This holiday season sees the release of numerous high-profile titles, and according to tracking firm Nielsen, Activision's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is the most wanted game of all.
Nielsen recently published its "Top 20 Games to Watch" and the Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer Games-developed shooter topped all others by a significant margin. According to Nielsen, 27 percent of respondents designated Modern Warfare 3 as one of the top five titles they intend to purchase during the 2011 holiday season.
The next two most coveted games of the season, based on Nielsen's data, are the recently released Gears of War 3 and Madden NFL 12. Both games found their way onto 19 percent of respondents' lists.
Just one title on the list--Dead Island--is a new intellectual property. All others are either sequels or extensions of existing franchises.
Other games making the list include forthcoming titles Assassin's Creed: Revelations (17 percent), Batman: Arkham City (15 percent), The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (14 percent), and Battlefield 3 (12 percent).
Nielsen's online survey of what it calls "active gamers," was conducted from August 21 to September 17 of this year. Supplemental information was provided by Nielsen company NM Incite, which mined more than 417 million online conversations about the top 20 games to determine the top factors for hype.
According to NM Incite, Modern Warfare 3 conversations tended to be centered on launch parties, changes to the game, a "darker mood," and the difference between the Hardened version and its standard counterpart. Gamers excited about Assassin's Creed: Revelations are interested in the game's multiplayer component. Further, based on the firm's findings, gamers enthusiastic about Batman: Arkham City are interested in finding out which villains they will face.
For more on the study and what drove the online conversations regarding games on the list, check out Nielsen's official blog.
Nielsen's Top 20 Games to Watch for Holiday 2011
(Title--Percent of players listing it among their top five)
1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3--27 percent
2. Gears of War 3--19 percent
3. Madden NFL 12--19 percent
4. Assassin's Creed: Revelations--17 percent
5. Batman: Arkham City--15 percent
6. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword--14 percent
7. Battlefield 3--12 percent
8. Just Dance 3--12 percent
9. NBA 2K12--9 percent
10. Need for Speed: The Run--9 percent
11. Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception--9 percent
12. Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games--8 percent
13. Lego Harry Potter: Years 5-7--8 percent
14. FIFA Soccer 12--8 percent
15. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim--8 percent
16. Dead Island--7 percent
17. Kinect Sports: Season 2--6 percent
18. Resistance 3--4 percent
19. Dance Central 2--4 percent
20. Deus Ex: Human Revolution--3 percent