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How Call of Duty Is Changing For Next Gen
So here it is. Activision has made official what we all have known for months: Call of Duty: Ghosts will be released this year in November, starting a new chapter for the franchise separate to the giant Modern Warfare series. While many will have instantly dismissed it as “yet another Call of Duty game,” as the general views towards the series from within many circles has become soured, others will have had their interests peaked by the news that the game will be different than the previous games in the series. What has brought about this change? A press release says that Infinity Ward saw their opportunity to change because of the incoming next generation of games console. This game will be unique and revolutionary for the franchise. How do we know?
My first and most obvious clue to how Ghosts will change the Call of Duty franchise is the new engine. Many a criticism has been thrown the way of the series for the lack of a new engine for any of this current generation’s games. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare through to Black Ops II have all used the IW engine. The engine was first used in Call of Duty 2 in 2005. That’s eight years without a new engine being developed. While the developers touted its ability to cope with the progression of games on the platform regardless of its age, Battlefield fans got beautiful graphics with each iteration which is sure to have made even the most stalwart of Call of Duty fans glance in envy. Now, with Ghosts, Activision have promised that Infinity Ward, who developed the IW engine, will debut a brand new engine. This has already turned a few heads with some excited by the fact that there is finally a revolution in the game and others still skeptical of the promises until finally proven. The problem with the engine is that if it is completely new and pretty, will it be used for the whole of the next generation? Surely not.
There was a teaser trailer released for Ghosts that was full of masked individuals through history such as Knights, Gladiators and Samurais along with a narrator who describes the reasons for wearing masks. The imagery of these warriors followed by the apparent protagonists in Call of Duty: Ghosts is probably a reference to the characters being warriors but in addition to that, could it be signifying the strength in which the game is being approached? While this is a fairly basic teaser trailer, it is dramatic and it is sure to drum up a large amount of interest for the game. Here is the video:
Now if you compare this trailer to those of Black Ops II trailers, such as the “Surprise” trailer,they are not as serious, dramatic or nearly as exciting as the one shown for Ghosts. This is showing how there is a new approach to the next generation. There is no more of the resting on their laurels for Infinity Ward and Activision like we have seen in other games where they are happy to show big explosions, title the trailers with Modern Warfare and rake in the cash, they are going all out with the execution and the build up to the game.
Lastly, the box art really intrigued me. For instance, comparing the previous games’ box arts to the new game, there is the notable exception of any sort of weapon. Each and every installment featured, in some way, a gun on the front cover of the game as a sort of signature. The exclusion of one could mean either of two things. Firstly, there could be the implication that the mask is a weapon. Featuring extensively on all of the promotional images, the trailer and the box art itself, the mask is the main focus of each. No, I do not mean we will be running around using masks to hit people. More of a deeper Call of Duty game that features emotion and less of the run and gun nature of the previous games’ single player stories. But then again I could be wrong and it may just be used to hide horrific animation problems with faces, who knows?
What do you think about Call of Duty: Ghosts? Is the coming changes a great move for the franchise or is it too far gone from what we are comfortable with?