‘Call of Duty’ series added to Xbox Games on Demand sale

The Call of Duty series has been added to the Xbox Live Games on Demand sale.For the next 24 hours, Call of Duty 2, 3, World at War, Black Ops, Black Ops 2 and the Modern Warfare trilogy can be picked up for a reduced price.

Black Ops 2 - Celerium campaign mission

Call of Duty 2, 3, World at War, Modern Warfare and Modern Warfare 3 are all available at 50% off, costing between £8.99 and £24.99 ($9.99 – $29.99).

The original Black Ops is available for £14.99 ($19.99), while last year’s sequel can be downloaded for £44.99 ($49.99), saving customers 17% on the normal asking price.

The biggest discount of the day sees Modern Warfare 2 reduced to £11.99 ($9.99), saving customers 67%.

Gallery – view Black Ops 2 images below:

Grid, for example, can be purchased for just £2.69, DiRT 2 for £4.49 and BioShock also for £4.49. More information can be found on Major Nelson’s blog.

Other games coming to the sale include Max Payne 3, Batman: Arkham City and Portal 2.

> Call of Duty 2 – £8.99 ($9.99)
> Call of Duty 3 – £8.99 ($9.99)
> World at War – £11.99 ($9.99)
> Black Ops – £14.99 ($19.99)
> Black Ops 2 – £44.99 ($49.99)
> Modern Warfare – £11.99 ($9.99)
> Modern Warfare 2 – £11.99 ($9.99)
> Modern Warfare 3 – £24.99 ($29.99)

Source Article from http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/gaming/news/a462681/call-of-duty-series-added-to-xbox-games-on-demand-sale.html

The evolution of Call of Duty Elite

In the time it’s taken me to write this sentence, more than 900 hours of Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 has been cumulatively played around the world by its millions of fans.

Last year, Call of Duty publisher Activision created a website to track that stat and other similar, almost alarming numbers live.

Scrolling down the lengthy page exposes tickers of numbers that move so fast it’s hard to keep up with the single digits. Instead, a curious reader has to rely on the hundreds, or the thousands, or the hundred thousands to settle on a single number long enough to think about what it might mean.

These live global stats are the heartbeat of one of the most played video games in the world.

They can be found on the official website for Call of Duty Elite, the series spanning service that tracks stats, improves gameplay and builds communities and competitions for the first-person shooter.

Launched in the fall of 2011, Elite was conceived by Activision as a service that would support fans of the Call of Duty franchise as they transition from one game to the next. Its initial goal, developers told me at the time, was to help Call of Duty become a sort of national pastime and extend the experience into a player’s daily life.

Now, 14 months since its launch, Elite’s goals seem unchanged, but the way it’s working to attain them has shifted dramatically.

Where once Elite was both a free and paid service, now it is free only. Elite TV, once aiming to become a sort of Call of Duty-themed mainstream television channel, has dropped its Hollywood aspirations to become something more akin to a Khan Academy for gamers. Where last year viewers found original video content created by Hollywood talent like Will Arnett, Jason Bateman and Tony and Ridley Scott, now Elite TV offers strategy videos, replay from matches and Call of Duty news.

 

Elite2

That shift was driven by a year of watching how Elite was being used. It became clear that there were three really big patterns, said Activision producer Jason Ades.

Stats, support of persistent teams, called clans, and competition.

Responding to gamers’ thirst for stats, Elite’s Beachhead Studio developers created a page dedicated to both global and personal stats, a place where a player could see what Ades refers to as “back of baseball card” information. It’s here where you can watch those global numbers whirl by or you can see how many times you’ve killed or been killed, how many shots you’ve fired and hours played. A player can also use more detailed statistics to analyze their play in hopes of upping their performance. That means tracking which weapons you’re best with, which areas in a map you die most often or take down most opponents.

“It’s what people do at the end of a long play session,” Ades said. “That was the number one thing, the stat service that we provide.”

Looking at the popularity of clans, the developers dropped their use of “groups” and pushed more clan support which fed into an increased interest in competition.

It’s that thirst for competition that will see the biggest effort this year.

