Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Week of Gaming Madness 2009 Part One: Release date?! Pfft!

Ah yes the most anticipated game of 2009 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is coming real soon into our boxs of graphical intensity. After Infinity Ward's CoD 4: Modern Warfare was well received from fans of the series as well as people who play the game only because of its popularity, for sure the sequel will be much more popular and infamous than it's engaging predecessor. For a moment, the pre-release buzz of the sequel almost feels like 2004 all over again with Halo 2 with some interesting and controversial additions. It includes the abandonment of PC specific traits such as mods and dedicated servers, the playable airport massacre, and the F.A.G.S. debacle. One thing that stands out that just happened recently is the selling of Modern Warfare 2 before its November 10, 2009 street date.

According to news blogs such as Joystiq and Kotaku, GameStop who is promoting Modern Warfare 2 have stores in the east coast including New York already selling copies in advance to the public. Not to reviewers or whatever but to people who would have been waiting in line on Monday night to actually play the game. It was initially believed that Activision told specific Gamestop stores to sell the game according an employee of a Bowling, Ohio store. Activision later responded that no GameStop had any special permission to sell it in advance.

I feel that there is something missing from what just happened. Was the employee at GameStop lying about it and just selling it for the sake of so? Is Activision lying (and with what's up with Activision it doesn't seem that surprising, but I digress)?

Tens of thousands of people are already playing the game according to the leaderboards. I don't seem to understand why is that so when Activision is trying to follow the release date. Isn't there some sort of fashion of suspending or banning someone who tries to get online before the release date? It raises my suspicion...

For a couple of seconds, I thought of this situation as a leak of sorts but the problem is that it's really not. Leaks are more obvious in what has led to where this advance sale feels like a mystery. Leaks are not being sold to the public for oodles of cash they are just free but in a different context. There was a leak for Modern Warfare 2 and it was free to download but it came at a heavy price especially to the culprit but anyways...

I don't see the point of having a release date for the public to pay when you can just sell it days or probably weeks before. One problem with something like that is the lack of unity and respect for the product that was planned to be only coming out on that day. It might have worked for the Ohio store for probably short term economic reasons but that's stupid when the publisher seemed to want the game to be released on that day, not daty before. In the future we will have Blizzard release Diablo 3 suddenly into the digital distribution market as they finish the product. Another reason is that it's very anti-anticipation based where a majority of gamers who will wait will be jealous and then discouraged when they finally play it when other impatient gamers have already mastered the format.

I don't know what's happening with this hoopla and I am angry that it's very unfair but what can you do with a game that contains the largest pre-order sales at GameStop. What can we do? Nothing really. Still indeed horrible news.

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