Modern Warfare 3 preorders hit nearly 9 million - Analyst

Lazard Capital Markets' Atul Bagga says latest Call of Duty presales are almost three times those of Battlefield 3; Call of Duty: Elite now live.

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Even if EA doesn't expect its Battlefield franchise to unseat Call of Duty as the top-selling first-person shooter this year, the game still logged a solid start of 5 million units sold. Those opening-week sales were bolstered by preorders that exceeded 3 million units, according to EA. And according to Lazard Capital Markets analyst Atul Bagga, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3's preorders are already nearly three times those of EA's shooter.

It looks like Call of Duty will remain No. 1 for another year.
It looks like Call of Duty will remain No. 1 for another year.

Bagga's findings also indicated that Modern Warfare 3's preorders are tracking up 70 percent from 2009's Modern Warfare 2 and 55 percent from 2010's Black Ops during the same period of time prior to launch. The report was generated after checks at retail for the week ended November 4.

Lazard Capital Markets expects Modern Warfare 3 will sell more than 20 million units worldwide by the end of the year. By comparison, Activision said in August that lifetime-to-date, Modern Warfare 2 had sold 22 million units while Black Ops had shifted 25 million copies.

Modern Warfare 3 will launch tomorrow, November 8, on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, and PC. In the lead up to its launch, Activision has set live its new social platform, Call of Duty: Elite. The service has both a free and a paid component, with premium subscriptions running $50 for a year's worth of access. A premium Elite membership is included with the $100 Hardened edition of Modern Warfare 3.

Perks for the premium version of COD: Elite include access to all pieces of downloadable content released for the game. Premium Elite members will also be able to participate in competitions for prizes of both the real and virtual sort. Paid members can also level up clans and receive eight times more video-capture capacity.

For more information, check out GameSpot's previous coverage of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

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