It is that time of the year again, where gamers come together to argue over one of the most infamous gaming franchises of all-time; Call of Duty.
It would seem like every year there is a storm in the news when it comes to a new COD and now there is going to be a new cool kid on the block when it comes to the Black Ops franchise as Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is heading to Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC this October.
This, of course, is no surprise to a lot of fans of the series as the Black Ops titles have consistently garnered praise from the gaming community for most years (although the release of Black Ops 3 was a little messy).
Just because there it is unsurprising that another Black Ops is releasing, it does not mean that the game is without some of its biggest secrets that can actually make or break the entire franchise.
These are features and options that can divide the fan base into a frenzy, which will make Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 a true gamble for the developers at Treyarch and the publishers at Activision.
That makes these following facts and truths about the game useful to anyone looking to purchase the game or be a part of its community when the game releases.
What will return? What will be new? We have the answers here with 20 things that we know about Black Ops 2.
25 No Campaign
All right. Let us start with the one piece of information that has angered almost all of the gaming community and has shattered a tradition that has been a part of the console/PC market for the last few generations.
Yeah, they were mainly a side note when it came to in-game discussions but it does not mean that it was not a main part of the appeal.
It is the resoundingly questionable choice of leaving out a solo campaign with playable missions that feature an arching storyline. Why is this decision so questionable? Well, the real answer is that despite the fact that multiplayer action and online capabilities have been the main draw for the Call of Duty series, the single-player campaign mode was always a staple for most fans. Yeah, they were mainly a side note when it came to in-game discussions but it does not mean that it was not a main part of the appeal. The entire cinematic feel of Call of Duty: Black Ops has slowly degraded into a shallow pool of nothingness. We were once treated to a plethora of talented voice actors and cleverly pieced-together storylines, but we only have a variable Zombies mode that may (or may not) feature some deep storytelling. Again, this list is all about things we know, and all we know is that the campaign is just gone.
24 Specialist Characters Return
Ah yes, the most unpopular decision of Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 has returned as yet another part of the online multiplayer mode and it seems like it is here to stay for the rest of the franchise’s longevity. Specialist characters provided a somewhat asymmetrical multiplayer mode by adding some abilities and handicaps to certain players of each team to spice up the matches. Some were quick to welcome the change and found the abilities to be a progressive move in the grand scheme of the franchise. Others were disgusted with the frankly appalling set of new additions that disrupted what they considered to be “classic COD.”
Well, regardless of how you feel about it, the specialists have returned for another title in the series and while they may not be as big of a selling point this year, Treyarch has made it obvious they have worked on improving the feature. Whether or not it actually makes a positive impact on the game’s release will be a long-time coming, but the fans can rest assured knowing that there will probably be a handful of modes (if not, at least one) that do not feature the specialist characters. Do not think that that is all we know when it comes to the specialist characters...
23 May Not Have Paid Maps
Now onto the good news. It might seem like every Call of Duty in this era of gaming has been utterly disappointing, but there seems to be an actual change coming our way in terms of progressing the series forward.
Due to the massive success of the free-to-play game Fortnite: Battle Royale (which we will get to later), we may have a brand new way to give out the many different kinds of content that a game can offer. First, there has been absolutely no news of a possible season pass, which goes against the grain of natural Call of Duty tropes and while there is no guarantee we will not get an announcement at E3, it would be a huge surprise if it all got thrown on the fan base at once. See, the lack of a season pass and some of the other Black Ops news (which we WILL get to) has led us to believe that the multiplayer being given out at a paid fee might be a thing of the past. The game will apparently get an unprecedented amount of weekly, monthly, and daily support when it comes to new content so perhaps Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 might be a telling sign that can mark a new beginning for the entire franchise.
