Chart-Track defends MW2 sales count

Analyst questions hasty results.

Chart-Track has defended yesterday's record-breaking Modern Warfare 2 sales claim after industry analyst Michael Pachter questioned the figures.

"UK retailers have been at the forefront of electronic data capture for decades, which in turn allows us to capture daily sales from 99 per cent of retailers on our panel," Bloch told GamesIndustry.biz. "That's over 6000 retail outlets plus all the etailers - currently 25 different store fronts.

"Every retailer on our panel supplies Electronic Point of Sale data. In the specific case of pre-orders through retailers with High Street stores, we can and do pick these up sometimes months before a product actually launches and these are set up by the retailer to report as a specific retailer code. When the product goes live we begin to track sales on the actual barcode for that product, along with the actual selling price for every single transaction.

"In the specific case of online retailers and pre-orders, the moment they ship a product it registers as a sale in the daily transaction files we are sent. Online retailers have to ship the product in advance in order to hit the street date, so we will pick up actual sales (shipped to the customer) prior to the day one release. These are re-dated to day one," he added.

Earlier this morning, Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pacther cast doubts over the early count.

"I don't know how anyone could aggregate UK sales that fast," said Pachter. "However, you can't argue with 'facts' such as Chart-Track reports of first-day sales. I have a feeling that the figure includes all pre-orders, but not necessarily those units actually picked up on day one."

Bloch added that he expects Chart-Track will update the day-one figures next week, at the same time ELSPA publishes full-week sales for the game.

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