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Crysis 2 pre-orders are on the milk carton

David Hughes's picture

EA may need to post a "missing" poster to find pre-orders of Crysis 2 because, according to data compiled by HULIQ News, they are nowhere to be found.

Though the release of Crysis 2 on March 22nd remains too far away to issue a sales projection, it is noteworthy to comment that pre-orders for the game are remarkably slow in arriving. The game is well-known in FPS circles despite the first iteration being a PC-exclusive and it has received a fair amount of marketing - including a highly visible public beta of its multiplayer back in February. The combination of being a sequel to an established franchise and offering a public display of the multiplayer is normally a recipe for racking up pre-order sales of a game, but HULIQ saw no noticeable uptick in pre-orders after the Xbox Live beta.

Little has been officially demoed of the PC version, and the relatively low minimum specifications for the game have left the enthusiast PC community that supported the first game wondering if the sequel will be the graphics powerhouse which made the previous entry so notable. Moreover, the structure of the game's multiplayer feels a lot more like Call of Duty than a sci-fi shooter along the lines of Halo: Reach and Killzone 3, but Crysis 2 releases not long after a host of CoD players have shelled out $15 for the 'First Strike' DLC to extend their playing time with Call of Duty: Black Ops. In fact, it can be argued (as I have elsewhere) that the beta for Crysis 2 did a very poor job in selling itself as an alternative (rather than a clone) to Black Ops.

Pre-orders for the Xbox 360 version of the game have started to make an impression in the marketplace, but they will have to pick up appreciably in pace if Crysis 2 is to appear on the HULIQ News tracking chart before the game's release date. I was wrong in wondering where Killzone 3 pre-orders were (only to have them increase dramatically the next day) but that case happened further away from its release date. Killzone 3 released February 22nd, but its pre-orders increased dramatically the last week in January - and accelerated even futher when the public beta released over PSN at the beginning of February. It is two weeks before Crysis 2's release date and long after its public beta and pre-orders remain negligible.

THQ recently revealed that Homefront, its entry into the FPS fray, had secured over 200,000 pre-orders to date with a release date of March 15th. Using this as a reference point, I would be very surprised if EA has secured even 100,000 pre-orders for Crysis 2 despite what should be a much more visible game. Some of this could be tempered by the PC market's heavy trend towards digital sales not tracked by HULIQ, but most AAA PC releases see far more boxed retail pre-orders than Crysis 2 to date. Though EA is likely more concerned with the sales fate of Battlefield 3 this fall, things (as of right now) do not look terribly promising for consumer interest in Crysis 2.

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