Video Games

Theories about “Black Smith”

A source that won’t be named by many publications, leaked that the name of the next Call of Duty title would be Call of Duty: Patriots, and not Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 4 as initially thought. We do know that Call of Duty 2014 is being developed by Sledgehammer Games. We also know that the code-name of COD 2014 is “Black Smith.” We also know it will hit retailers before the holiday season starts.

So, what’s the problem? Well, we’re still one month away from the reveal of Black Smith, and people are talking about COD 2014 before it’s even teased, confirmed, or revealed. Call of Duty: Patriots is being called “fake” or even “false.” Let’s get to speculating, and debunk this to shreds!

Call of Duty: Patriots is a new sub-series.
After Call of Duty: Ghosts came out, it was met with mixed reactions both from critics, and fans alike. Some like it, and some don’t like it. However, the latter part is that people hate CODGhosts so much that they either won’t buy any Call of Duty title again until Activision gets it’s act together, or won’t buy Sledgehammer Games’ title because of [how they handled] Modern Warfare 3. Whatever their notion is; they won’t buy a new sub-series.

From a marketing stand-point, it’s a bad idea to create a new sub-series in both cases; Creating a new sub-series in the middle of a console transition was an ill-fated move. And “trying again” would be another bad, ill-fated move. Mostly because you have to start all over again as the marketer of that iteration. You have no fanbase to stand on top of. You have no “holy shit it’s back!” reaction.

Call of Duty: Patriots is going back to the World War 1 theme.
While some people are looking forward to a new depiction of World War 1 or 2 or even 3 which MW3 experimented with. The majority of the Call of Duty franchise is made up of this “Modern Warfare” theme. Treyarch experimented with World War themes two times after COD4: Modern Warfare, and they both ‘bombed’ when you talk about trying to expand the Call of Duty demographic. Granted, there are some people who liked World at War, and Black Ops, but they didn’t break records like Activision intended. Black Ops 2 was Treyarch’s biggest game yet.

A lot of people are saying they won’t buy the new game – if this is true. To some people; going back to World War 1 means Trench Warfare, which is what made World War 1 so famous. Going back to World War 1 means weapons will be “limited” and hell, some are saying it’d be boring.

Also, the image leaked to IGN, was flashed during Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2014 in March. It shows a soldier with a modern helmet. Even if Patriots is said to have fantasy elements, this is a perfect point. The fact that the character looks like Sergeant Foley from Modern Warfare 2 also refutes these claims.

Call of Duty: Patriots is Next Gen-Only.
Many people are discounting Patriots, calling it false, fake, and a dumb notion. Mostly because Activision is a multiplatform publisher, meaning they want their games on many game consoles as humanly possible to gain the highest grossing numbers for a particular game. Call of Duty is notoriously known for this.

However, this is actually one of the most credible information given by the source. Eric Hirshberg said earlier this year: “[Call of Duty 2014] will be a next-gen-first production and the current-gen game will be a version of that.” Activision has done this many times before, actually. For example, Wii’s Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Reflex was a version of the original COD4. There was also a Nintendo DS version of COD4. So, theoretically; Call of Duty: Patriots might have two separate versions – the Sledgehammer Games/Next Gen version, and the Current Gen version.

Call of Duty: Patriots will NOT have split-screen.
Most Call of Duty titles has been split-screen since inception. This is one part I do not believe. As a matter of fact; developers has implemented better Split Screen support since MW3. Since then, it has been expanded to support multiplayer and split-screen all at the same time. No reason to remove it now.

The source article in question was from a community-driven website.
Kotaku debunked the article and bring attention to BubbleWS’s previous track record on “leaked” articles. And I quote:

Last year, a Bubblews poster claimed that Bethesda secretly showed Fallout 4 to journalists at E3. Though this was not true, major websites including VG247 picked up on the rumor, citing Bubblews as their source.

BubbleWS pays it’s users for how popular their article gets, the more viral it is, the more funds you get. That’s bylined in their About page. Furthermore, Kotaku notes:

For this Call of Duty rumor, simply clicking on the author’s byline reveals that he or she has no other posts on the site—there is no track record here, or reason to believe that any of this is correct. Anyone could have created this account and written this thing.

And, there you have it…

Conclusion: I still stick to my original sentiments: I strongly believe that Sledgehammer Games’ Call of Duty title is indeed Modern Warfare 4. The developers at Sledgehammer Games has been teasing their Call of Duty title to be a Modern Warfare title for years now. Why waste all that effort only to change the name? Why does Activision or Sledgehammer Games want to start all over again with a new sub-series? I see no reason for them to do so.