Xbox served North American Xbox users with a full-screen Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 pop-up ad on Thursday, to mark the start of the game’s campaign early access period.
As pictured by a social media user (embedded below), the full-screen ad appears when users boot their consoles and features callouts to purchase Modern Warfare 3’s premium version.
This isn’t the first time Xbox has served this kind of advert on consoles: In recent weeks, it pushed out similar full-screen promotions for Starfield and Forza Motorsport.
However, the Call of Duty ad is notable since it represents a significant marketing push for what is now one of Microsoft’s largest gaming franchises.
It appears that the pop-up ads are a one-off occurrence and are easily closed.
Modern Warfare 3’s campaign was made available today via early access, ahead of the full game’s release – including multiplayer – on November 10.
Modern Warfare 3 is a direct sequel to last year’s Modern Warfare 2. Development is being led by Sledgehammer, in collaboration with Infinity Ward, while Treyarch is in charge of its Zombies mode.
Microsoft completed its $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard last month, following over a year of legal battles to push the deal through.
Microsoft and PlayStation signed a binding agreement this year to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation following the acquisition, and Xbox boss Phil Spencer later reiterated Xbox’s pledge to maintain “100% parity” for Call of Duty across all platforms.
Speaking on the official Xbox podcast, Microsoft’s head of gaming suggested that the kind of exclusive skins and timed exclusivity on content drops such as betas seen on PlayStation would no longer happen now that Xbox is in charge.
“For Call of Duty players on PlayStation, and in the future Nintendo, I want you to feel 100% a part of the community,” he said. “I don’t want you to feel like there’s content you’re missing out, skins you’re missing out, there’s timing that you’re missing out on… that’s not the goal.
“The goal is 100% parity across all platforms as much as we can for launch and content. I say ‘as much as we can’ on parity because clearly some platforms have resolution and framerate differences, just based on performance, but there’s nothing else.”
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