We have finally learned more about Call of Duty 2020, which will be Black Ops 5. Activision is shaking things up with the development of its newest game. There has apparently been a shift among the three developers who traditionally rotate roles each year.
Up to this point, studios Raven and Sledgehammer had led the project, but now it seems that Treyarch will be taking over leadership when it comes to developing the upcoming Black Ops 5, which is set to release in 2020. Since 2012, Activision has worked with the three studios by rotating in a three-year cycle for its lead studios, Infinity Ward, Treyarch, and Sledgehammer. Under this schedule, the following games have been produced with their corresponding leads:
- 2012 - Treyarch - Call of Duty: Black Ops II
- 2013 - Infinity Ward - Call of Duty: Ghosts
- 2014 - Sledgehammer - Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
- 2015 - Treyarch - Call of Duty: Black Ops III
- 2016 - Infinity Ward - Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
- 2017 - Sledgehammer - Call of Duty: WWII
- 2018 - Treyarch - Call of Duty: Black Ops IV
- 2019 - Infinity Ward - TBA
Apparently, Treyarch will be taking control of the creative leadership in the new Black Ops game. Meanwhile, Raven and Sledgehammer will act as support studios and will reportedly use their material to create their own single-player mode of a campaign for Black Ops 5. The game will possibly be cross-gen, though this is largely up to Sony, and will likely be released around the fall of 2020, which would match the release of the next PlayStation and Xbox consoles.
What does this sudden shift between developers mean? Some are already talking about the crunch that would be needed to complete a project in two years. If true, this news comes at a rather poor time, as many other studios are dealing with worker dissatisfaction when it comes to crunching, such as Rockstar Games, Riot Games, and NetherRealm Studios.
For now, the news is not officially confirmed and should be taken with a grain of salt. It would be useful to know exactly why such a decision was made, although in all likelihood the answer might pertain to a financial spreadsheet that shows which games have been most profitable and which studios could perhaps be thanked for that in an effort to repeat past success.
Hopefully, we will find out more about Call of Duty: Black Ops 5 soon.