There has been a lot of mudslinging and smack talking between the heads of EA and Activision, where EA folks have repeatedly stated that Battlefield 3 is designed to take down Modern Warfare 3 and that Call of Duty will be over in 2-3 years. That’s EA when they’re speaking in general to create hype around their product.
However, the tone is quite different when they’re talking to investors and shareholders. EA CFO Eric Brown recently told a group of investors that they don’t expect Battlefield 3 to surpass Modern Warfare. Brown said:
“Just to be clear, the [Call of Duty] franchise did about 23 million units worldwide. We don’t expect to surpass them with this year’s Battlefield 3, just to be very clear.”
To borrow the phrase from Brown, “just to be very clear”, no one really expected Battlefield 3 to beat Modern Warfare 3 in terms of units sold, but it will most certainly give it a run for its money. Many industry analysts expect Battlefield 3 sales to top 10 million, and the game is off to a great start, if recent pre-order numbers are any indication: Battlefield 3 has been pre-ordered 1.25 million times to date, with a month and a half left until game launch.