Update: Call of Duty - Infinite Warfare Pre-Orders Are Incredibly Low

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Update: Call of Duty - Infinite Warfare Pre-Orders Are Incredibly Low


Update: We've received the following comment from an Activision spokersperson,

"These estimates are highly inaccurate and are not at all representative of actual retail data. We've announced that pre-orders started strong, and continue to be very positive. And we look forward to sharing new gameplay next week at E3."

As with any estimates, VGChartz may not always be accurate. The company is, however, relatively open with its methodology, so readers can learn about potential sources of error.


Original story:

Infinite Warfare has ten times less pre-orders than Black Ops 3 had the same time prior to launch.

The reaction to Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare has been very lukewarm, especially considering all the positive buzz around Battlefield 1. Those lukewarm reactions have turned into incredibly low pre-order sales, as VG Chartz reports Infinite Warfare has ten times less pre-orders than last year's Black Ops 3.

First, check out the pre-order numbers for Infinite Warfare, as of May 14th, 2016:
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image

Now, look at Black Ops 3's pre-order numbers as of May 16th, 2015:
image
image

As Black Ops 3 launched on November 6, 2015 and Infinite Warfare launches on November 4, 2016 these numbers are taken from the exact same point before each game's launch.

As you can see, even combined Xbox One and PS4 pre-orders for Infinite Warfare don't even come close to matching just the PS4 pre-orders of Black Ops 3. We can also see that this time around, the PS4 version is more popular than the Xbox One edition - possibly due to Sony securing a timed DLC deal.

People are very clearly voting with their wallets here. Thankfully, I'm so glad that this has happened. "Yearly Call of Duty" was something that simply had to stop, and it might as well be this year.

Source: VG Chartz

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I don't know whether this is backlash to Activision's desperate marketing, or the fact it's in the future[1], or whether people have finally realised that Infinity Ward have been a shell of a company for years now, but this is a good thing.

[1] Which I have nothing against but people really dislike it

I have no opinion on if the game is good or not, but I'm glad to finally see some pushback against the pre-order BS these companies have been pulling for years.

Its about time we saw Activision pay for its bullshit.

Isn't this because of the Modern-warfare remaster bullshit? Because if people are getting tired of yearly cod, the decline shouldn't be this drastic. Or the fact that the setting is too far forward in the future that they lost their main demographic?

Good. Maybe then CoD can actually go somewhere. Even Ubisoft, Ubisoft, gave Assassin's Creed a rest.

Kind of a shame, this is actually the first cod game I've seen previews for that has actually made me interested. It would be nice if this finally got activision to cut out the dlc bullshit.

Steven Bogos:
[b]combined[/i]

Is it bold, or italics, the world may never know. :p

YES, less pre-orders is a good thing! Irregardless of what game it is... Of course this is speaking as somebody who Kickstartered Planetary Annihilation and Star Citizen(back when it was a Kickstarter) so I may be a hypocrite or just slow to learn.

So, um, I won't have trouble getting a copy?

Mentioned this before, but this might be the first CoD I play since the WWII era. Because SPAAACE!

+1 faith in gamers restored.

thats hilarious. i bet activision didnt see this one coming. thinking that every COD title sold like hotcakes, they think they can get away with anything. looks like not this time or parents had enough of the same game every year to spend on their 8 year olds.

Ouch. The wave had to end eventually, Activision had to eventually push too far, and it looks like this may very well be the year. Throw in the fact that Battlefield 1 is coming out, and I'm pretty sure some executives are sweating bullets right now.

I'll still pick this one up on launch day because it looks like they've recaptured what makes the campaign fun for me, but this is the last time if I don't come away from this one going, "Whoo...okay, let's do that again." Ghosts damn near murdered the series for me, and Advance Warfare barely managed to keep the series alive. Black Ops III started out strong, but then it kind of fell apart (and once I learned what was really going on, I was annoyed to the point that I haven't touched the game since). So this is the last chance, and only because we're going into space and it looks like I'm part of an army again, not a one (or two-or-three man squad) killing machine. So tired of that. That's not why I play these games, guys.

Maybe... Just maybe...

Though in all fairness I actually dig the sci-fi motif that they're going for. What can I say, I like spaceships and shit.

Vigormortis:
Why? Why does it HAVE to stop?

Because it's an industry practice that's ultimately bad for the consumer and bad for the medium. If one of the market leaders is showing that the yearly release cycle fails we might actually see it stop being used and we hopefully won't see another case of what happened with Assassin's Creed.

As far as I'm concerned, the kiddies can have Battlefield 1[1]. It looks like yet another bland BF game with a thin veneer of WWI paint on top. Nothing I've seen or heard makes it sound like anything but an aesthetic gimmick.

