There was a time when I thought I was totally done with Call of Duty, and then there was another time when I thought I’d never care about a Battle Royale game. It’s funny how things work out isn’t it. And it further adds to the long list of things I just end up eating my own words about that seems to be growing at an exponential rate.
Right now, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is probably the shooter I’m playing the most. The Overwatches, the Destinys and the Apex Legendses all left relatively untouched for the last month or much longer in some cases. It’s in part due to CoD’s competitive multiplayer that I’m having a lot of fun with, but what’s really shocked me is just how much I’ve gotten into the game’s battle roayle mode; Warzone, which has been the game to get my gaming crew back together after all falling off Destiny months ago.
As much as I’m enjoying it all though, I can’t help but think how this new state of affairs is going to change or not change when it comes time for Activision to churn out the next annual entry in their Call of Duty franchise. A franchise that has been chugging along since 2005 without a break. Because, honestly I don’t really feel like we need another game right now.
All of the other big Battle Royale games work using a pretty similar system; they use a free to play, pay for premium, seasonal based format. Fortnite, Apex Legends and even Call of Duty works this way. While the main game is a premium priced product, the Warzone mode is a free download. I wondered about this and half wrote an article discussing it all, and then, as if reading my mind from across the globe, Activision themselves came out with a statement.
Going forward, Warzone is going to be a constant in all future Call of Duty releases, which only makes sense considering how popular it’s been. But now my ponderings shift in a new direction and I wonder just how connected Warzone is going to continue to be to the setting and era of any new given Call of Duty game. For example, if the next game in the franchise returns to World War II, will Warzone’s weapons, location and care packages also change accordingly?
2020’s entry in the Call of Duty franchise hasn’t been announced as of yet, chances are, it’s going to be something very different from 2019’s game. The chances of it being a Modern Warfare 2 are slim to none, considering the three studio structure they work with.
So if we get a game in a totally new setting, how it that going to affect Warzone? A mode with a very era specific set of guns, killstreak rewards and vehicles. Are they going to remodel everything to match the new game’s setting? Or are they going to just throw sense to the wind and mash it all up in some weird fractured time clash of every front of war at the same time? Something I wouldn’t be opposed to.
Personally, I feel like it’s time for Activision to just break these ever growing chunks of game and release them all as separate titles. As much as I’ve enjoyed Call of Duty this year, it’s been an absolute nightmare when it comes to its ballooning size and the amount of patches you need to download, and then redownload when the new one breaks an old one. Modern Warfare is currently taking 176 gig of space on my hard drive. That’s nuts.
As the game stands, it is broken up into separate files within the system itself. But in my experience, it’s been inconsistent and still seems to cross contaminate. I deleted the campaign off my hard drive once and then the game refused to let me play tee online multiplayer again until I downloaded it again. So now I feel chained to having the whole thing on my Xbox at once.
A lot of the talk surrounding the upcoming generation of consoles talks about much more intelligent ways of storing and compartmentalising games that have multiple modes such as Call of Duty does. So this is a problem that might already be well on its way to having a solution. But if Warzone is going to be a constant going forward, I honestly feel like Activiaion should do what people have been wanting them to do for years and just start selling the chunks of their games separately.
Especially if Warzone is going to continue to be a free download, separate from the premium priced other content from the franchise. There’s no reason the two games can’t cross promote still, with whatever the most recent Call of Duty is being a major update inspiration to whatever is currently going on in that year’s four seasons of Call of Duty. Hell, they forced everyone to make a Activision account, just have that battle pass share through all different sections of the game.
In the end, this is just one more person complaining about storage solutions as video games continue to get larger and larger in size. But Call of Duty has been especially guilty of it as we reach the end of this console generation. And as a person with slow internet these days, I feel like the amount of time we need to spend waiting for our games down become playable is getting out of hand, and I guess this one was just the straw that broke the camel’s back.