League play allows gamers to drop into formal 30-day “seasons” designed to be played on a level playing field. Before playing your first league match, gamers have to compete in a number of placement matches. Elite then automatically determines which of the six divisions, and numerous subdivisions to place a player in. Each subdivision can host up to 200 players.

“It lets me tell the story about the game I just played. It lets me show off my custom class. It lets me go and converse with my friends in an interesting way.”

The idea is that a player will be more invested in a smaller competition when they know they have a better chance of doing well, rather than competing against the millions of Call of Duty players in the world for the same top spot.

“We’re really behind it,” Ades said. “It’s a key pillar of Elite and we’re going to support League as much as possible.”

Elite’s evolution is nudged along not just by what players are doing, but also by what the latest developer of a Call of Duty game is hoping to push in their title.

Black Ops 2 developer Treyarch, for instance, met regularly with Beachhead to discuss league play, they also pushed for livestreaming of video. And that conversation goes both ways.

The game’s popular Zombies mode was built on top of Call of Duty’s multiplayer mode this time, rather than its single player mode, specifically so Elite would be able to track stats and share them with players, said Jay Purear, director of brand development for Treyarch.

“Every single one of the Activision’s internal studios are always bringing their own sort of unique flavor to the Call of Duty franchise,” he said. “I think our role is to make sure that we keep some of our key Elite features, wherever possible, evolving and moving forward.”

While some of Elite’s strategy for building upon Call of Duty’s successes may have shifted, the core tenant for the service remains unchanged: the concept that Call of Duty isn’t just a video game, it’s a social experience.

“I absolutely believe at the center of Elite and the Call of Duty experience is that social aspect,” said Michael Gesner, executive producer at Beachhead Studios. “We tried to design a lot of our features around the idea that we’re facilitating the conversation around Call of Duty.”

While players may see the mobile app for Elite as a way to pull stats, Gesner and his team see it as a “conversation piece.”

“It lets me tell the story about the game I just played,” he said. “It lets me show off my custom class. It lets me go and converse with my friends in an interesting way.”

Good Game is an internationally syndicated weekly news and opinion column about the big stories of the week in the gaming industry and its bigger impact on things to come. Brian Crecente is a founding News Editor of Polygon.

Source Article from http://www.polygon.com/2013/1/21/3900050/the-evolution-of-call-of-duty-elite

Call of Duty games on sale for Steam’s Sale

mw3-content-collection-2-face-offSuch as every year Steam generously gives everything a sale that massively drops the prices of games. Steam has now announced that many of the the games will be included for the Holiday Sale.

The games are all 50% off from the original price.

Games on sale:

  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 – now $29.99
  • Modern Warfare 3′s DLC:
    • Content Collection 1 – now $7.49
    • Content Collection 2 – now $7.49
    • Content Collection 3 – now $7.49
    • Content Collection 4 – now $7.49
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 – now $9.99
  • Modern Warfare 2′s DLC:
    • Resurgence Pack – now $7.49
    • Stimulus Package – now $7.49
  • Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare – now just $9.99
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops – Mac Edition (now $24.99) and PC Edition (now $19.99)
  • Black Ops 1 DLC:
    • First Strike – now $7.49
    • Escalation – now $7.49
    • Annihilation – now $7.49
    • Rezurrection – now $7.49
  • Call of Duty 1 – now $9.99
  • Call of Duty 2 – now $9.99
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops II – now $49.99 – just 17% off.
  • Black Ops 2 Deluxe Edition – now $66.39 – just 17% off.

Will Black Ops II outsell Modern Warfare 3? Does it matter? – MCV

All the research suggests that Call of Duty has peaked.

Last year’s Modern Warfare 3 sold significantly fewer units in the UK than 2010’s Black Ops and 2009’s Modern Warfare 2.

Anecdotally, MCV has been told that online traffic and magazine sales for Call of Duty editorial and covers have dropped year-on-year.

Yet it’s wrong to suggest Call of Duty is in a death spiral. Modern Warfare 3 is the fifth best-selling game in UK?history, and is close to overtaking Modern Warfare 2 to become the second highest grossing UK game since records began.

