If staying up late to start Call of Duty: Modern Warfare isn't all that appealing to you, then you may be in luck. Some GameStop stores are preparing to let players pick up copies of Modern Warfare at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. Depending on what part of the country you're in, you may have Modern Warfare in your hands before the sun's fully set.
At VentureBeat, Jeff Grubb reported that Activision would "look the other way" if GameStop started selling copies of Modern Warfare at 6 p.m. PT. Grubb called one GameStop store and was told that he could "probably" purchase the game after 7 p.m. MT.
USgamer called three GameStop locations—two on the East Coast, one on the West—to ask when the stores would start selling copies of Modern Warfare. All three stores said they were preparing to sell the game at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. On Twitter, GameStop is advertising a livestreamed "launch night event" for Modern Warfare scheduled to start at 8:15 p.m. ET.
Your experience will likely depend on your timezone and how busy your GameStop location is. Both East Coast locations USG contacted are usually scheduled to close at 9 p.m., and are distributing tickets ahead of time to people in order to move the register lines along quickly. The store associate at the GameStop location USG called on the West Coast said that customers could simply pick up their pre-orders or purchase Modern Warfare between 6 p.m. and closing time.
A representative for Activision declined to comment on the matter, and USG has not heard back from a representative for GameStop.
For PC players, Activision has confirmed that Modern Warfare will (also) launch globally via Battle.net at 6 p.m. PT. Whatever Activision's reasoning is for being coy about Modern Warfare's retail release timing, it's still worth knowing that you can probably play the game tonight—and that there's a chance your local GameStop may run out of copies, in case you were hoping to pick it up early tomorrow.
So, whether you're buying it for the PC, PS4, or Xbox One, you could be playing Modern Warfare in just a few hours. USG's guide section will have you covered on eveything you need to know about Modern Warfare after it launches.