Train2Game News

It’s time to soldier up because Black Ops is back!

The series which has become the most played in Call of Duty® history as well as a cultural phenomenon around the globe returns October 12th with the release of Call of Duty®: Black Ops 4, a gritty, grounded, all-out combat experience.

Black Ops 4 raises the bar for Multiplayer mode that increases tactical gameplay and player choice, along with the biggest Zombies offering ever with three full experiences at launch, and Blackout, where the Black Ops universe comes to life in a massive battle royale experience featuring iconic characters and locations from all four Black Ops games in a one-of-a-kind offering that is uniquely Black Ops. Published by Activision and developed by award-winning studio Treyarch, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4transforms the established universe played by hundreds of millions of fans with the largest gameplay experience ever created in the series.

“Black Ops 4 gives our community more ways to have fun with their friends than anything Treyarch has ever created and introduces meaningful innovations to every element of the game, including next level tactical team-based multiplayer, the biggest zombies offering yet and Blackout, where the largest map in Call of Duty history brings together the rich universe of Black Ops,” said Rob Kostich, EVP and GM, Call of Duty. “More than 200 million players have called Black Ops home, and they’ve played for more than 15 billion hours. This is an incredible community that has inspired the development team to take their innovative gameplay design to new heights.”

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is scheduled for release on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on October 12th. Fans can pre-order now and get access to the Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Private Beta*. Black Ops 4 for thePC delivers a fully-optimized experience, which for the first time in Call of Duty’s history will be available exclusively on, Blizzard Entertainment’s online gaming service.

The game was revealed earlier today in a livestreamed community event broadcast worldwide across 10 languages, as Activision and Treyarch unveiled an unprecedented first look along with a trove of detailed game information.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 features gritty, grounded combat, along with new levels of customization and tactical gameplay, and a variety of new weaponry, maps and modes for the ultimate Black Ops multiplayer experience. The game features the return of the iconic Pick 10 system, along with a series of innovations in weapon controls, combat flow, health regeneration, and player movement. Black Ops 4 goes deeper than ever before into the fiction of multiplayer, where players will explore the world of Specialists – who they are, why they exist, and what battles they fight together – while mastering their gameplay through solo and multiplayer combat experiences. Black Ops 4 features a combination of new and returning Specialists, each with their own unique weapons, equipment and playstyles. Players will be powerful alone, but devastating as a team working together.

“Black Ops 4 is by far the most ambitious title our team has ever created,” said Dan Bunting, Co-Studio Head, Treyarch. “At its core Black Opshas always been about challenging convention and boldly taking our gameplay in new directions. With Black Ops 4, we’ve designed an experience for all play styles and skill levels from casual to competitive. It brings a layer of tactical depth that rewards players for mastery, and just feels so good to play.”

Celebrating the 10-year anniversary of the original Call of Duty Zombies, Black Ops 4 also debuts an entirely new and unprecedented Zombies experience that’s the biggest Day One offering in franchise history – with three fully-featured Zombies experiences at launch – IX, Voyage of Despair and Blood of the Dead. With immersive new adventures, a brand new cast of characters and a nefarious new enemy, Black Ops 4 Zombies will feature the deep gameplay and easter eggs that the rabid community of fans devours.

It also includes the most customizable action to date, new systems for creating and completing community challenges, and social systems designed to connect players. Black Ops 4also reintroduces difficulty levels and an in-game tutorial to onboard new players to the Zombies universe, while giving hardcore players the option of ratcheting up the challenge. Additionally, Zombie Rush is a brand new mode that streamlines the gameplay experience, introducing enticing new challenges to grizzled veterans, while creating a whole new tempo of gameplay for newcomers.

In addition to unveiling Multiplayer and Zombies in today’s world premiere, the team also introduced Blackout – the new battle royale-style experience that combines Black Ops’ signature fast, fluid, guns-up combat, with fierce new levels of survival competition across iconic Black Ops settings re-imagined at a colossal scale. Blackout is an experience unlike any other game or mode in Call of Duty history, where players will have to scavenge, strategize, compete and survive to win.

Featuring the largest map ever built in Call of Duty – 1,500 times bigger than Nuketown – Blackout thrusts players into a collision course as they play as classic characters spanning the history of the Black Ops series including the original Call of Duty Zombies Origins cast. Battling solo or in teams, players will engage in diverse combat complete with ground, air and sea vehicles across a gamespace unlike anything ever in Call of Duty. Players will encounter fan-favorite Black Ops map locations and call upon a massive arsenal of Black Ops weaponry and equipment as the winner-takes-all action creates a new way to play Call of Duty.