Nah, the era itself has way too many technological differences with the modern day to have it only be an aesthetic gimmick. That's actually why I'm looking forward to it. No assault rifle spam, no fancy sights and scopes, no jets and helicopters randomly bombing you, etc etc. That's why I'm looking forward to it.

And there'll probably be horses to ride! Doing a first-person cavalry charge sounds fucking awesome.

If there's any game guilty of just having an aesthetic veneer it's CoD. Even in Future Warfare, despite the swanky movement system, we mostly had the same kind of gameplay. The same kind of assault rifles, SMG's, objectives, etc.

Not that I trust DICE that much after the whole BF4 debacle. We'll see, but I'm giddy for the implications of a WW1 setting.

Ten times less, or ten times fewer? Or am I just being a pedantic dickhole?

Still, a shame, because unacceptable DLC practices aside, this looks to be the first Call of Duty in quite some time to have an interesting single player campaign. I'm afraid that this might send the wrong message to Activision, since this is essentially punishing innovation (assuming the game is as polished as previous entries).

I'll be damned. Maybe gamers can learn after all.

gee it's almost like releasing the same game every fucking year will eventually burn out the franchise.

Like... we had advanced warfare, that still had plenty of life in it. Did we need Black Ops III? Did we need any of this? You could of just built one thing, expand on it

Didn't they try to resurrect the Rockband franchise at some point? Given how they favour reacting over acting, I wonder what franchise they will next try to unintentionally run in to the ground.

Now watch as someone is gonna blame it on the last CoD having a female lead.

Cowabungaa:

Because it's an industry practice that's ultimately bad for the consumer and bad for the medium. If one of the market leaders is showing that the yearly release cycle fails we might actually see it stop being used and we hopefully won't see another case of what happened with Assassin's Creed.

This presumes that only games like Call of Duty and Assassin's Creed are viable and successful.

Given the immense variety of the industry, and the myriad of success stories outside cases like Call of Duty, I don't understand how you can make any of those claims. Notably the "it's bad for the medium".

It's...really not. If anything, it helps keep the industry afloat.

Nah, the era itself has way too many technological differences with the modern day to have it only be an aesthetic gimmick. That's actually why I'm looking forward to it. No assault rifle spam, no fancy sights and scopes, no jets and helicopters randomly bombing you, etc etc. That's why I'm looking forward to it.

Big assumption. Mechanically there's little to indicate that the game will play like anything different than any other Battlefield game. Instead of "rifle spam" you'll have "flamethrower spam". Instead of jets and helicopters you'll have woefully overpowered tanks and zeppelins.

Really, beyond the aesthetics, I haven't seen nor heard anything that shows BF1 to be in any way meaningfully different than any other core BF game.

And there'll probably be horses to ride! Doing a first-person cavalry charge sounds fucking awesome.

Yeah, I don't know that DICE will do that justice. I really don't. But more power to ya if it turns out well.

Still, I'm calling it now. The horses will control worse than any BF vehicle thus far. Hope I'm wrong, though. We need more quality war-horse gameplay in our games.

If there's any game guilty of just having an aesthetic veneer it's CoD. Even in Future Warfare, despite the swanky movement system, we mostly had the same kind of gameplay. The same kind of assault rifles, SMG's, objectives, etc.

Not really. Advanced Warfare played remarkably different than most other COD games. The inclusion of things like mechs and laser cannons made it feel like some unholy cross between Mechwarrior and Quake. But even if what you say were true, how does that negate what I said about Battlefield 1 and the BF series as a whole? The only real exception was Bad Company, but mechanically that was identical to all the others.

Not that I trust DICE that much after the whole BF4 debacle. We'll see, but I'm giddy for the implications of a WW1 setting.

Yes, a WWI setting sounds neat, but I still think everyone is letting that cloud their view of all of the other bullshit. It's still a modern-day DICE/EA game. It's still a Battlefield game. It's still going to lack 3rd party server support. It's going to lack mod support. It'll still use that abysmally stupid Battlelog menu system. It'll be rife with DLC and microtransactions. It'll still (likely) be mechanically similar or identical to the other BFs.

Now, if none of those things bother you, that's fine. The setting being the selling point makes sense then. But if any of those do bother you, and you're still excited for it because of the setting, then you're letting the aesthetic blind you. That's all I'm saying.

For me, I know what to expect, generally, from a COD game. I rarely play the multiplayer outside of LAN and bot games, so I usually wait for a GOTY edition where I can get the game and all the DLC for less. The DLC and other nonsense rarely has an effect on me. As such, the primary selling point of Infinite Warfare, that being an open-ended, possibly non-linear campaign with ground, sky, and space-based battles, is enough to convince me to jump back into the series. If the promise of WWI is enough for you to ignore all the other aspects of modern Battlefield games, then we're in the same boat.

