Everyone is looking forward to tomorrow's big Call of Duty reveal. Many already believe the next Call of Duty game will be Black Ops 2, as several leaks, rumors, and accidental postings have pointed toward the game's existence. But while everyone has been excited to see a new Black Ops title come out of Treyarch, no one has stopped to think of what a new Black Ops title would actually be like. When you look back on the Call of Duty series and compare its history to the rumors that have been leaked, you can at the very least make a couple educated guesses.
First, you have to ask yourself is "how is Black Ops different from any other Call of Duty?" The first thing that comes to mind for most gamers is CoD points. This departure from the linear unlock system was generally received well by the Call of Duty fanbase. Since you could focus on the unlocks and attachments that fit your playstyle, it felt like you had more control over the progression of your character. There were a lot fewer "throwaway" unlocks. If you weren't interested in heavy machine guns but very interested in sniper rifles, you simply dumped all your CoD points into rifles and ignored heavy machine guns altogether.
As simple and enjoyable as this was, Infinity Ward decided to take CoD points out of Modern Warfare 3. So it's very likely that we will see them return in Black Ops 2. With the return of CoD points comes the return of alternative ways to earn them. Wager matches will most likely return, giving you interesting new types of non-standard gameplay that you can risk your CoD points on. Contracts will also probably return, allowing you to take on side quest-like objectives to earn yet more CoD points.
Of course, we will probably see new perks and killstreaks, and luckily there have been some pretty elaborate rumors about that. Fan site CharlieIntel supposedly received a list of multiplayer details for Call of Duty Black Ops 2 from the same source that leaked the original "return for debriefing" poster that teased a CoD reveal in the first place.
This info listed twelve completely new perks, some of which are pretty far out there. For example, Pilot allows your flying killstreaks to count toward your next killstreak. When leveled to Pro, it allows your flying killstreaks to last until you are killed or they are shot down. Other crazy perks include Juggernaut, which restores helath while running; Bladesman, which allows you to carry two knives at once; Escape Artist, which lets you feign death; and Diver, which lets you dive into cover.
The supposed leak also revealed that each perk will have an "Elite" level after its Pro level. These Elite functions only activate if you unlock them and use them alongside another perk. For example, Pilot Elite allows your uncontrollable flying killstreaks to remain hidden on the map if you also have Blind Eye active.
How likely is it that these perks will be in the final game? Not very. Many of the perks are absurdly overpowered and the list includes some spelling and grammar errors. However, it's possible that Treyarch is actually considering adding direct perk synergy to the system. Having perks do different things depending on what other perks they're paired with could open up a variety of new loadouts to try. Players have been asking for upgraded perk functionality for a while, so it's not too far out there to suggest that some sort of "elite" level may be added on to each perk.
The supposed info leak contained information on rumored game types as well. Escort was a new mode where you have to escort an important player to three important flags in order to attain victory. Split Spawn allows you to spawn from a helicopter that one of your teammates controls. If the helicopter is shot down, your team can no longer respawn. Either capturing a central flag or killing all of your opponents nets you a win. Equalizer is the most interesting mode, and conversely the mode that makes me think this info is a sham. It's described as such:
A game mode in which players are switched to the enemy team upon death. Players will compete for a flag, which when owned, open up a power plant to allow the player to customize their class in game, get new weapons, and put on a juggernaut suit for their team only. When there are 2 players left on a team, they are granted with the power plant automatically, and pointstreaks up to a 5 point requirement can also be obtained. If either of the two players die, they will remain on their own team. The team with the most converts (kills) at the end will win. If tied, whoever is currently owning the power plant will win.
Call me crazy, but that just seems too "Team Fortress" for Call of Duty. That being said, you will most likely see new modes of some kind. Call of Duty development teams have been adding brand new modes to every Call of Duty since Call of Duty 2, and it's unlikely that that tradition will stop here.
As time goes on, more and more RPG elements are added to the Call of Duty formula. If development continues as it has in the past, we will get even more options in Black Ops 2. This means more attachments, more guns, more killstreaks, and so on.
Still, Modern Warfare 3 didn't sell as well as Activision thought it would, so Treyarch will have to do their best to give Black Ops 2 its own personality. This means slower gameplay, more wide open maps, less overpowered killstreaks, and lots of the other things that people loved about the original Black Ops.
We only have to wait until tomorrow for Activision's big Call of Duty reveal. Will any of this "leaked info" be right, or will they surprise us with something totally different? May 1st will reveal everything—well, at least it will reveal the title of the game.
Angelo M. D'Argenio
Date: April 30, 2012
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*