Modern Warfare 3 hits shelves next Tuesday, 8 November. But those who snag a copy before the release date could run the risk of having their Live accounts frozen if they play the game early.

That’s the word direct from , relating news it’s had from the game’s publisher, . Read on for all the details. With copies of Modern Warfare 3 already seemingly in the wild, thanks to US stores pulling the release trigger early, gamers have been asking the Big M about just what happens when they load up MW3 on their Xbox 360 before next Tuesday.

Initially, Xbox Live’s Director of Policy and Enforcement, Stephen Tolouse, said on Twitter that, “For those asking about MW3 pre-release play: If your copy is legit and obtained legitly [sic], have fun. It’s a great game.” But after talking with Activision, his tone was somewhat different, “Mw3 pre-release play not authorised. So pls [sic] be patient. Playing early may impact your account.” That rather euphemistic tweet means you could be locked out from Xbox Live temporarily if you play Modern Warfare 3 before its proper release.

Is this a smart move by Activision and Microsoft? Or should it let you crack on with MW3 regardless of when you get it?

9ca4300444are 31.jpg 450x281 Modern Warfare 3: play it early and you could be banned from Xbox Live

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Modern Warfare 3: play it early and you could be banned from Xbox Live