Nealy a full week after Activision's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 celebrated the biggest entertainment launch in history, players are still struggling with Call of Duty: Elite. Registration problems persist and service remains intermittent. As a result, paid subscribers are being compensated with 30 days free.
The Call of Duty: Elite fiasco might be easier for gamers to understand if the service hadn't enjoyed such a long beta. More than two million players signed up over the Summer to help get Call of Duty: Elite ready for prime time. For that matter, there is also the recent example of Battlefield 3. Server issues and online pass problems plagued the game's early days, a situation gamers can't be happy to see replicated with Modern Warfare 3.
So what went wrong? Call of Duty VP of Production Daniel Suarez assess the situation candidly in an interview with Joystiq.
"So the launch of MW3 had been huge and we knew it would be huge, it just translated into a tremendous amount of traffic to Elite. And we anticipated it to be big, it just turned out to be even bigger than that."
"We did a beta, the beta was intended to give us the data on how everything would behave with people hitting different parts of the service and different parts of the site. But when you add the complexities of it being not only an online service but one that has a console component, a PC component, and a soon-to-be-released mobile component, all being released at the same time, it's never been done before at this scale."
Though the complexities involved must indeed be vast, the counterpoint to this perspective is that Activision had every reason in the world to expect Modern Warfare 3 to launch on exactly the scale that it has. The company has worked diligently for months to ensure the record breaking success of Modern Warfare 3, just as it did last year with Black Ops, and Modern Warfare 2 before that. Activision was clearly well prepared for Modern Warfare 3's retail release, so why not Call of Duty: Elite's public roll-out?
Players are advised to keep checking the Call of Duty: Elite status page for the latest updates on the situation.
What do you think, Ranters: are issues of scale a reasonable explanation for what's going on with Call of Duty: Elite, or should the service have been better prepared?
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is available now for the Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, DS, and PC.
Call of Duty: Elite is available now for Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.
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