Besides, by the time I get around to buying these games I could probably buy both for less than either will cost at launch.

:P

WinterWyvern:
Now watch as someone is gonna blame it on the last CoD having a female lead.

I mean, maybe? But really the primary criticisms that seem to be coming from the COD kiddies are:

1: They're locking the COD4 remaster behind the pre-order!
2: COD is all 'bout mah 'realistic' shooter. What's all this space shit? This isn't Star Wars!

Number 1 I can see, though it remains to be seen if the remaster is even any good.

Number 2 is just a bunch of kids taking an over-the-top series far to serious, and confusing "realism" for "gritty".

Vigormortis:

Steven Bogos:

Thankfully, I'm so glad that this has happened. "Yearly Call of Duty" was something that simply had to stop, and it might as well be this year.

Why? Why does it HAVE to stop? What were yearly COD releases doing to you? Were they beating you with rocks? Were they raping your dog?

Well, they WERE putting a dog in the line of fire when they weren't using groundbreaking technology to frighten poor fishes, so there is that. ;)

Oh, this is just awesome. I wonder if the whole Modern Warfare remaster being exclusive to buyers of IW is the main reason the numbers are so low, or most COD players a finally realizing there will be plenty of copies (especially via the PSN and Live stores), or if the MW debacle is just the final straw after years of seeing the series decline. Considering how some people are really looking forward to the new game's different approach to an FPS campaign mode, I'm leaning towards the first point. Activision tried something kinda dirty, and the community has finally reacted. I'm proud of my consumer brethren. Maybe when Activision announces a separate SKU for the MW remaster, IW preorders will pick, up or its sales during the launch window will match the other CODs' numbers.

Maybe Acti will tone back the yearly updates and let one or two of the three developers assigned to COD do something else. (Hopefully, they don't just fire a ton of the development team, but lately, there's always bad news with good news in this industry.) All they've needed to do was go to 1 COD every 2 or 3 years, and support the latest 2 titles with the occasional map pack and, maybe now, mini-campaign DLC a year or so after the main titles release. (Oh, and keep microtransactions purely cosmetic.)

What was it that Sterling said years ago? It went something like, "Gamers will buy anything - until they don't. And that lack of support will be sudden, sharp and painful." Looks like time might be up for Activision's most reliable cash cow.

EDIT:
Actually, maybe we're even lucky enough to see the community slowly edge its way towards growing a spine. Remember the pre-order scheme Square Enix had originally planned for the next Deus Ex? ... Yeah. :D

Oh. This is VERY unexpected.

Usually, the game does very, very well, regardless of the backlash, but I honestly never really expected this to happen.

I always thought that Call of Duty would be king of the castle for a very long time, and that despite Battlefield 1's high praise, Call of Duty would still sell many, many more copies that it, and it would be surprising if BF could even hold a candle to that success, but now, it seems like it is a lot less impossible.

I bet a lot of the reason is actually Treyarch's fault due to the last gen version having most of its content cut. My brief time at Gamestop was during then, and that was a thing that I got asked a lot about. Maybe a lot of people pre-ordered the PS3 or 360 version not knowing, and are now worried.

Also maybe cause this is finally a current gen CoD, and lots of people still don't have Xbox Ones and PS4s, particularly those who mostly just play CoD and only had a last gen console cause of it.

The way I see it there are three factors that together resulted in the low pre-orders:

1) The franchise fatigue: I'm really starting to think that people are just tired of the franchise at this point and want it to go away.

2) The Sci-fi inchworming: The series has been inchworming in the sci-fi genre's direction since MW2 and despite this game fully committing to the genre it somehow feels completely done to death simply because of how much it resembles Hack Ops 3 and Advanced Snorefare.

3) The Modern Warfare remastering bullsh*t: This really pissed a lot of people off (myself included).

Individually I doubt that these factors could've killed the enthusiasm for this game. If it maintained the sci-fi setting but was released 5 years from now, without the MW1 remaster attached to it, I doubt the reaction would've been so negative. If it were set in WW2 without the MW1 remaster it also would've been seen as a breath of fresh air despite the franchise fatigue. But because Activision fired all three of this triple-barreled shit shotgun's barrels all at once the end result is everybody giving them the shaft.

And I'm glad that Activision f*cked up so badly that nobody is rushing to its defense anymore. If this game bombs I really hope it marks the end of this dead horse franchise, at least as an annual staple.

Vigormortis:

Cowabungaa:

Because it's an industry practice that's ultimately bad for the consumer and bad for the medium. If one of the market leaders is showing that the yearly release cycle fails we might actually see it stop being used and we hopefully won't see another case of what happened with Assassin's Creed.

