In its celebrated history, the Call of Duty franchise shifted direction multiple times, starting with World War 2 before eventually transitioning to the present day with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and soaring into the future with Black Ops 2 and Advanced Warfare, both of which provided more high-tech gear than ever before. Of course, what better way to continue the trend than staying in the future with Call of Duty: Black Ops 3?
The game was first revealed last month through a lengthy teaser trailer, giving us a taste of what kind of battles the future holds. The game takes place in 2065, approximately 40 years after the events that took place in Black Ops 2. The lines between science and technology have been blurred, as more people rely on cybernetics, including the military. Some protest the use of such controversial tech, worried it may fall into the wrong hands. Naturally, it does.
While Activision did not provide specific details to what kind of villain players will be up against (more details are likely to emerge next month at E3), it appears to be a tech savvy genius who has no problem building advanced soldiers and robots armed to the teeth. That doesn't mean your main player isn't ready, though, as he or she will have plenty of technical tricks to fight back.
First, players will be able to choose the gender of the main character in the campaign, a first for the CoD series. While this won't make a tremendous difference with the story (both genders kick butt), it's a nice change of pace for players requesting a female lead. Taking the single player a step further, Black Ops 3 will also support four-player online co-op, allowing friends to help you complete objectives.
Players will also be able to utilize a DNI, a special device that can scan areas to identify enemy placements. In highly guarded areas, this can make a huge difference, since enemies will likely call for reinforcements if you run in guns blazing.
From there you'll be able to use a number of items (either in campaign, multiplayer or the returning Zombies mode), including the fireflies (or terror bees), a group of mini-drones that surround enemies and utilize other abilities when upgraded, including setting things on fire. This could be useful for distracting adversaries or thinning their numbers.
The cloaking ability from Advanced Warfare returns, letting you turn it on during battle instead of having to find a safe spot to activate it. This could be useful when it comes to recovering lost health, or if you want to sneak up on someone and conveniently stab him with a melee attack.
Advanced Warfare's double jump ability was replaced with the thrust jump, which allows players to reach higher ledges or increase their verticals to cross larger gaps or pounce on a group from above. A power slide can also be used, enabling players to slip along the ground and surprise a patrolling guard, or better yet, escape a quick firefight should things get too hot. Basic running was also tweaked, as you can perform a quick turn by jumping in mid-air, a good way to surprise someone.
There's also the wall run, which works in a similar fashion to last year's Titanfall. You'll be able to climb across walls and combine this technique with sliding and thrust jumping, providing better mobility. There's a meter that needs refills whenever you utilize these abilities, but from what we’ve seen, it refills quickly enough.
You can swim underwater and shoot enemies. While a swimming firefight sounds ridiculous, the trailer (included below) makes it look entertaining.
Details about the game's Multiplayer or Zombie modes are scarce, but Treyarch promised both will go through an overhaul to become more competitive. A new Gunsmith mode provides better weapon customization, and a Camo Designer as well as an XP progression system promises rewards at every turn. Zombies should work the same way, with new unlockable gear and more challenges, similar to what Advanced Warfare provided last year, but with an even more futuristic twist.
If the new Advanced Warfare trailer is any indication, multiplayer should also bring a number of new variants, as well as weapons that pack a punch.
Black Ops 3 should be one of Activision's bigger games at E3 next month, and set for release later this year. We'll offer full coverage, including multiplayer tips, Zombie tips and a more in-depth look on what to expect from Campaign and co-op.