outpacing its predecessor Vanguard byover 40%, Modern Warfare 2 has already surpasses the benchmark of $1 billion in sales, the fastest release to do so in the franchise’s long history. Considering this massive level of success, many industry concerns surrounding the future of the franchise have surely been laid to rest, especially from the view of Sony and PlayStation.
PlayStation’s Worries Surrounding Call of Duty
Back in January, Microsoft precipitated a groundbreaking development within the gaming industry when it announced its intentions to purchase massive development studio Activision Blizzard in a record-breaking deal worth up to $68.7 billion. While this deal has still not yet been officially finalized, it is largely expected by many to be fully confirmed at some point in the near future.
With this purchase, Microsoft’s growing collection of IPs was bolstered even further, with the likes of Overwatch, Diabloand Warcraft now falling under the company name. However, the largest acquisition from this deal undoubtedly comes from Activision’s call of duty franchise, which is one of the largest and most consistent franchise’s in all of gaming.
Perhaps understandably, this large-scale acquisition set ruptures through the industry, with Microsoft’s direct competitors being outraged at the level of spending power that the company was exerting. The most vocal of these concerns were voiced by PlayStation executive Jim Ryan, who even spoke to regulators about the potential harm this deal could cause to the standards of industry competition, as well as the possibility of PS being strong-armed out of key console franchises such as COD.
However, given the record-breaking franchise success of the recent Modern Warfare 2, it appears that PlayStation’s prayers may have been answered. With the current formula of multi-console and multi-platform releases for call of duty still proving to be a huge financial success, it would be economically unviable for Microsoft to essentially cut the player base of its largest IP in half, given the huge economic loss that this would surely bring about for the company. While it still remains to be seen how Microsoft will navigate the call of duty franchise in the near future, Modern Warfare 2’s launch may be a huge saving grace for Sony and PlayStation.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is available now for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.
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