22 No Minimap
Well, not exactly, but let us explain. For the longest time, the miniature map in the top left (or right) of the on-screen HUD has been an essential part of the online multiplayer component. Why? It might be seen as a straight crutch for a lot of the less experienced players in the community but take one look at any professional competitive multiplayer game of COD and you will see that it is a true staple to the momentum of an online match. This has been because the mini-map covers a large area that highlights enemies making noises on the map and generally speeds up the pace of the match and provides for exciting opportunities for skilled characters to strategically reveal their location on the map in the game.
This year, Treyarch has decided to nerf the mini-map in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, as players, will only be able to see highlighted enemies IF they were to be in the line of sight of the actual character. That might sound ridiculous in terms of a change that was not asked for, but it might make for a more exciting game. This will put the emphasis of the in-game combat on actual gun-fighting as opposed to positioning. Some will find this as a bad change, some will find it to be good. All we know is that it is a huge change, nonetheless.
21 Will Feature Some Wild Killstreaks
It was a quick descent into the not-so-great, as Treyarch has decided to continue with the futuristic setting that continues to alienate a vast majority of the fanbase.
While on paper it seems like a good way to allow for more creative freedom, most fans just want to see the classic “boots to the ground” combat that made Call of Duty so initially iconic.
Sure, some of the younger parts of the Call of Duty audience could not care any less about the time frame of the game. However, there are still a lot of fans that are upset with this aspect of the new entries of the franchise. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 takes place in the not-so-distant future and will feature futuristic weapons and technology to be used in the many modes of the game. While it may not be a huge selling point like the other modes, fans cannot deny the fact that the futuristic setting allows for a huge creative excuse for the developing staff to add in some experimental items and power-ups along with conceptual weapons that are on the blueprints of actual weapons dealers. While on paper it seems like a good way to allow for more creative freedom, most fans just want to see the classic “boots to the ground” combat that made Call of Duty so initially iconic. That is not the end of this article’s information on the dating of this game as it has a very funny place in the chronological order.
20 Zombies Heroes Will Return
Miss the swearing of Tank Dempsey in the zombies mode of Call of Duty? How about the socialist ramblings of Nikolai? Or the insane rampage quotes of Dr. Richtofen? And last but not least, do you miss the Japanese soldier Takeo? Well, have no fear, as the loveable band of zombies protagonists is going to be returning. It is said that they will be playable characters in the zombies mode to a limited degree, but it will probably be something of a limited role in comparison to the new cast of characters in the game. The main point here to take away is going to be the fact that while the old band of characters has been confirmed to be in the game, they are not one of the bestselling points to take away from the debut presentation of the game. This means that they will probably be more of a nostalgia act for the entirety of the game will be online and based on the other two game modes. It just stands out as one of the unique ways that the fine folk at Treyarch is trying to garner some positive feedback for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4.
19 Set Between Black Ops 2 And 3
The new Black Ops game actually falls between the narrative of Black Ops 2 and Black Ops 3. If it sounds redundant than be prepared to hear more about the rehashing of old ideas when it comes to Call of Duty. Not much is known about the game in terms of story or how the main narrative will work as there is no campaign and thus, no story trailer. We can take away that the story will take a backseat to the “innovative” game modes that will take the focus in the main game. As mentioned, some will be frustrated with some of these decisions that Treyarch has gone with, it seems like they have no care in the world when it comes to the Black Ops franchise that has lost its luster to a severe degree.
This has got to be one of the main reasons why the story of Black Ops has become so uninteresting. There will be almost no attention given to the past lore that was established for half of the franchise. No, instead we will get a carbon copy of the other popular game that has only become successful due to hip marketing and universally playable mechanics. This is just another reminder of how Call of Duty has lost their way.
18 Health Packs Introduced
Now it might seem like there are a bunch of things that are placing this Black Ops installment in the bottom of the ranking list in terms of importance. There is already a brand new feature that is not really brand new but it is new in terms of how the other Call of Duty games are played, It is the reintroduction of health systems in multiplayer. While it may not be an exactly surprising addition to the game, it still surprised a lot of the fanbase as it was not asked for on any level, to any degree.
