The UK's leading games retailer GAME has said that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, which is released worldwide today, is its most pre-ordered title ever.
"Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is the most popular game for pre-orders that Game and Gamestation have ever seen," GAME spokesperson Anne-Marie Mason told Eurogamer.
"Beating records set by last year's number one game, Call of Duty: Black Ops, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is now Game Group's largest pre-order title in the company's history."
Analyst Atul Bagga told GameSpot that pre-orders for the game are tracking around 55 per cent ahead of Black Ops and 70 per cent ahead of Modern Warfare 2. In total 9m copies are said to have already been pre-ordered across the globe.
Last year Call of Duty: Black Ops re-wrote the record books by selling 1.4m copies in the UK in its first 24 hours. It has since gone on to become the biggest selling game ever in the region, much as it has in the US.
However, it's by no means inevitable that MW3 will achieve all of its goals.
Last year's Call of Duty faced a more hopeful economic climate, with the world seemingly on its way out of recession. This year the economic uncertainty is arguably worse than ever.
And don't underestimate the potential impact of EA's Battlefield 3, which itself sold 5m units in its first days on the market, becoming the publisher's fastest ever selling title.
Though Battlefield 3 has more or less no chance of bettering the performance of MW3, EA will be hoping that its success – and its highly praised single player mode – may be enough to make some punters skip COD this year.