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Is this what we should expect now that Xbox owns Call of Duty?

Xbox has an interesting strategy to try and sell you on Modern Warfare 3. And by interesting, we mean intrusive.

Modern Warfare 3 Main Art
Image credit: Activision

Boy oh boy does Microsoft want you to know that Modern Warfare 3 is available to pre-order, and that you can play its campaign right now if you do so. The platform holder's way of advertising that fact, however, is very questionable.

Xbox Series X/S owners turn on their consoles today, expecting their console's homepage, only to be met with... the store page for Modern Warfare 3.

And no, this isn't a banner takeover like you see on websites, and sometimes on the Xbox dashboard itself. This is the game's actual store page, with a button to buy it and everything. Whoever is behind this idea even thought of adding an Exit button, just to be a little merciful towards any confused Xbox owner who's greeted by this unusual screen when they turn on their console.

There are reports about it everywhere on Twitter, and it appears you'll only get it once. Here's what our very own Jim Trinca saw when he turned on his console earlier:

Red hot? | Image credit: VG247, Xbox.

That takeover style of advertisement is not novel, nor is it Microsoft's first time flirting with the idea. When Starfield launched, the Xbox app on PC changed its design to align its aesthetics with those of the game for several days.

Upon booting up the app, there was no way to miss that Starfield is available to play, whether through Game Pass or by purchasing it directly. The Modern Warfare 3 ad is worth highlighting because of how pervasive it is, and how crudely it's been implemented. No one expects to turn on their console and see a store page - any store page.

It also comes across as a little desperate. Modern Warfare 3 has already garnered a negative response for its campaign, and its Zombies mode was rejected by fans the moment it was revealed. While the multiplayer beta was generally well-received, there are still many question marks around the full game.

Beyond Modern Warfare 3 itself, this is technically the first promotion-related move Microsoft has pulled now that it owns Call of Duty. If this is the beginning of more aggressive forms of marketing on Xbox, then owners have a right to be worried, especially given Microsoft's notorious past with Xbox dashboard ads.

Modern Warfare 3 arrives November 10 on PC, PS5, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

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