When it was released last year, Call Of Duty: Black Ops became the fastest selling entertainment product ever. Not just video game - entertainment product. It made more money, more quickly than any other film or album in history. Including Steps' greatest hits. Hard to believe.
The record it broke? Its predecessor Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2's, set 12 months earlier. So it's fair to say the upcoming Modern Warfare 3 has a great deal to live up to. No pressure then.
The reason for the Call Of Duty franchise's phenomenal success is its multiplayer. It's the reason that Black Ops is still bothering the weekly charts' top 10 nearly a year on. And last week we flew out to LA to experience the new modes for ourselves.
Kill Confirmed: A team based game where you don't just have to kill your enemies, you have to prove their deaths by collecting your fallen foes' dog tags. It's not just as simple as kill and collect though. The team with the most win, so if one of your team dies, you need to protect his dog tag at all costs.
Infection: One player starts solo, but everyone he kills becomes "infected" and joins his team. It's like a video game version of British Bulldogs, albeit with zombies and automatic weapons.
Team Defender: Grab your enemy's flag and protect your flag carrier to score the most points.
Drop Zone: The longer you keep control of the zone from the opposing team, the more care packages you collect from the aircraft circling overhead. And more importantly, the more points you get.
Juggernaut: Remember the heavily-armoured, (mostly) impossible to defeat Juggernauts from previous games? Now you can be one. The catch? Every other player is trying to kill you. The one who manages it becomes the juggernaut himself. On the bright side, you then get a chance to kill him back.
That's on top of the news that MW2's co-op Spec Ops missions will return, as will the best new game modes introduced in Black Ops - Gun Game (first to make 20 kills with 20 different guns wins) and One In The Chamber (you have just one bullet, kill an enemy and you get another, miss and it's melee attacks only).
It's a formidable multiplayer package that hints at exactly why Call Of Duty is annually the game to beat. Your move Battlefield 3.
Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is released on 8 Nov on Xbox 360, PS3, PC and Wii