The Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 disc is a 70MB coaster

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
(Image credit: Activision Blizzard)

Some players have gotten early copies of the retail version of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and are reporting that the disc contains just a few megabytes of data - meaning that basically the entire game still has to be downloaded from the internet.

The initial report comes from Does It Play, an account that catalogs which retail game discs require additional downloads in order to be played. A screenshot of the information screen from the PS5 version of Modern Warfare 2 suggests that just 72.23MB of data is on the disc. The full game install is well over 100GB, so you can expect a massive download. The situation appears to be similar on Xbox, though we haven't seen the exact install sizes.

Open the Modern Warfare 2 safes

Modern Warfare 2 safe code Alone 2

(Image credit: Activision)

Use these Modern Warfare 2 safe codes to open up the ones you find and get the rewards inside. 

This is not new for Call of Duty. Does It Play's database notes that the disc versions of the past several entries in the series, including Vanguard, Black Ops: Cold War, and the previous Modern Warfare, all require additional downloads and are unplayable offline.

But while Call of Duty's discs are perfunctory these days, the same is not true of all retail releases, or even a majority of them. Physical versions of recent hits like Elden Ring, Horizon Forbidden West, and Xenoblade Chronicles 3 are fully playable without additional downloads - with the caveat that each of those examples are dramatically improved by post-launch patches. And online features like the Modern Warfare 2 Battle Pass are more usual download additions. 

Digital games offer plenty of advantages over their physical counterparts, like pre-loads, early releases, convenient launches from your console, and the lack of physical waste. For folks who still buy physical media, however, those things don't beat the ability to play without an internet connection, keep an archival version of the game on a shelf, and trade or sell that title.

You can at least trade or sell the Modern Warfare 2 disc, but it's missing all the other advantages of physical media. Subscription services and disc drive-free consoles suggest that publishers are eager to go full digital, but many players aren't ready or willing to make that jump.

Check out our guide to Call of Duty MW2 pre-orders if you're looking for a coaster of your own, or look at the details for the Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer release time if you're making the most of your digital download.

Dustin Bailey
Staff Writer

Dustin Bailey joined the GamesRadar team as a Staff Writer in May 2022, and is currently based in Missouri. He's been covering games (with occasional dalliances in the worlds of anime and pro wrestling) since 2015, first as a freelancer, then as a news writer at PCGamesN for nearly five years. His love for games was sparked somewhere between Metal Gear Solid 2 and Knights of the Old Republic, and these days you can usually find him splitting his entertainment time between retro gaming, the latest big action-adventure title, or a long haul in American Truck Simulator.