PC gamers hoping to pick up Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 this holiday season is in of a bit of surprise. Instead of the usual $49.99 price tag for a PC game, the highly anticipated sequel will be selling for $59.99. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is the most anticipated game of 2009. The main reason for that honor is that it is the direct sequel to one of the best-selling games ever, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
While Call of Duty was already a popular brand name before the arrival of the fourth main title, Modern Warfare was special in many ways. For one, the PC, Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 game abandons the tired World War II setting for a more exciting modernized world. As a result, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare felt new and refreshing compared to past titles.
While the single-player mode was great, the main selling point was the online multiplayer thanks to the deep customizations, well-designed maps and flawless controls. As a result, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare went on to sell millions across the PC, Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. Call of Duty has never been more popular. Even the spin-off game, World at War, managed to become one of the best-selling games of 2008.
The Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty World at War both debuted at the $59.99 price point. On the other hand, the PC versions only retails for $49.99. The price discrepancy can be attributed to the higher licensing fees imposed by Sony and Microsoft for the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360.As a result, you see almost every new titles on the high-definition platforms sell for $59.99.
PC gamers won’t be so fortunate with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, however, as Activision decided to bump up the price from $49.99 to $59.99. This, of course, isn’t sitting well with fans of the Call of Duty series, which began on the PC. With support from PC gamers, Call of Duty wouldn’t be what it is today.
Much of the hate is directed towards publisher Activision instead of developer Infinity Ward. Activision is the biggest third-party publisher in the gaming industry. Unfortunately, they have been abusing their powers recently with overcharging for certain games (like the Guitar Hero expansions) and other petty tactics like suing to prevent the release of Brutal Legends, a game which they chose dropped and then was later picked up by Electronic Arts.
Their latest snafu with the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 pricing on the PC won’t help Activision’s public perception.