The Call of Duty mega-hit garnered massive sales but left Infinity Ward off top spot, so what gives?

Develop 100: The curious case of Modern Warfare 3

Previously we looked at how Nintendo’s revenues had dipped significantly during its transition months to the 3DS and its upcoming next-gen console the Wii U.

Over the coming weeks, Develop will be publishing extracts and highlight data from the book, which uses GfK Chart-Track research on retail sales to formulate a ranking based on UK revenues.

The Develop 100 is an iPad-exclusive book, available for just £4.99 via the Develop iPad app. Click here to download it.

Today we look at the curious case of the latest entry into the games industry’s biggest blockbuster, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

Despite knocking all of its competitors out of the park with UK retail revenues for the game reaching an incredible £128.58m, developers Infinity Ward was pipped to the top spot of the Develop 100 by EA Canada, which ‘only’ raised £113.27m overall.

So what gives? The game was actually co-developed with a new Activision studio, Sledgehammer Games (which makes it to No.4).

The game’s success, both in terms of revenue and critical praise, prove distributed development didn’t hurt the game one bit.

Although keen-eyed players did spot a number of reused assets from the first Modern Warfare.

The Xbox 360 version of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 surprisingly outsold its PS3 counterpart by almost £10million.

Sales for Modern Warfare 1 and 2 meanwhile helped generate Infinity Ward an extra £4.5m to help nudge the Activision developer above Nintendo.

Want to know more? The entries for Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer Games include a wealth of extra information – and there are dedicated profiles for each of the studios in the top 100. Get the Develop 100 now.

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