“The Black Ops community means everything to us, so we knew in order to deliver something really special for our fans like Blackout, with the biggest map we’ve ever created in Call of Duty, we had to push ourselves and our tech to the absolute limits,” said Mark Gordon, Co-Studio Head, Treyarch. “The same goes for our PC community. They have inspired and fueled us to set a new standard on PC across every aspect from dedicated servers and security to full optimization and polish that’s worthy of both Black Ops and”

For the PC, Treyarch is co-developing with Beenox, who together are working closely with Blizzard to optimize Black Ops 4 for Black Ops 4 represents the largest development team assembled for a PC title in the series. Black Ops 4 on PC will have uncapped framerate, 4K resolution and HDR, support for ultra-wide monitors and the ability for players to extensively customize the performance and visual quality for their specific hardware. In addition, players will be able to select from pre-set control options, including options for left-handed players, or fully customize the keyboard and mouse controls to their preference. In addition, Treyarch and Beenox worked closely with the team at Blizzard to incorporate’s social systems, security, and server stability into Black Ops 4 to prepare for the release on on October 12th.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is published by Activision, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), and developed by Treyarch with additional development support from Raven Software and PC development with Beenox. For more information and the latest intel check out: , and follow @Treyarch and @CallofDuty on Twitter and Instagram and Facebook.

Train2Game News: Games Industry News – 09.08.13

Call of Duty Black Ops IIIt’s the end of the week and time for the industry news round up!

The epic climax of Activision and Treyarch’s Call of Duty: Black Ops II Downloadable Content (DLC) Season Pass culminates with Apocalypse. Available first on the Xbox Live online entertainment network from Microsoft on August 27, the game’s fourth and final DLC Pack delivers four thrilling, diverse multiplayer maps and the all-new wildly creative Zombies experience – “Origins”. In addition one of my favourite bands, Avenged Sevenfold, will be again lending their musical talent to the game with their song, Shepherd of Fire, from their upcoming album Hail to the King, featuring in the opening cinematic.

Marvelous Games, the European division of the Harvest Moon publisher MarvelousAQL, has today unveiled more details on RunBot – the first title to emerge from the recently announced five-game publishing agreement with Touch Racing Nitro developer Bravo Game Studios. Due for release worldwide on iOS on August 22nd, RunBot is a brilliant Parkour/freerunning twist on the endless runner genre, offering phenomenal 3D visuals across a constantly evolving course.

Sources say that Amazon is working on producing its own android based games console, for release later this year possibly around the US thanksgiving season. There’s no real news about what the console will consist of, other than ‘it’s coming’, but given that Amazon has a pretty healthy stock of games and a download service already in place, it could already be one up on the Ouya, whose exclusive developers have been struggling to turn a profit on the system.

The Suikoden Revival Movement has launched the next phase of its campaign entitled ‘Operation Blinking Mirror.’ Between December 10 and December 12, 2013, the Suikoden Revival Movement will be inundating Konami Japan with Suikoden-related paraphernalia such as letters, artwork, cosplay photographs and sculptures. Operation Blinking Mirror – an ode to a teleportation device found throughout the series – has launched its own Facebook page where fans can find out more.

Finally videos have surfaced from Microsoft and Sony unboxing the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. You can view the Xbox One – here and the PlayStation 4 – here.

Train2Game News: Games Industry News – 05.04.13

lucasartsIt is Friday so it is time for another Train2Game game industry news round up.

The saddest bit of news this week was that the new owners of LucasArts, Disney, has shut down the company. LucasArts were responsible for making many of the Star Wars licensed games as well as other games such as Monkey Island. A LucasFilm representative suggested that properties such as 1313 and Star Wars: First Assault could still find a home via a third party.

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and DC Entertainment announced that the Injustice: Gods Among Us game is now available on the App Store. Developed from the ground up by award-winning NetherRealm Studios, this free-to-play mobile game delivers stunning graphics and a completely unique fighting gameplay experience. The mobile game features a collectible card mechanic and engages players in 3-on-3 tag team combat that pits many of DC Comics most popular icons such as Batman, Superman, The Flash, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, Aquaman and more against one another. Fans who also own the forthcoming Xbox 360 and PlayStation3 versions will be able to unlock content in the console versions that will be available in the mobile game, and vice versa, by registering for a Warner Bros. ID (WBID) account and playing the game.