Activision’s shareholders may disagree, but when a game is selling this much, does it matter if it’s peaked?

ANSWERING THE CALL

Yet as the movie makers behind Saw will attest, releasing a blockbuster every year can lead to diminishing returns as consumers get bored of the formulae.

And with a drop in sales for Modern Warfare 3, there’s more pressure on Activision to try something a little different with Black Ops II. Developer Treyarch has sought to ‘surprise’ fans this year, with a futuristic setting and a new-look multiplayer, both of which took centre-stage in the game’s high-profile live-action TV ad.

“‘Surprise’ is one of the many messages around Black Ops II,” Activision’s UK boss Peter Hepworth told MCV

“Black Ops II delivers innovation at every level, and for many this will drive a re-assessment of a franchise.

“With 40m players it’s important to deliver an experience which feels fresh every year, while retaining the features which our core fans know and love. With such a massive community you have to ensure there is something for everyone.”

Each year Activision has sought to raise the bar in terms of spectacle. The firm has recruited Hollywood talent – and not just for the game. Even the live-action TV ad was directed by Guy Ritchie and starred A-lister Robert Downey Jr.

“Every year Call of Duty pushes media boundaries to ensure we deliver a high impact campaign,” continued Hepworth.

“This year is no different with presence at key events such as the Champions League Final and The Dark Knight Rises. At launch the campaign will be unavoidable, encompassing TV, press, radio, outdoor and digital.

“Call of Duty is now blurring the lines of entertainment with many parallels with Hollywood and cinema being drawn. This link is apparent in the level of talent which Treyarch has been able to recruit to create the most ambitious Call of Duty yet, such as scriptwriter David S. Goyer [who co-wrote the Batman trilogy], musical talents such as Trent Reznor [who won an Oscar for The Social Network score] and Jack Wall, as well as A-list actors Sam Worthington and Michael Rooker. The TV ad is the embodiment of this.”

 

LONG-TERM SUCCESS?

 

In terms of revenue, Black Ops II will almost certainly be the biggest entertainment launch of the year. Activision’s marketing muscle, plus its A-list supporting cast will ensure that.

The game’s biggest rival is the new James Bond movie Skyfall, which made £37.2m in Box Office receipts in its first week in the UK. Compare that to last year’s Call of Duty, which generated over £90m in its first week, and Black Ops II would need to suffer a 60 per cent drop in sales year-on-year to tumble behind Skyfall (it’s important to note that cinema tickets are considerably cheaper than video games, so Skyfall has a larger audience).

But the real challenge for Activision and Call of Duty is how it is performing in three months’ time. Modern Warfare 3’s sales curve dropped off sharply after launch, far more severely than in previous years.

Can Black Ops II prove a longer-term success? It won’t be easy. Next year is a busy one for video games, with a congested Q1 release schedule, plus the highly anticipated arrival of Grand Theft Auto V in spring. It          will be interesting to see what Activision has          planned for Black Ops II in the New Year.

 

DOES IT MATTER?

Ultimately a bit of perspective is needed. Will Black Ops II beat Black Ops? Probably not.

We’re talking about a game that has sold almost 4m units in the UK, generating well over £150m. If next week’s shooter comes even close to that it will be deemed a triumph, particularly when you consider how the games retail market has struggled this year.

Next week UK stores are expecting to make around £80m in less than a week from one game alone. Even if it has peaked, even if it is in decline, Call of Duty is still the biggest entertainment launch of the year.

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Source Article from http://www.mcvuk.com/news/read/will-black-ops-ii-outsell-modern-warfare-3-does-it-matter/0106121

MW3 Elite Memberships Extended by Activision

We’ve just received an email from the teams at Activison and Beachhead Studio informing us that our Elite Premium membership for MW3 will be extended till March 1st, 2013.

We don’t know yet if this applies to everyone, or just people who bought it last year in the November/December timeframe. Activision did promise the founders one extra month, and now it appears they are giving 3 extra months of service.

In the email they noted that memberships will be extended “November 8th between 7am and 1am EST” and during that timeframe, we may have troubles access ELITE. Also important: your PSN/XBL service list will not reflect these changes, but the extension will occur.