Seeing as there is no real indication of new weaponry, there will not be much of a big difference in how the game is played.
Basically, the multiplayer will be based on finding health packs as opposed to waiting for health to just regenerate back after a gunfight. It does change the pacing of the game and provide a new obstacle for anyone in a close fight, but it also puts a hard emphasis on the map structure. This mimics the mechanics of Overwatch as the game will have a focus on team fighting and coordination with the composition (which is set by the specialist in this case). Seeing as there is no real indication of new weaponry, there will not be much of a big difference in how the game is played. But this is still a huge feature to the multiplayer that may even get patched out later.
17 No Dashes
So health packs are back and it would look like dashes are out the window (no pun intended). Characters used to be able to do a brief dash in any direction as they pleased but this will be removed from Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. This will mean that the gameplay will slow down dramatically when it comes to the online multiplayer mode, but it will also mean that the main people in charge of COD might be slowly coming around to the idea of returning back to the classic combat (as if COD: WW2 was not enough to provide evidence of this). It might seem like a really small change, but it is these small tweaks that make the biggest difference when it comes to the grand scheme of how the game will be received by the public. Slowing down the game will be a great decision in the long run as there is a niche crowd for COD and they know how they want their game. This is a step in the right direction by appeasing the fans and that means that Call of Duty might get the reinjection of adrenaline and reclaim its role as the number one online multiplayer game.
16 Return Of A Zombie Map
It is going to be a great time when it comes to revisiting an old zombies map from Call of Duty: Black Ops 2. Mob Of The Dead was one of the best maps to ever be offered in a COD game that featured the survival mode.
The story of a bunch of inmates in Alcatraz trying to assemble a makeshift airplane to soar from the prison to safety. It had so many different aspects that made it unique like the Hellhounds and secret weapons to find. It was a thrilling time and fans will fondly remember using the acid shotgun or hearing the celebrity voice acting of celebrities like Michael Madsen and Ray Liotta. While the celebrities will not be returning for the game, the map will be coming back and should be even better with the fast-paced overhaul of the COD engine. This also serves as one of the few times that the Call of Duty franchise brings back an old aspect into the fray, something that immediately pleases the fans as they are happy to see their favorite aspects of the game return. Get ready to lock and load with your friends to escape Alcatraz once more!
15 Better PC Support
This one is definitely more of a conceptual entry as there is no way to document its exact traits. All we know is that Treyarch has made it clear that the PC version of the game will get more attention as they will look to get into the streaming game, no doubt. Of course, Call of Duty has already been a juggernaut on streaming services like Twitch, but it always had a bit of difficulty becoming a serious PC game.
The series has always been associated with console systems and the new wave of cross-platform video games have been an amazing force for the gaming community. Cross-platform will probably not come to Black Ops 4 but the PC side of the community will finally get the attention they deserve. In the years prior to this release, Call of Duty games on PC have been difficult to play because of the way that glitches and exploits can be found in the arguably toxic community. These have plagued the game before and fans have begged for the game developers to pay attention to the balancing of the game. PC players might even have the upper hand when it comes to competitive play in the coming months after the release.
14 Playable Characters Story
The returning specialist characters will be getting a whole new way to explore their unique origins in Black Ops 4 by way of a set of playable missions with the characters.
All we know is that they should feature a co-op style of play much like the special ops mode from Modern Warfare 2 only that these will require more than 2 people.
They should be able to dive deep into the stories of a lot of these characters and while it is not exactly a full-on replacement for the campaign that is so desperately missed by the community already, it is a good way to provide some depth to the game’s modes. There is not much on how these missions will play out, but there are a lot of different characters that will be introduced in the game so one has to assume that Black Ops 4 will be planting the seeds for a lot of characters that could resonate with the fan base. All we know is that they should feature a co-op style of play much like the special ops mode from Modern Warfare 2 only that these will require more than 2 people. Some have discussed how the specialist characters have introduced an element of asymmetrical multiplayer that goes against the grain of what Call of Duty stands for, but this blend of story and gameplay may prove to be a fun addition to the game.