Perfect World Entertainment Inc. and Cryptic Studios are pleased to announce that on April 30, 2013, the free-to-play action MMORPG Dungeons & Dragons Neverwinter is heading into Open Beta, allowing millions of players unrestricted access to the game world. Neverwinter is Cryptic and Perfect World’s proof that Western free-to-play games, when built from the ground up, can compete with even the biggest boxed subscription titles. On April 30, the companies invite all gamers to put that claim to the test. There will be no character wipes or restricted access after the start of Open Beta. Players can still become Founders through Neverwinter’s Founder’s Pack Program. Benefits include exclusive access to Beta Weekend 4, permanent in-game items that are unique to Founders, early access to Open Beta, and VIP perks. To take advantage of these benefits and to gain exclusive access to Neverwinter’s Beta Weekend 4, players may visit:

The latest set of downloadable content for Treyarch’s Call of Duty: Black Ops II has been confirmed for an April 16th launch on Xbox Live. The pack will include four new maps as well as a new zombie mode, available for 1200 Microsoft points or free to existing season pass holders. The four new maps are: Magma, a modern Japanese village featuring volcanic eruptions; Encore, taking place in the aftermath of a London music festival; Vertigo, a futuristic high rise building in India and Studio, a Hollywood movie back lot which describes itself as a “contemporary remake of Firing Range” which was found in the original Black Ops. By far the most intriguing addition to the newest DLC is the new Mob of the Dead mode, which sounds interesting enough to breathe life into the unspectacular collection of zombie content available currently. In it you play as a prohibition-era mobster locked up in Alcatraz whose attempts to escape are “foiled by the rise of the undead.”

Finally, creators of the hit game Castle Crashers, have released a new game. Blocks, Cats, Hats, Betrayal! This is how The Behemoth have described their new game, Battleblock Theatre. This newly released game, that is currently only for XBLA, is all about platforming, a “story of geometric proportions”, several modes of online gameplay and a massive amount of replayability. It has over 450 levels, hundreds of unlockables to find, over 300 prisoners to free and The Behemoth is calling it their largest game to date. The Behemoth said they are considering future ports, just like they did with Castle Crashers, but since they are a small studio it would take them quite some time to port if they do decide to bring the game to PC or PS3.

Train2Game News: Black Ops II’s story “is better than most movies” says writer David S. Goyer

Call of Duty: Black Ops II’s story is better than that of many films. That’s according to game writer David S. Goyer – co-author of The Dark Knight Rises – speaking in a brand new behind the scenes video from Treyarch and Activision.

“Even though it’s a first person shooter, it’s got to be sophisticated, it’s got to be funny, it’s got to be challenging and it’s got to have twists and turns. In the case of Black Ops, I would argue the story is better than most movies that are being made” said Goyer.

The video also features Award-winning composer of The Social Network Trent Reznor discussing providing the score for Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, while Studio Head Mark Lamia and game director Mark Anthony discuss the relationship between movies, music and games.

Watch Behind the Scenes with Trent Reznor & David S. Goyer – Official Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 Video below, right here on The Train2Game Blog.

There’s more Call of Duty: Black Ops II news here on The Train2Game Blog, including a previous behind the scenes video preview.  Be sure to keep reading for more insights from developer diaries.

What are your thoughts on the high-profile team working on Black Ops II? Could it really have a story that’s better than films?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game News: Call of Duty: Black Ops II developer diary takes you behind the scenes

Get a glimpse at development of Call of Duty: Black Ops II in a behind the scenes preview from Treyarch.

The video sees studio head Mark Lamia discuss how Black Ops II is “pushing the boundaries of Call of Duty on every front,” while the team also discuss game design, technology, overhauling the lighting, the zombie mode and more.

The Call of Duty: Black Ops II behind the scenes video features Treyarch developers including director Dave Anthony, game design director David Vonderhaar, and lead animator Adam Rosas, and you can watch it below, right here on The Train2Game Blog.

Keep reading for the latest Call of Duty: Black Ops II news, while you can see developer diaries for a variety of games here on The Train2Game Blog.