Once March 1st comes around, your premium status in MW3 will end -meaning your score in MW3 Ops/Challenges will not count; you cannot watch MW3 ELITE TV content; your vault looses slots, etc.

ELITE is FREE for Black Ops 2, meaning this premium extension has nothing to do with Elite and Black Ops 2 integration.

 

Source Article from http://www.charlieintel.com/2012/11/08/activision-extends-current-mw3-elite-premium-memberships/

“Marine” Camo in MW3 finally unlocked

This camo was previously only available to Wii Players since launch, however now it’s finally available for Xbox, PS3, and PC.

SOURCE: MW3 via DW247

 

Source Article from http://www.charlieintel.com/2012/11/03/marine-camo-in-mw3-finally-unlocked-for-all/

Minecraft dethrones Call of Duty as Xbox Live king

Could there be a bigger sign of the changing times?

Call of Duty’s position at the top of Major Nelson’s weekly Xbox Live Top Ten is and has been a given for years. It measures the most popular games according to unique users logged into Xbox Live.

But this week’s listing delivered somewhat of a surprise – Call of Duty wasn’t top. Instead, Mojang’s once cult indie hit and worldwide sensation Minecraft was the king of Xbox Live.

It’s the first time Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 hasn’t been number once since its release in early November last year. At the time it dethroned its predecessor COD: Black Ops.

The news is somewhat symbolic at a time when the established gaming hierarchy is undergoing significant change.

For years the industry has been dominated by triple-A hits from colossal publishers. But the resurgence of the indie developer and the increased popularity of smaller, digital releases has been threatening to destabilise the establishment.

Source Article from http://www.mcvuk.com/news/read/minecraft-dethrones-call-of-duty-as-xbox-live-king/0105308

Call Of Duty Games: Worst To Best

Let us know your opinions, leave a comment at the bottom (you can log in with your twitter or facebook)

8. Call Of Duty 3

Call Of Duty 3 is the runt of the litter. After an immensely strong opening level, Treyarch’s game goes quickly to pot. Following a set of characters in a single location, repetition quickly creeps in as the brownish/green of wartime Europe becomes mired in a slew of bad game design and decidedly average gameplay.

Forcing in QTEs and taking players through some the series’ most by-the-numbers levels, Call Of Duty 3 is a rehash of the second game and nowhere near as good. Even the multiplayer fails to capture the same magic as the second game, though Treyarch does attempt to shake things up by including tanks and jeeps and bigger levels to use them on.

Ultimately, Call Of Duty 3 felt rushed in almost every regard and doesn’t have anywhere near the same highs as the series has gone onto hit.

7. Call Of Duty: World At War

The supposed prequel to Black Ops, the only real connecting thread you have between the two games are a handful of characters (or, Gary Oldman). World At War presented the darker side of WWII with the Pacific theatre of war coming into stark focus. World At War also focused on the Russia’s revenge on the Nazis in Berlin and though it has some of the series’ most violent gameplay, it feels shallow and, ironically, a bit childish.

Treyarch made some strong innovations, though, bringing in the new Zombies mode and a focus on vehicles in multiplayer to the forefront of design. World At War still lacks the focus and slick design the series has become known for and though it was the last COD to set itself in WWII, it felt like it wasted the opportunity to present a mature game set in the dark moments before the war’s end.

6. Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

Modern Warfare 3 had a troubled time in development and though it features towards the bottom half of this list, it can still be considered as one of COD’s better games. But it’s also the series’ most derivative entry. Much of Modern Warfare 3 has been seen before and though it does smooth over some rough edges in both single-player and multiplayer, it’s hard to get that excited about a game that’s repeating the beats of previous titles.

Modern Warfare 3 has a shocking controversial moment, high-speed set pieces and a nonsensical plot that further descends into farce the further in you get. Though it does draw to a conclusion the narrative arc that was started in Call Of Duty 4, it’s hard to understand or care when the game limps to its inevitable conclusion. Multiplayer fares better, but again suffers from the same issues, leaving Treyarch’s Black Ops to do much of the innovating and growing.

A good game, Modern Warfare 3 is just one you will have already played.

