Special: The multiplayer and Blackout mode of Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII – Last week Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII was officially unveiled by Treyarch and Activision. After this unveiling, the media got the chance to play the game and in our hands-on preview you can read all about the new shooter. We also had the opportunity to speak with Matt Scronce and Yale Miller from Treyarch, who could give us some more details about the multiplayer and Blackout mode. The latter is of course the showpiece of Black Ops IIII, since that has to set a new standard in the Battle Royale genre and that in the Call of Duty way.
Multiplayer and Blackout mode- Moving away wallruns and thrust jumping
Treyarch throws it with Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII somewhat different and if you put this game in perspective with Call of Duty: WWII, then it is completely different. The franchise switches this way between all sorts of time periods, but that does not really matter to Treyach. They have a certain vision and they will follow it, regardless of what others do in the franchise. Because the Black Ops sub-franchise has always been very popular, it is logical that this continues and this time the focus is really on putting together a team and gameplay that is most useful if you actually like A team plays.
Treyarch sees Black Ops IIII also as a kind of baby that originated from Black Ops II and III, as it takes a step back from the third part, but at the same time is a step ahead of the second part. . In this, the developer has to find a good balance to keep it logical in terms of gameplay. Wallrunnen and thrust jumping worked very well in Black Ops III, but with this game they go back to the ground. The studio describes it as a modern experience and in the gameplay this is the best bet for the new part. It is undisputed that it is modern, but the high pace of Black Ops III has been slightly reduced.
That has to do with the team focus and the specialists. Because it is now more team-oriented, you will also have to operate more as a team instead of running in a random direction. If you can then wallrun and thrust-jump, then quickly creates the situation that everyone flies in all directions. Even with the new specialists, this way of playing would not be logical, since certain specific possibilities of specialists would then become superfluous. In the trailer, for example, a Specialist could be seen who could raise a barricade. If you could jump over it, then that whole barricade is an unnecessary addition. Precisely because of this reason it is now based on the now classic ‘boots on the ground’ approach.
Incidentally, that was not just realized, so the gentlemen knew to tell. They have watched the different movesets for a very long time and the development of the current model has gradually evolved. During the development they tried a lot of things to see how it would turn out in the game, resulting in a somewhat slower game that feels very fast and especially plays very smoothly. The tactical underlay that comes with the team focus is an extra element why they chose to leave the move set from Black Ops III.
Multiplayer and Blackout mode – Focus on specialists
The specialists that were introduced in Call of Duty: Black Ops III that have been preserved and even expanded. How many specialists will know the final game is not yet known, but there are at least 10. These specialists form the core of the gameplay, since each Specialist has its own unique possibilities and it is prior to a match which Specialist you prefer . Once a Specialist has been chosen, it is not possible for other players to choose this, the same for the other team. The reason for this lies in the fact that every Specialist has something that works as a benefit and disadvantage to the other specialists and that must of course be balanced. By the way, it is not yet ruled out that the choice in specialists in the final game is a bit smoother, although Treyarch gave the impression that it had been reasonably fixed.
The specialists have to be balanced and that is perhaps the most complicated task for Treyarch. Especially because every selection of teams must be equivalent in fighting. On the basis of one hour of playing that is still difficult to judge, but the impression we have received is that it seems to work well together. Putting together a team, regardless of which specialists are chosen, is all based on teamwork and especially if you play with a fixed group of players, you can let go of a tactical philosophy. After all, people become experienced with a certain Specialist, develop it and that in turn leads to a development of the team, which ultimately should lead to ultimate results.
Anyone familiar with the specialists knows what can be expected of them. Still, it is best that the new specialists feel uncomfortable and that is a solution. As already indicated in the preview, each Specialist will have an individual mission that introduces you to the character. You get more of the story, but you also have to deal with all individual possibilities and that goes beyond being a simple tutorial. These separate missions also serve as a means to draw players into the multiplayer, because this allows you to gain experience in a fine and good way, says Treyarch. You learn more about the specialists, their resources and how their mechanics work, so that you can apply them in the best way in the actual fights.
Multiplayer and Blackout mode – You get the freedom
Treyarch emphasized in the conversation However, the focus is on playing in a team, but the player still gets all the freedom. If you are a ‘lone soldier’ who does not have anything from a team or, for example, plays free-for-all (not confirmed for the game), you get the freedom to do so. You can completely go your own way in the multiplayer, but it is arranged so that if you play together, you will be more successful. It is just what you think is most pleasant, but the freedom is always maintained and that also applies to the composition of your loadout per Specialist.
Every Specialist has his own equipment and weapons and you are completely free in how you put that together. If you want to play in a very team-oriented way, then there is the possibility to have everyone adjust everything so that it benefits the team. You play alone and you do not want to be limited in this, you live with composing your loadout before you get started. According to Treyarch you can play the game the way you want and as an example they gave the Specialist Sarif. It has the option of taking a ‘Spawn Deploy’, but of course it is useless if you want to play alone. Instead, you can also simply choose to bring a grenade. The Pick 10 system lets you choose freely from all items that are available for the relevant Specialist. How you organize the loadout is entirely up to you and that flexibility was something that Treyarch found very important to take with you in the game.
Massive war in Blackout
Completely new for the Call of Duty franchise is the Battle Royale mode Blackout. This mode is of course the result of the enormous popularity of Fortnite and PlayerUnknown’s Battleground. The idea for Blackout arose at the end of last year and it was not until the beginning of this year that Treyarch got a clear idea of exactly how they wanted to fill this out. The starting point for the studio was mainly that if they would do something like that, it would have to be done in a good Black Ops way. They have found that way and that is based on the philosophy of what players expect, how they can best shape it and how they can retain their own identity.
A lot of Scronce and Miller could still be here did not lose, because the focus during the unveiling was mainly on the multiplayer. Yet they wanted to tell us something and that is that we can expect good combat from Blackout with a lot of possibilities. That comes from a huge library of content. Think of content like specialists, characters from Zombies mode, various maps and much more. All of this is used on a large map consisting of a mix of content from Black Ops, Black Ops II and Black Ops III. That makes it somewhat unique, because you potentially get the best out of the franchise in one hope.
For now, however, we must rely on the words of the two gentlemen who are not in detail wanted to go into the conversation. Luckily they wanted to tell us something about the play tests that they had and that would have shown that it is incredibly fun. It still knows that nice gunplay, it is true to what you know and that with vehicles. What we can expect from the freedom of the vehicles is still unclear, although Miller said that it will be in the ‘Call of Duty Way’. Explosive. The map is also gigantic, because it is about 1500 times larger than Nuketown and that automatically makes it the largest folder they have ever made. This map logically also allows more players than before, but they still have to find the right balance.
So Treyarch did not want to be concrete about the number of players on the map, the expected and more, since that literally at this moment all is being tested. According to the developer, it is always on the look-out, breaking down, adjusting, optimizing and more. Try, try and try again, that’s what it’s all about and in the near future we’ll hear more. If you ask us for an expectation, assume more information during the gamescom. Presumably, Treyarch focuses this E3 on the Zombies mode for the game – in addition to the multiplayer, since it will be discussed extensively during E3 Coliseum.
Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII appears on October 12, but before the release another beta will take place. We can expect three Zombies maps, the well-known multiplayer and the new Blackout mode, which is Treyarch’s answer to Battle Royale. The developer closed the conversation by saying that this game is a love letter to all fans of the (sub-) franchise.