What are your thoughts on the Call of Duty: Black Ops II behind the scenes video?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game News: Call of Duty: Black Ops II will ‘rewrite the rulebook’ say Treyarch

Train2Game students who play Call of Duty: Black Ops II when it’s released later this year will be playing a game that’s rewritten the rulebook for the popular shooter series.

That’s according to game director David Antony while discussing Call of Duty: Black Ops II and its game design with CVG.

“One of the ways we have been most ambitious is in terms of story. I worked with Hollywood screenwriter David Goyer for about the last three months editing the story on the first Black Ops, and we had a really great time. He genuinely enjoyed it, describing the experience as the most fun he’d had since film school 20 years ago.” he said.

“So we got to the end of the first Black Ops and he’s like ‘Dave, I want to work on the next one from the start. We’ve taken some risks on the first Black Ops; now let’s rewrite the rules about storytelling in games.’ So right from the start it wasn’t a case of thinking how far do we needed to go to satisfy peoples’ expectations… we’re not even thinking about that. We just want to rewrite the rulebook.”

Antony explained how Call of Duty: Black Ops 2’s branching story will work, revealing that there are different outcomes depending on your decisions.”

“So the sandbox levels, these are called Strike Force. Let me explain the overall branching story; you have characters – main characters – in the story who will live or die depending on what you do, and it’s not just what you do – it’s the choices you make and your skill in Strike Force. So depending on how skilful you are on those levels, it’ll actually have an influence on the overall Cold War that’s going on. So that’s one example.” he said.

“You play the game when it comes out in November, and you’re all likely to get different outcomes. So when you get to the end of the game we’re going to make it very clear to you the different things that could have happened.” he added.

Something that Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 won’t be getting, as previously reported by The Train2Game Blog, is a new engine. A team of 300 people are working on the game.

Keep reading The Train2Game Blog for all the latest news on Call of Duty: Black Ops II?

What are your thoughts on what Antony says about Call of Duty: Black Ops II?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game news: Call of Duty: Black Ops II doesn’t need a new engine say Treyarch

Train2Game students are very likely to have seen the official Call of Duty: Black Ops II announcement earlier this month, along with the accompanying trailer.

Eagle eyed viewers will have noticed the in-game engine looks similar to that of previous games, but Treyarch’s Mark Lamia has dismissed the need for a new one in order to improve visuals for Black Ops II.

“People always ask me, “Is this a new engine?” I liken it to people who live in an older house that has been remodelled.” he told One of Swords.

“Just because you’re remodelling the house and it will look new or it will have a new kitchen, you don’t tear out the foundation, or break out some of the framing. You might even go as hardcore as replacing the plumbing, and we will do that sort of thing, as an analogy.”

“It’s a gross simplification, but it’s one way to say that. There’s a lot of good still in that foundation that you wouldn’t get rid of and we don’t. We look to advance in the areas that support our game design.” he said.

Lamia continued to say that the engine doesn’t need to be altered if there aren’t any changes that need to me made.

“Engines, each time they get touched, they change. The creators alter them; they don’t modify what they don’t need to, and then they alter what they need to. You can’t make a competitive product if you’re not upgrading that engine along the way.”

“I think the whole thing about a new engine…sometimes that’s a great buzzword. Well, I have a new graphics engine — is that a new engine? Where does it start and stop? Elements of the code, you can trace back for a very very long time…but whole parts of the code are entirely new. Two areas we did focus on for this game were the graphics and the lighting — a pretty significant amount of work is going into that.” he added.

You can listen to the full 40 minute One of Swords interview with Treyarch’s Mark Lamia here.

Keep reading The Train2Game Blog for the latest Call of Duty: Black Ops II news.

What are your thoughts on the Call of Duty: Black Ops II engine? Do you think it could do with an upgrade?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game News: Call of Duty: Black Ops II officially revealed, 300 staff working on it

Train2Game students will have noticed that Call of Duty: Black Ops II has been officially been revealed. The latest title in Activision’s highly successful series is being developed by Treyarch, with the story set in 2025 and a branching story.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II is scheduled for release on Tuesday 13th November 2012 with over 300 staff working on it.

“There’s over 250 people at Treyarch, but there’s over 300 people working on the project,” Treyarch studio head Mark Lamia told VentureBeat.

“We do have contractors and test teams that aren’t part of the company. Those others aren’t actually employees of Treyarch. But there’s over 300 people working on the game right now.”

