The anticipation is finally over. Call of Duty Black Ops 2 has officially been confirmed by Activision.
A couple weeks ago we saw a rumor that Modern Warfare 4 (presumably next year’s Call of Duty game) was already under development, but that rumor was quickly refused by both Activision and voice actor Bill Murray, with whom it had started. Now however we’ve spotted a hiring add from Sledgehammer Games on Gamasutra which seems pretty strongly indicative of the next Call of Duty game. The ad reads, “We are actively recruiting top talent for our Call of Duty development team. If you are passionate and driven to do your best work, and have a desire to work on the most successful FPS franchise in the history of video games, please apply online.”
So there you have it. That doesn’t confirm whether the game will be called Modern Warfare 4 or not, but it seems a pretty solid confirmation that the game exists. Not only that, but the ad also reads that the applicant who fills the position “Will be expected to create single player and multiplayer levels under the direction of the art director and the creative director,” and also, “… Will insure that the level works on all relevant platforms, Xbox 360, PS3.”
The e-zine Siliconera has also recently published a report which cites a “reliable source” as saying that voice work has started on a title currently known only as “Call of Duty 2013.” There is again nothing about it being called “Modern Warfare 4.” Whether the reliable source is truly reliable or not, there’s no way to know of course, though it seems pretty obvious that there will certainly be a Call of Duty game next year and that Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer will be taking care of it. While Modern Warfare 4 is the most likely direction for them to take, we’re not 100% sure that’s what they’ll do, given what happened with Modern Warfare 3. MW3 did well, but not as well as it could’ve, with the main complaint from gamers and critics being that the series had gotten staid and kept rehashing the exact same formula. Considering how well Black Ops 2 is performing (a contrastingly innovative title), it seems reasonable to predict that Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer may follow their lead and do something a little different this year.
It’s annoying to those of us who aren’t playing Black Ops 2, but it’s pretty obvious now that the rumors about the release date breaking in Europe are true. It seems that gamers in Slovakia and maybe some other locations as well have managed to get their hands on copies of the next Call of Duty game early, probably as a result of stocking errors. This happens pretty often with video games, so no big surprise. A number of videos have started cropping up on YouTube showing footage of the zombies modes and other gameplay. The videos so far have all been low in quality, but still pretty interesting. Unfortunately if you go looking for them you’ll probably only find a notice like this: “The video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Activision Publishing, Inc.”
On the bright side, at least you probably won’t catch any spoilers. There are probably a lot of surprises in store for us, so we just need to wait a little bit longer. If you still haven’t pre-ordered, this is the time! Otherwise you’ll miss out on the Nuketown 2025 map and other pre-order bonuses.
Kill Confirmed is a game mode that was introduced in Modern Warfare 3 for multiplayer. The intention behind the game mode was simple; by making it part of the objective for players to get out in the open to do a task (collecting dog tags from fallen enemies), the game would compel campers to come out of hiding. Of course, as with many objective games, the problem wasn’t really solved by the intent. While it was a good idea, players weren’t rewarded extra points toward their killstreaks for picking up the tags. The result is that campers kept on camping and let their teammates carry out the objectives for them.
It was recently announced that Black Ops 2 is also going to feature Kill Confirmed, but with some important modifications to the way that scoring works. Players will be rewarded more for picking up dog tags than simply for killing enemy players. In fact, the points received for getting a dog tag off an opponent you’ve killed will be equivalent to the amount you’ll get for a kill, so in terms of scoring there will be just as much motivation to collect the dog tags as there is to kill off opponents. You can also get some points for picking up dog tags off opponents your team mates have killed or for preventing enemies from picking up dog tags from fallen comrades.
So far there hasn’t been any word as to whether Kill Confirmed will be updated on Modern Warfare 3 to include the new scoring system, but there seems to be no reason why it shouldn’t. Maybe the update will come out before Black Ops 2 (which is due to come out on November 13th), or maybe they will wait until it’s been tested out on Black Ops 2 to see whether it’s worth releasing a patch for MW3. Either way, hopefully it will make a difference for players on both games.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 received a playlist update on the first of October which includes two new game modes. One of them, Hardcore Face-Off, requires no explanation. The other game mode is called Money in the Denk, and is based on the Sabotage mode that gamers are already familiar with. With Money in the Denk, a bomb is planted with a timer which counts down starting at 2 minutes. If the enemy team is able to diffuse the bomb, it will restart its count and endanger the other team. Both game modes will require ample teamwork for success. The Money in the Denk mode was based off of custom settings which many players have been using in order to modify Sabotage over recent months. Now players will be able to use those settings automatically and save time. Check out the video below to get a look at the two new gamemodes!