13 Designed For Friends
Now, this might seem like a surprise for a lot of people, but Call of Duty is about to step into the world of online gaming in a completely different way. It will be a huge move for the franchise as they have been primarily comfortable with having a shark-infested water of a community. Now, Black Ops 4 is said to be designed for the sake of finding friends in the community and making a couple of squadmates that can link up for a while. Usually, we see a pretty standard set of solo queueing players that go head to head in an attempt to be the best.
Now, we will see a brand new way that the game will encourage the players to be friendlier with each other and have fun as a unit. It might sound corny for a lot of the intense players that focus on which character to take out next, but it should make for a better experience on the game. It is a good thing, too, as it will help the game clean up the image of the way the community is looked at. We do not expect to have all the tea bagging and crude in-game content removed, but it is a good step in the right direction.
12 First To Be Released In October Since…
Call of Duty 2 was the last time that a game in the franchise was released in October. It may seem like a relatively small difference in terms of how the game is supposed to roll out, but it means more to the fan base than one could imagine. First, we have not had a Call of Duty game release in October since 2003.
This means that has been an astounding fifteen years since a game released in the Halloween month, with every other title pretty much finding a November or December release date to comply with the holiday schedule. Second, this may mean that an emphasis on content is being placed before an emphasis on release. It may seem redundant, but what it means is that Treyarch may look to finally give this game a real close sense of attention that has been relatively unseen in the franchise for a while now. The game will not be concerned with rushing to meet a deadline and instead, has placed itself ahead of the competition in terms of release dates. Remaining questions include whether or not the game can actually live up to the hype of its divisive reveal trailer and if its October release date is really set in stone…
11 No 3rd Person
It is almost unheard of to see Call of Duty get into the third person camera for any of their installments but it has happened a few times before.
Most notably, in team tactical modes in Modern Warfare 2 that saw somewhat of a precursor to games like Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six: Siege. Although there is a battle royale mode in this year’s iteration of the infamous Black Ops series, there will be no third person option for the players. This would be a move very similar in vein to Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds and how that game works with an option to switch between the two camera angles. Nope, this battle royale will be all first person, which should make for a relentlessly fast-paced game mode. This might come off as a bit of a disappointment for fans looking for a way to shake up the way that the Call of Duty series is played. However, the important thing to keep in mind is that keeping the first person camera will mean that the game will never leave its original FPS roots and stray into the unknown. This will be a perfect mix of old and new that should make for a pretty fun experience.
10 Specialist Edition
Now, this next one may not be a huge surprise for a lot when it comes the way that each Call of Duty game is rolled out every year but it is something that deserves to be noted.
Among some of the extras that are included in this version are a steel book case for the game, some extra in-game currency, a small statue, and some bonus DLC content.
A leak from an Australian game company has revealed that there will be a special edition of the game that will feature some goodies. Among some of the extras that are included in this version are a steel book case for the game, some extra in-game currency, a small statue, and some bonus DLC content. It might be a stretch for us to expect anything too fancy or groundbreaking when it comes to what can be included in the game but it still a neat way for the game to be released. Some have said that it is a cheap way to cash in on the fanbase but seeing as they have consistently become a part of the way that the gaming community gets their favorite titles it will not go away any time soon. We know that a few people will be ready to shell out some extra cash for that statue and steel book, but it is unfortunate it will not have a little remote controlled car like Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 did.
9 Zombie Daily
This time around, zombies mode will be getting a brand new kind of attention that it has not received, despite the fact that it has been screaming for it since then. When it comes to the way that games are catching fire, it is clear that the games that utilize the online capabilities to every extent are the ones that grow a consistent community. That is why the zombies mode will get a set of online challenges and rewards like customizable options for the loadouts in the game. This might seem like a relatively small way that the developers at Treyarch can make to the mode but it should result in a totally new way that the game is broadcasted on sites like Twitch and YouTube.
