Two of the most anticipated First Person Shooter Titles of this year have just launched less than a week ago. Battlefield 3 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. So what are the stats for these two games. Well as it turns out CoD (Call of Duty) sold more than 6.5 million units within the first 24 hours of sales in the US and UK making it a strong contestant for the most successful game of the year. This is a whopping 1.5 million more units than the first week of international sales for BF (Battlefield 3). There are a number of  things that led to this outstanding performance by CoD and the still respectable performance of BF. An important factor for this performance is the advertising Activision Blizzard (Developers of CoD) have put behind the release staring action packed fighting scenes featuring well known celebrities. A lot of the blogs in our class have dealt with the ethical implications of the latter ad featuring cobe bryan and its effect on kids. Jacqueline Chen, Tommy Chen, Henry Fung and Tony Liu all concern themselves with the ethical implications. To be honest I am not buying this argument.

First of all is there still no clear consensus as to how violent video games affect someones perception of violence in Real life (as a Major in Psychology with a strong interest as to how gaming affects human behaviour I can provide everyone interested with plenty of articles that support either side of the argument.) and secondly is a Basket Ball player not necessarily an idol for kids but rather for teenagers and young adults. Battlefield for example is ranked PEGI: 16 thus this targeting is perfectly legit and although CoD is ranked PEGI: 18 the ads were by no means targeted directly to people under 18. I found especially this ad very appealing and reflecting of the gaming community.

Setting aside these possibly difficult moral issues arises the question of return on advertising that is famously difficult to measure. This case will no doubt be no exception. But the massive head start of CoD over BF must come from somewhere and this might be due to BF requiring a heavily intrusive downloading service which kept many people from buying it (including myself) or the mere fact of BF requiring more team play thus being more prone to less enjoyable game play but I cannot help but feel that the superior advertising campaign CoD had played a major role in its success. Especially the heavy involvement of gaming internet sited and other PR measures helped create the hype around CoD that it did have on launch.





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