This presumes that only games like Call of Duty and Assassin's Creed are viable and successful.

Given the immense variety of the industry, and the myriad of success stories outside cases like Call of Duty, I don't understand how you can make any of those claims. Notably the "it's bad for the medium".

It's...really not. If anything, it helps keep the industry afloat.

While I think that some people are just sick of it being there and weren't fans anyway, I still think their release cycle was rubbish.

The yearly releases hurt me as a fan of the game by making the community transient. You get 1 year to play the multiplayer, before you can expect a pretty severe migration. My favourite titles in the series, CoD 4, Modern Warfare 2, and Black Ops, I was happy playing those for an extended period. Obviously there comes a point where people are going to move on, but dropping a new game guaranteed that you'd lose people, and your option to continue playing was to buy the next one at launch price.

It also continued their launch price holding value. I rarely see the titles on discounts at the point where their multiplayer is still going to be doing well, because suddenly, there's the next one. There's a few people playing CoD 4 still, depending on the hour in my area, and you can find a game on MW2 or Black Ops if you really want to, but the variety of gameplay and modes drops drastically.

As far as keeping the industry afloat? No. It's just flooding the market and creating fatigue in consumers, and it increases the resentment towards the game. I'd rather they took longer to polish the games and create truly distinct, great entries, because I haven't felt good about a Call of Duty singleplayer campaign since MW2, and I haven't felt good about the multiplayer since Black Ops. I tried continuing, but it stopped grabbing me, I'd like to see them really make something special.

Evonisia:
I don't know whether this is backlash to Activision's desperate marketing, or the fact it's in the future

I think there's a few reasons.

The biggest (and sadly least exciting) is that a lot of Call of Duty players don't pre-order, they just buy it from the store or their parents buy it from the store for them. CoD is like EA sports games in that respect, it's biggest market isn't the pre-ordering hobbyist. These people will buy a shed load of Call of Duty come November.

After that, After Modern Warfare 3, BlOps 2, Ghosts, Advanced Warfare and BlOps 3 players are a bit sick of every call of duty looking like a Neill Blomkamp movie. Activision are famously risk averse but with three studios working on three CoD games at the same time you would think they'd do more than just future warfare all the time.

Lastly it's Infinity Ward, nobody that knows cares about Infinity Ward anymore, the last thing they made was Ghosts.

fix-the-spade:

I think there's a few reasons.

The biggest (and sadly least exciting) is that a lot of Call of Duty players don't pre-order, they just buy it from the store or their parents buy it from the store for them. CoD is like EA sports games in that respect, it's biggest market isn't the pre-ordering hobbyist. These people will buy a shed load of Call of Duty come November.

while a large chunk of sales do come on the day i had a quick look on the same site as OT the week before realease and it was about 1.4mil preorders over the two platforms. no matter how many people buy on the day 640k is a big percentage of players.

one other thing i see said a lot is that while some people are super into cod others only buy it because all their friends are playing it and want to play together, maybe that accounts for a part of buying on the day, they are waiting to see what their friends buy and then following the crowd. if the crowd has moved on they might move on as well.

i wonder if overwatch has anything to do with this. it seems to be doing good numbers and getting a lot of attention. it could be the people who like to preorder cod got a free play of it during the beta and found their new obsession.

Maybe it's just that the trailer is so bland and uninteresting that even the "true believers" just don't find it appealing.

Starke:

Steven Bogos:
[b]combined[/i]

Is it bold, or italics, the world may never know. :p

Boldtalics: They're a thing now!

List:
Isn't this because of the Modern-warfare remaster bullshit? Because if people are getting tired of yearly cod, the decline shouldn't be this drastic. Or the fact that the setting is too far forward in the future that they lost their main demographic?

As I recall, the Modern Warfare Remaster bullshit was actually Activision's response to the poor reception of the original trailer...a bit more honey to try and bait people into pre-orders.

Clearly it didn't work.

The cow would eventually become a dried out husk.

It seems the day is coming.

The Rogue Wolf:
Maybe it's just that the trailer is so bland and uninteresting that even the "true believers" just don't find it appealing.

Starke:

Steven Bogos:
[b]combined[/i]

Is it bold, or italics, the world may never know. :p

Boldtalics: They're a thing now!

In HTML you're supposed to use [em] instead of both [I] and [B], with you manually setting the font weight and whether it's italicized in the style sheet. But more to the point, CSS: Boldtalics before it was cool.

edit- these forums are sanitized against html injections huh. Somebody in the past kept posting embedded midi files didn't they?

OT- Something that's been ignored is that activision let the air out of its own room this year. They're the owners and publishers for Blizzard whose game, Team Fortress 3, has been so popular Amazon Prime is out of physical copies (and I refuse to buy it without the $10 discount damn it)

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