Now, when it comes to the way that people view zombies gameplay footage, they will not just be looking at the way they use the in-game weapons to fight off zombies, but they will also be looking at the different sets of challenges they can complete. Do not sleep on the way that the zombies mode could take the gaming community by storm when Black Ops 4 drops because it could really beat out the competition. Well, most of it.
8 Zombie Customization
Zombies mode has always been a treasured survival mode for a lot of the fans of the COD series since World at War hit the shelves. In its first incarnation, it was just up to four players holding up in a two-story building with a random weapon generating box fighting off an endless horde of Nazi Zombies.
Since then, we have had crazy inventions like teleporters, gravity bombs, alien ray guns, playable historical figures, and a whole slew of intricately written lore hidden within the confines of each map that has been featured in the legendary mode. Black Ops 2 was the first to introduce some customizable aspects like changing the difficulty and the intensity of the waves that the player wants to start with. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 will now feature a new host of features and settings that can result in hundreds of different variants. Seeing how the zombies mode will be featuring a daily set of challenges and its own rewards separate from the multiplayer, zombies mode might be on track to finally catch its second wind as a must-play for all kinds of gamers. This could be the start of something that could change the way people look at COD and it might become the cool kid on the block again. Keyword: might.
7 Fans Aren't Happy
That is right. The fans are livid. Fans all over the world have been upset with Call of Duty since the collapse of its tried and true formula with Advanced Warfare. That was the moment that the franchise stopped trying to replicate the real-life simulation of warfare and decided to take their leap into the futuristic science fiction genre. This has continuously put off fans of the series as they have asked for the classic “boots to the ground” gameplay to return and despite there being a resounding amount of complaints from the fans, it will not be returning for Black Ops 4.
As mentioned, there will not be that much in terms of high-tech sci-fi equipment in the game but it definitely does not take place in the 70s like Black Ops. The gaming community is not exactly easy to please but it has been plainly obvious that the game needs to return to its roots and just stay away from the futuristic setting as a whole. This would allow for the fans to catch their breath and get an appreciation for the high-tech environment as the fans have not got a chance to get tired of the classic style of combat. Fortnite has shown us that it is not about maximizing the scope of a game but perfecting it.
6 It Isn’t MW2
This one probably seems like an obvious entry for many, but it has deeper repercussions that could be a factor for COD fans later on this year.
So why does it matter that Black Ops 4 is not Modern Warfare 2?
Modern Warfare 2 might be the greatest first-person shooter of all-time and its scorching popularity and massive cult following has been a testament to just how perfect of a game it was. That is why there has been a slow-cooking desire from the vast majority of the fanbase to finally see the game re-released or remastered for the current generation of gaming. Well, if the rumors were to be true, then we will see a MW2 remaster hit the shelves later this Fall or Winter. Most fans will remember the entire debacle of the Modern Warfare re-release that saw a stuttered success due to the erroneously large paywall that required would-be MW gamers to pay the full price of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. So why does it matter that Black Ops 4 is not Modern Warfare 2? Well, to put it simply, MW2 is the game that the fans want while BO4 is the game that they are going to get. It is just another example of how Activision want their money before they want to please the fans. It is a business, right?
5 1st Competition
For the first time in a long time, it seems like Call of Duty is playing catch up with the rest of the world as it has slipped in terms of popularity and overall importance in the mainstream culture. Despite the success of many esports tournaments, it would appear as though COD has found itself at a crossroads. They have to struggle with stiff competition coming from Red Dead Redemption 2, Overwatch, and Fortnite, as it will be difficult for Call of Duty to get back into the fray. Sure, Grand Theft Auto V has been the money-maker for the last few years, but the writing is on the wall for most GTA fans and there is already talk of a sequel for that game so it is time to start looking to the future. But if we can be real for a second, Fortnite is the kid to beat. That game has completely destroyed the competition and consistently appeases the community with constant updating and new content. Can Black Ops 4 compete with Fortnite? Well, that is a two-sided question. Call of Duty may never have the youthful and hot-topic appeal of Fortnite, but Call of Duty may have a reinvigoration with this title. Keyword: MAY.
