News: Claims 'special permission' from Activision. Activision denies it.
Kotaku is reporting that several GameStop stores in the northeast have broken the street date for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. According to the report, stores in Bowie, MD, Bowling Green, OH, Reading, PA and New York City have unleashed the dogs of war... err, made the game available for sale early.
Officially, sales of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 were supposed to begin at midnight tonight.
According to GameStop, this is not the work of rogue store managers or persuasive shoppers. Instead, it was a corporate decision made after local game shops in the cities named above also broke the street date. GameStop told Kotaku...
This past weekend, GameStop made the decision to break street date and sell reserved copies of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 in select markets where other retailers had broken street date. Our decision followed many conversations with Activision and was an effort to protect our customer base.
OK, seems fair and all. But hold on just a minute. According to Activision, they gave no such permission to GameStop and told Kotaku...
"Activision has not given any retailer permission to sell Modern Warfare 2 prior to the Nov. 10 street date. The company fully supports the Nov. 10 street date."
This was preceded by a tweet
from Infinity Ward's community manager, Robert Bowling, where he also stated that no permission has been given to any retailer to sell the game early, while also confirming that players who bought the game early would not be banned:
ANY store selling [Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2] early is in violation of street date. There are no "special permissions". That said, we won't punish players for it.
There you have it, some stores are selling Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 early. Whether Activision gave them permission or not, the genie is out of the bottle and it's not going back in. I also think it is unlikely GameStop will be punished by Activision in any way as the two giants of the game industry have a long history of staging in-store promotions together. This transgression has only added more fuel to the Modern Warfare 2 hype fire.
So if you're feeling bored today, and don't want to wait until midnight, give your local GameStop a call. They just might sell Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 to you.
We'll have more soon.