Call of Duty is somewhat unique in the modern gaming space, which is funny considering the criticism aimed at it would have us believe it’s a generic unchanging mess. It’s special in the fact that it has such a huge penetration (stop thinking that) into a wider market than most games can hope to reach.
As such its in a position to do some really exciting things, but year after year we see them play it kind of safe. Setting the first BLACK OPS during the Cold War was a great move, and taking it to the future (2025 AD to be exact) in the sequel is even better, but that’s still not quite enough. We want MOAR!
Well, after a few hours of honest reflection, here’s a nice little list of what we’d like to see in CALL OF DUTY BLACK OPS 2 :
5) Focus on the Conflict
In its current state, CoD is a rampant globetrotter. You barely stay in the same place for more than a chapter at a time. Obviously this is quite effective at showing the scope of the conflict on a global scale, but it can leave the experience feeling disjointed.
There are many cases of this style of storytelling being captivating, Game of Thrones is a perfect example, but in Call of Duty I barely have enough time to learn the names of the people I’m fighting with before I’m whisked away to blow something up in another hemisphere. It would be great to follow a squad through one crazy day in battle, rather than jumping around all over the space time continuum.
4) Characters I Care About
This isn’t just a problem with Call of Duty, a lot of video games struggle with presenting endearing characters who can make me care about their motivations. The Modern Warfare offshoot of the CoD series had a couple of memorable characters, Soap, Price and Ghost but I was never really invested in them as people. In tandem with the previous point, a more personal conflict is exactly what is needed, placing as much emphasis on character arcs as exploding planes.
3) Do Something Progressive
It’s obvious that there are certain elements missing from the modern war shooter. Imagine you found Bigfoot in your basement and years of watching that Harry and the Hendersons tape has convinced you that it will be a good idea to integrate him into current day society. He wouldn’t be forgiven for believing that humans only existed in the male form and were bred by killing each other in explosions.
I would love to see a serious female character shown in one of these games who could hold her own with the best of the boys. They could do something even braver (and even more lacking in the current gaming landscape) and have a gay main character who isn’t a stereotype. With CoD’s massive fanbase, it would speak volumes about video games today if they could deal with such a sensitive issue in a mature way.
2) Sell Campaign and Multiplayer Separately
We’ve seen it before, with Killzone 3′s multiplayer being sold separately after launch but we’ve not seen a case where a retail game has been split into these two components at launch. This isn’t so much a serious point as an experiment that would definitely have interesting results.
With the dawn of Free to Play games in recent years, companies are accepting that the old business model may no longer be optimal. Many people would be interesting in just purchasing the Cod multiplayer at a discounted rate, similarly people may enjoy the campaign but feel $60 isn’t a fair price for a 5 hour campaign if they have no interest in the online multiplayer. By lowering the barrier to entry, they may reach an even wider audience.
1) Turn the Genre on its Head
Think how not only awesome it would be, but refreshing, if you were playing through the campaign that seemed like the same old same old. You’re fighting Russians or the Chinese or whoever has sued Activision recently and suddenly BOOM UFO all up in yo’ grill! It would be hilarious to have this serious, grounded, gritty war going on and then without skipping a beat an alien invasion brings everything crashing down around their ears. Again, I don’t think it would ever happen but damn, I can dream! EDF meets CoD? Yes please!
There we go, before you go biting my head off this article is just a bit of fun and while I would sincerely like to see the first three I understand that some of the things on this list are preposterous and will never happen. What would you like to see happen with the Call of Duty series, serious or not?