Activision has temporarily pulled down a map which is usually available to players of Modern Warfare 2 and Modern Warfare 3. The map is called Favela and takes place in a town in Rio de Janiro. In the map there is a bathroom, which has a couple of paintings, one of which includes a quotation from Muhammad on the frame: “Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty.” Muslim gamers protested, saying that the presence of the quotation in a bathroom was offensive, and that it should be removed.
Activision has taken down the map so that the texture on that part of the wall can be replaced, and will then put the map back up so that players can access it again. “We apologize to anyone who found this image offensive,” an Activision rep told Kotaku. “Please be assured we were unaware of this issue and that there was no intent to offend. We are working as quickly as possible to remove the image and any similar ones we may find from our various game libraries.”
While the presence of the quotation in the bathroom may have shocked some gamers, it is relatively easy to see why it was probably a simple mistake with no malicious intent on the parts of the programmers. Maps are often designed in orders which make sense to their developers; for example, the textures may have been placed in the room well before it was decided the room would be a bathroom in that part of the building. It’s also likely the programmers didn’t even realize that a quotation from Muhammad would be offensive in a bathroom, considering that in other religious traditions, a similar quotation would be acceptable (numerous bathrooms are adorned with Christian quotations). The mistake should soon be remedied, and the map made available again.
Those of us who love picking up a virtual gun and mowing down our enemies have always suspected it, but now it’s been demonstrated in an actual scientific research study: FPS games like Call of Duty make their players faster and smarter. After all, how could they not? Playing FPS games well demands all kinds of speed, precision, reaction time, improvisation, and tactics. There’s a learning curve with FPS games like there is with anything else. To play a game like Call of Duty and net a lot of kills and objectives, you obviously start out pretty shabby and get a lot better the more you play.
Researchers at theUniversityofRochester have discovered that the improvements to reflexes, sensory intake, and other aspects of cognition extend beyond the virtual world. Not only did they discover that Call of Duty gamers’ reaction times improved as they played, but also that gamers became better at retaining sensory information. In challenges outside of the game where gamers were shown sensory information and asked to recall it later, COD veterans performed better than COD newbies. Not only that, but it was also shown that it really only takes a few weeks of gameplay at an hour per day in order for performance at these challenges to start improving. This means that COD and similar games are efficient learning tools which can quickly improve a person’s overall cognitive abilities.
Why are these game so great for improving cognition? It may be because they require gamers to think on their feet. While there wasn’t any more information available about the study at theUniversityofRochester, we have our own thoughts on this. How many decisions do you technically make while you’re playing through a typical COD map on multiplayer mode? The first thing you have to do is size up your location; this gets easier the more you play a specific map of course, but even after you’ve played a map a long time, you probably are constantly finding new ways you can utilize your surroundings tactically to drive up your score.
So you’re analyzing your environment on the fly. You’re also analyzing your opponents and figuring out who is attacking you using which strategies. You are responding to your opponents in this overall way, while also reacting immediately to their attacks as they happen—all while seeking out opportunities to go on the offensive. You’re keeping an eye on your scorestreaks and calling them in effectively, utilizing other technology, and so on.
You’re not only watching the screen, but also looking for additional sensory input. You might hear an opponent before you see one, or hear a fight nearby which you can join in. You’re constantly making decisions about which weapons to use and how best to use them in any set of circumstances. All the while you’re keeping an eye on health and ammo gauges and picking up things you need from your surroundings. Circumstances are always changing and every single game presents unique challenges. So every time you play, even if you’ve played a thousand times, you find unique solutions, and you find them on the fly.
The most amazing thing is probably that most people can establish strong rhythms while playing Call of Duty and other FPS games which are almost unconsciously ingrained. After all, if you actually try to consciously think through all those decisions verbally in your mind, you’re probably just going to get shot. You have to be lightning fast with decisions and deeply intuitive. So ultimately these games train you not only how to be inventive and adaptive, but how to do it on a deep level. Next time your parents or significant other or someone else you live with harangues you about all the time you spend glued to Call of Duty, show them the research! Call of Duty really does make you smarter.