5. Call Of Duty

The original Call Of Duty arrived on PC to compete with Medal Of Honor and it went straight for the throat. Presenting a cinematic style that had yet to take-off, Call Of Duty’s WWII shooting felt like a breath of fresh air. Looking back at Infinity Ward’s original game, the framework for the modern COD is seemingly intact. The run-and-gun gameplay, improvised cover, those all important big moments; what Call Of Duty would become is right here in the original game’s code.

It hasn’t aged particularly well, though. As an XBLA game Call Of Duty is for nostalgic fans only, but it’s fascinating to see where the series has come from and why it’s grown into the super franchise we see before us today. Even its multiplayer shows signs of its addictive, slick and compelling gunplay.

On PC, Call Of Duty was a firm LAN party favourite with its WWII levels and weapons creating easy to understand gameplay, that in some ways, has dictated every game in the series since.

4. Call Of Duty: Black Ops

Call Of Duty: Black Ops was Treyarch’s chance to compete with Infinity Ward’s Modern Warfare series and it left nothing to chance. Black Ops’ story of Sixties’ spies, Vietnam, WWII mysteries and sleeper cells brought Call Of Duty into totally new territory. Not all of it worked, in fact a lot of it felt forced and a bit weird, but Black Ops had tons of style.

Treyarch’s game did suffer from a number of technical issues and it could be argued its ambitious nature crippled some of the gameplay, but much of that was forgotten when players jumped into the multiplayer. Black Ops multiplayer added tons of new innovations to Infinity Ward’s template and kept players engaged on a whole new level.

With new modes, customisation and a whole lot of content, Black Ops’ multiplayer is its best feature and something to look forward to in its sequel.

3. Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Modern Warfare 2 was the first Call Of Duty to pick up where the previous game’s narrative left off (we’re not counting Black Ops in this) and it evolved its predecessor’s story into a nightmare scenario – the invasion of the US. The USA is particularly proud of the fact that no foreign army has ever put boots on the ground in America and Modern Warfare played on this fear while presenting some the series’ most explosive and exciting set pieces; even if much of it felt like a Bond film pastiche. Though its story was eventually lost under a mire of military nonsense, the action came thick and fast.

Everything was bigger and better in Modern Warfare 2, but much of what Infinity Ward created was overshadowed by two prominent elements – multiplayer and ‘No Russian’. The controversial level pushed Call Of Duty’s storytelling credentials and the boundaries of morality in gaming, but even the shocking airport level paled in comparison to the incredible popularity of Modern Warfare 2’s multiplayer.

 2. Call Of Duty 2

One of the greatest WWII shooters ever produced, Call Of Duty 2 was the launch game for the Xbox 360. Taking players across the European and North African theatres of war and presenting some stunning battles, Call Of Duty 2 gave gamers the chance to experience WWII like never before.

With Infinity Ward’s highly cinematic style and sprawling, multi-tiered levels, the scope to Call Of Duty 2 was like nothing that came before. Recreating the US Pointe du Hoc battle, as soldiers climbed a sheer cliff face to attack the Nazis holding up in the bunkers above, it remains as a series high. Call Of Duty may have moved beyond WWII, but COD 2 will be remembered as the modern, definitive shooter of the genre.

And that’s before we consider the multiplayer. Though it got off to a shaky start, once it was patched it offered a glimpse into the future and the juggernaut it would become.

 1. Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

The original Modern Warfare presented a creative double-whammy when it was released in 2007. Not only did its campaign contain some of the most evocative and striking imagery for a videogame in a post-Iraq war world, but its gameplay and set pieces were remarkably original. It’s multiplayer also stands out as among the series’ best, establishing much of what we now consider staple mechanics of the genre.

With a storyline that managed to keep one foot firmly planted in believable territory (at least until the nuke went off), Modern Warfare’s set pieces kept players in the thick of the action. So much of Modern Warfare has been borrowed by other games it can feel like it’s one big cliché, but it was the first to cement the cinematic COD formula that has become the template for every game in the series since.

Agree with us? Let us know what you think below.

Source Article from http://www.nowgamer.com/news/1646213/call_of_duty_worst_to_best.html