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Modern Warfare 2 to be "biggest entertainment launch of all time"

Activision wants shooter to eclipse previous records set by movie and videogame releases

Activision Blizzard has briefed its advertising agency TBWA to make the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 the "biggest entertainment launch of all time".

The publisher wants the Infinity Ward-developed title to eclipse previous records set by games such as Grand Theft Auto IV, which sold 3.6 million units on its first day with a retail value of USD 310 million.

"We believe the idea that TBWA presented to us delivers on that goal," said Brad Jakeman, chief creative officer of Activision, speaking to Ad Age.

"What we liked most about the TBWA campaign is that it's an idea that's big enough to be articulated in lots of different kind of media. That is always the acid test for a great idea."

While the campaign is currently under wraps, it's expected to incorporate TV, print, outdoor, social and online media.

"The strategic objective is not to just run advertising on day one and say, 'Go to a retailer and buy the game,' but it is to really start building a movement and start broadening the audience for beyond a core gamer audience," added Jakeman.

Earlier in the week, analyst Mike Hickey predicted that Modern Warfare 2 can sell over 11 million units the fiscal year, pulling in USD 803 million for Activision.

"We estimate the combined Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 installed base for US and Europe has grown 125 per cent and 200 per cent, respectively since Modern Warfare's November '07 release, ushering in a remarkably larger market opportunity for Modern Warfare 2," said Hickey.

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