While we get to enjoy a new Call of Duty title each year, sometimes the year-long wait can seem interminable, especially in the final months. If you want some fresh new COD material to enjoy while you’re waiting for Black Ops 2 to come out on November 13th, head on over to these Call of Duty games which are free for you to play. These flash games expand on the COD experience by recreating the COD game in 2D, allowing you to face off with zombies in new maps and more. These games were created by fans like you who wanted to add to the COD universe.
Titles include Modern Warfare 2D, SAS: Zombie Assault 2 Insane Asylum, Call of Duty 2 Flash Version, Call of Duty 4 Sniper, Call of Duty Camper, Cloud to Ground Guardian, and others—more than a dozen in all. You do not need to download any software or install anything to play so long as you have Flash; the games load directly in your browser for instant action-packed fun. If you love the fan-made COD games on the site you may also enjoy fan-made Halo games and other titles which are available to play for free. Waiting for Black Ops 2 may seem tedious, but there is a lot of fun to be had in the meantime when you play fan-made Call of Duty flash games. Get yourself even more psyched for the big release in November and enjoy the creativity of other fans.
Parking your car in real life may not be a lot of fun, but parking cars, boats, and other vehicles in car-parking games can be an addictive and enjoyable way to spend your time. Some younger players enjoy car-parking games because it gives them a feel for parking before they have to learn to do it in real life (especially complex actions like parallel parking), while others enjoy the challenge of carrying out precise movements within a set time. If you want to find all the most exciting car parking games, head on over to ParkingGames.com.
You’ll find dozens of fun titles at this website include popular favorites like Parking Space, City Parking, Glamour Parking, Concert Parking, Parking Mania, Classic Car Parking, Learn 2 Park, Your Large Truck Parking, and Park My Big Rig. While these popular games can provide endless hours of car parking fun, there are always new games added to the website you can try if you want to do something a little different. Some of the newest titles to be added to ParkingGames.com include Park A Lot, Parking Perfection 2, Gas Station Parking, and Caveman Parking.
While car parking games are the most popular types of games on the sites, you’ll also find other categories to challenge you, such as truck, valet, and boat parking. Parking boats along docks is a unique twist on the genre which provides you with a whole different concept and intriguing challenges posed by the physics of the water, which impact your maneuverability. With valet parking, you not only have to park cars quickly, but you also have to deal with a wide variety of vehicles. You can get additional points by keeping customers happy and receiving tips for your valet service. There is also a miscellaneous category for special vehicles like race cars, extra long vehicles, and tanks. So park your browser at ParkignGames.com and enjoy hours of fun!
The latest in the popular series of arcade games, Bloons Tower Defense 5, has recently been introduced to gamers around the world, and is yet another hit. If you’re not already familiar with the Bloons Tower Defense series, this is a tactical arcade game in which monkeys go to war with deadly balloons known as bloons. In order to defend themselves, the monkeys must use towers which can take out bloons in different unique ways.
The latest Bloons Tower Defense is true to the previous installments of the series and delivers yet another fun experience in line with its predecessors. Some changes are noteworthy however, for example the fact that there are two brand new types of towers and also a new type of bloon which regenerates if you do not hit it quickly enough to kill it. There are also some changes to the way the towers work. Towers can be upgraded in 8 different ways, and bloons which are camoflauged have become more challenging enemies. There are also “secret agents,” which are items you can use once per round to fight off bloons. There is also a new uber-bloon known as a ZOMG. All in all, this is yet another addicting entry to the Bloons Tower Defense series, and is sure to satisfy fans who enjoyed the previous games and are looking for new challenges. So stop sitting around reading reviews and go get the game—new enemies and new towers await you.
Recently the Guardian reported that the Advertising Standards Authority has decided that a Modern Warfare 3 ad should not be shown during daytime hours. Previously the British Board of Film Classification had given the MW3 ad a PG certificate, which meant that it could be played during the daytime so long as it was not played during programs believed to appeal to youngsters under the age of 16. The ad’s classification also enabled stores to play it publicly on their screens.
Due to two viewer complaints however, the ASA has ruled that the ad should not be aired during daytime at all, and has banned it from television before 7:30 PM. The ads stated that children between the ages of two and four had viewed the ad during a football game and were frightened by the scenes of explosive destruction in New York City and London. Needless to say, this is pretty ridiculous (especially given that there were only two complaints—and aren’t parents responsible for monitoring what their children see to begin with?), although we can only hope it means that more people will take an interest in the game that was apparently just too hardcore for British daytime television viewing.