4 Takes Place In The Future
It might seem cliché at this time, but Call of Duty is heading back to the future. Yes, bring your DeLoreans and almanacs, we are heading back to the not-so-distant future. What does this mean for the franchise?
Well, we will probably see a lot of futuristic technology and scorestreaks that reflect on this kind of motif but it also means that Call of Duty is going to continue to push the boundaries of taste with this futuristic setting. It could mean that the game developers want to stick to the setting that they put for themselves when Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 released but most thought that COD games being set in the future was a thing of the past. Ironically, futuristic settings have become old and stale for the majority of the Call of Duty fanbase and they have consistently clamored for at least a setting that replicates modern warfare (TAKE THE HINT, TREYARCH). That should not distract the people that are reading this article from the next entry as, despite the fact that the next Call of Duty is going to be set in the future, it is STILL not a much-deserved sequel…
3 15th COD
That is right. We have been through fifteen different iterations of the Call of Duty series and have watched it grow from an obscure war game to the biggest cornerstone of the console gaming market. What does this mean for the franchise? Well, it probably means that it is here to stay as a consistent part of the gaming world, but it also means that Black Ops 4 is somewhat of an early entry in the grand scheme of things. That is why it is important to list all of these entries that showcase some of the newest features because these features could hold the cards that tell us what the future is like for the COD series.
All of the new aspects of the game are a perfect middle ground between being familiar but daring at the same time. Of course, the battle royale mode is a definite sign that COD will have no problem riding trends to keep itself relevant. Whether or not it will pay off, remains to be seen. Seeing as E3 is going on right now, we are expecting a whole bunch of different information to trickle down from the event itself, and the 15th Call of Duty is making its way for another massive release, no doubt.
2 Won’t Be WWII
It might go without saying, but seeing as Black Ops 4 is set in the near future, it will not be returning to the historical segments of the game. This sets it completely far from the World War 2 setting of Call of Duty: WWII. That game was supposed to be the beginning of the new era of COD that would see the way that the new generation of graphics and engines that could overhaul the tried and true formula of the boots to the ground warfare.
It just comes across as a strange way to release the games, as it leaves the fans at a divide that may have a negative impact on the community. Could having a futuristic COD and a retro-inspired one be the best way for Sledgehammer and Treyarch to continue the series? We will not exactly know until Black Ops 4 finally releases, but the fact that it is set in the future is set in stone. However, the door is open for a few flashback missions in the specialist missions that were mentioned before. Not to mention, it still has not been really made clear if the game’s battle royale mode will have a canonical place in the overall story arc of the game.
1 Battle Royale Mode
That is right.
So why is it that Call of Duty is trying to replicate the success of another game for the first time in its illustrious history as one of the top franchises?
The mode that has taken the entire gaming culture by storm with its frenetic multiplayer and enticing experience that draws in a crowd of all ages and skills. For those that are either living under rocks or just want a refresher of just what the battle royale type game mode is; it is a free-for-all mode that emphasizes on the lobby size and large-scale multiplayer over intricate balancing. The main two juggernauts in this field have been Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds and Fortnite: Battle Royale. The two have been the mainstay when it comes to battle royale action but there are a few clones and popular games that are similar in style and respect.
So why is it that Call of Duty is trying to replicate the success of another game for the first time in its illustrious history as one of the top franchises? Because no one can deny the impact, success, and popularity of the aforementioned games. Not much is known when it comes to the exciting new mode except for the fact that a few of the playable characters from the story will be returning as a skin for the characters in the mode. But what we know is that battle royale in COD is coming, and it may change the face of gaming as we know it itself.