How To Not F–k Up the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 PC Launch

Remember to Turn On Servers BEFORE Launching Game

Planning on launching a new entry into a huge franchise after years of hype (and maybe even an enormous beta test) with the hope that it’ll outsell everyone else in the industry? Great, congratulations — but make sure we can all play the damn thing, would you? I know, I know: just because you’ve released a bunch of Battlefield titles and each one has had the exact same problems for the last decade doesn’t mean you should be able to anticipate said problems by bringing more servers online at launch. Better to err on the side of doing everything as cheaply as possible rather than ensure players who pay for your product can actually play it when they want to.

But Activision should be in a unique position to give a s–t about whether it satisfies customers, given that it’s trying to get those customers to pay for this new Call of Duty: Elite thing it’s trying out. Plus, we get the impression that Activision kind of likes us players after we attended the Call of Duty XP event (which was all for charity and fan service), and we know Activision hate the guys at EA. That should be reason enough to spend a little more and get all (or most) of the necessary servers cranking ahead of launch.

We All Know When It’s Broke, So Don’t Pretend It Ain’t

Look, no big AAA PC launch is flawless. Some AAA PC launches are less flawed than others, and some don’t work at all. We would appreciate it if you would look at recent PC launches and try to avoid being in the “this doesn’t work for a week” camp, but hey, sometimes meteors hit server farms or a developer spends five years making a mountain look cool while forgetting that we’re spending a lot more time looking at the ugly things like blurry doors and walls. But when that happens, please don’t pretend nothing’s wrong and hope that your Metacritic score will keep getting you sales. Because you know what we do then? We make fun of you with graphics and post them on Reddit.

Anyway, a little transparency and assurance that you’re fixing stuff that breaks down goes a looong way toward making the community not think you’ve decided that since you made DOOM a million years ago, you can phone in every game you make from then on. Just let us know that you’re aware it’s broken, these things happen, you’re working on it. Then we all sit around the Internet going, “Well, at least I don’t need to bitch in a forum for a week, those nice Activision guys are hard at work on it.” Even if you’re not hard at work on it, we will think you are, instead of thinking you were just tricking us into giving you our money so you could make a giant Scrooge McDuck money pool to swim in, with a big EA stamped on the front of the building.

Trust us, we’re aware that developing a game for the PC that works on everybody’s hardware is tough. But we believe in you guys! You’re doing this for a living and investing millions of dollars! Running a few tests isn’t that hard, flipping on a few extra servers isn’t that expensive, and keeping us all in the loop when something breaks down won’t embarrass you. We just want to play your game, Activision/Infinity Ward/Sledgehammer/EA/DICE/Bethesda/id. Help us help you help us to do that. Please.

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Follow Hornshaw on Twitter: @philhornshaw.

Answer the call of duty and survive WW3 with our text and video walkthrough for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

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1 Comment on How To Not F–k Up the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 PC Launch


On November 3, 2011 at 1:27 pm

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