If anyone has been thinking that we’ve deliberately avoided the Modern Warfare launch in favor of Battlefield 3 stuff, well, I wouldn’t blame them, but it really wasn’t on purpose. Let us demonstrate our impartiality by passing on this rather astonishing statistic: Modern Warfare 3 made more than three quarters of a billion dollars in its first five days. That’s definitely a record.
Comparisons to big movie launches are warranted, of course, and MW3 has the biggest beat by a factor of three or four. Note that MW3’s sales number include pre-orders, however, while most box office receipts are sold on the spot.
The game is sure to hit the billion-dollar mark soon, and will likely have done so faster than any game before it. If there’s anyone left who doubts the power of the mainstream games market, numbers like these should humble them.
At the same time, it must be acknowledged that the mega-franchises are really very few when compared with the number of titles released at large, but the same could be said for standout TV shows and movies. And after all, there’s plenty of pie to go around. It’s not like the people who buy MW3 can’t also buy Minecraft or Sword & Sworcery.
I’m not a Modern Warfare guy myself, but then again, I’m not a Rush Hour guy either, and I paid to see that and I enjoyed myself. MW3 may not elevate the genre, but every game like it elevates the market away from niche (where to be honest it hasn’t been for years and years) and further into everyday life.