Battling perceptions that the latest Medal of Honor
is under-performing commercially and critically, Electronic Arts said Tuesday that the game has sold 1.5 million units in its first five days of availability.
Citing European GfK Chart-Track data, EA said the game reached number one
in the UK's sales charts. Chart-Track said Medal of Honor
's UK launch was the biggest launch of any game in the long-running Medal of Honor
The game, released October 12 in the U.S. and shortly after in other territories, reached the sales milestone "in just five days since launching in the U.S. and with just two days of sales in Europe and Asia," EA said in a statement.
This latest entry is the first time the franchise has adopted a modern setting in the current Afghan war -- previous games throughout the series' 11-year history were set in World War II
. The single-player story was developed by L.A.-based EA studio Danger Close, and the multiplayer was done by Battlefield
Prior to launch, Medal of Honor
garnered criticism for its multiplayer mode, which allowed players to take control of coalition forces or the opposing Taliban. Following criticism from families of veteran, current and fallen soldiers, EA removed the term "Taliban" and replaced it with
Medal of Honor
's launch was marked by middling reviews (the game is currently garnering a score of 75 on Metacritic
), and The Wall Street Journal attributed a coinciding EA share price drop
to the lukewarm critical response, cooling a prior share price rise prompted by strong preorders for the game
EA responded to the launch reviews, saying, "Medal of Honor
is part of a larger EA strategy to take share in the shooter category. This is a marathon not a sprint -- today's Medal of Honor
launch represents a step forward in that race."
The publisher also said today that it would provide a free update for the game that adds a new multiplayer elimination mode called Clean Sweep, playable on two all-new maps. It arrives on November 2 on Xbox Live and PlayStation Network -- but only for holders of EA's Online Pass
[Update: Speaking to Fox Business
, EA CEO John Ricitiello noted that Medal of Honor
has generated over $100 million in sales so far.]