Call of Duty has been one of the most popular gaming franchises of all time, consistently being on lists of best-selling games, with its most dedicated players having been with the series since the release of the very first game back in 2003. With every release, the game grew in popularity, amassing one of the largest and most committed player bases of any franchise. However, with this commitment came high expectations from fans, so it was very important for the developers to ensure that the fans got what they wanted.
The height of its popularity no doubt peaked around the release of the first two Modern Warfare and Black Ops games, with players hailing that era of the game as the best there ever was. From the in-game mechanics to the gunplay and the ability to talk down to your opponents through an open mic, it was the best kind of chaos. However, with the release of Black Ops 3 in 2015, it was the beginning of the end for some. The addition of advanced movement mechanics made a large portion of the community rather upset, as since the game’s inception it had been only “boots on the ground” gameplay. The widespread opinion was that if people wanted anything else, games such as Battlefield existed to scratch that itch.
In 2019, the developers at Infinity Ward made the decision to reboot arguably the game that began the franchise’s rise to its dizzying popularity, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. This had fans going absolutely crazy as it promised the removal of the mechanic that had ostracized so many die-hard fans of the franchise and brought back the nostalgia of one of their favorite games. This game was so popular that it ended up beating all previous 3-day sales figures for every previous Call of Duty game.
Along with this came the release of Call of Duty: Warzone, which is the developers’ take on a battle royale. This put an interesting twist on the already well-established franchise and helped to bring in even more players who had never touched a Call of Duty game before, especially since Warzone itself is free. Modern Warfare was an absolute hit with fans and was the most played Call of Duty game since the release of Black Ops 2.
With the release of Modern Warfare 2 on the horizon, it’s easy to see how much scrutiny the developers could fall under. With Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II BETA keys for PS available, complaints from some of the most dedicated fans are already piling in. These range from the apparent lackluster utility of the new mini-map to the increased volume of footsteps, making it easier for enemies to know where you are coming from. However, for every player that has complaints, there are always those that love the game, with many that have been invited to test the beta claiming it is the best that Call of Duty has been in recent years.
It’s safe to say that the decision to reboot some of the most popular Call of Duty games of all time was the right decision for Activision and the development studios involved. Not only has it appeased more fans than ever, but it has caused more and more people to return to the franchise due to the nostalgia they feel from having played some of the previous games. Call of Duty seems to be back on the right path, but only time will tell if they are able to keep up the momentum, and with the release of the newest game around the corner, I guess we shall see.