He added that due to the size of the project, Treyarch are happy to share resources with other Activision studios.

“We actually do open up anything from our side that they can have access to, but they have their own team with their own creative work,” said Lamia.

“Whether it’s inside of the Call of Duty franchise or, frankly, some other area of essential technology or whatever other area – if there are things that teams can access or leverage, then they do.

“For example, the facial rig and the performance capture was something that we worked with Activision’s central technology team on quite a bit. There are a lot of learnings there that can be applied to other teams.” he added.

The full Call of Duty: Black Ops II interview with Treyarch’s Mark Lamia is over on Venturebeat, while you can watch the Black Ops II reveal trailer below, right here on The Train2Game Blog.

What are your initial thoughts on Call of Duty: Black Ops II and the size of the team behind it?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Call of Duty: Black Ops – The biggest entertainment launch ever

Its official, Call of Duty: Black Ops holds the title of the biggest entertainment launch ever.  As MCV notes, Call of Duty: Black Ops was launched in the same week as popular beat combo Take That reformed and launched a new album. Even a new Harry Potter film was premiered, but it was the video game that came out on top.

Here in the UK, Call of Duty: Black Ops broke all previous day one records for a video game, shifting 1.4 million copies and making £58 million in revenue. Call of Duty: Black Ops went on to sell over two million copies in its first week on the shelves, generating over £80 million in revenue.

These figures easily beat every other entertainment product around at the moment, and MCV point out “Even the ‘fastest selling album of the decade’, Take That’s Progress, only managed 235,000 units in its first day on Monday this week, around 2m in revenue.”

The success of Call of Duty: Black Ops, combined with the launch of Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Kinect motion controller, means that the UK has had its biggest week ever when it comes to game sales. An estimated £114 million was made last week, beating the previous record of £107.6 million set in the final week of 2008.

Sales were possibly also improved by the various deals retailers provided in attempts to encourage consumers to buy Call of Duty: Black Ops from them.

Naturally, the massive sales of Call of Duty: Black Ops mean that it easily took the top spot in the UK video game charts. All of the games success has come on good, if not outstanding reviews, but its unlikely Activision and Treyarch will be too bothered with review scores given the massive success of the game across the globe.

If you somehow managed to miss all of the Call of Duty: Black Ops pre-launch hype, you can check out the launch trailer, and details of the new zombie mode featuring some famous faces here.

So Train2Game, do you believe the massive success of Call of Duty: Black Ops is good for the games industry? Or do you believe that it’ll just encourage developers to churn out the same old games?

And given that video games cost a lot more than going to the cinema, or buying a CD, do you think that the industry is getting too excited about the amount of money made by Call of Duty: Black Ops?

You can leave your thoughts about the success of Call of Duty: Black Ops here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Call of Duty: Black Ops smashes day one records

Call of Duty: Black Ops

Call of Duty: Black Ops has shattered n the record for day one sales in the UK, and by a long, long way too.  MCV report that day one sales of Call of Duty: Black Ops in the UK were 14% higher than that of its predecessor, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

While 14% more units of the game were sold, Call of Duty: Black Ops made Activision an extra 22% in sales. Overall, 1.4 million copies of Call of Duty: Black Ops were sold in the UK on November 9th, making £58 million in revenue.

This of course means that Call of Duty: Black Ops is bound to be number one in next weeks UK Chart!

The news of Call of Duty: Black Ops record breaking achievements in the UK comes after Activision hailed the release as the biggest entertainment launch in history. The publishing giant say that  5.6 million copies of Call of Duty: Black Ops have been sold in the USA and UK, compared to Modern Warfare 2’s 4.7 million copies.

Activision CEO Bobby Kotick is of course pleased with the success of Call of Duty: Black Ops

“There has never been another entertainment franchise that has set opening day records for two consecutive years and we are on track to outperform last year’s five-day global sales record of $550 million,”

“The game’s success underscores the pop culture appeal of the brand. Call of Duty: Black Ops is the finest game that Treyarch has ever made and raises the bar for online gameplay by delivering the deepest and most intense Call of Duty experience yet. The Call of Duty franchise has over 25 million players around the world that are engaged in billions of hours of online gameplay, and we are committed to supporting them with new content and features on a more frequent and regular basis.”

Call of Duty: Black Ops generally received very positive review scores, while retailers have been trying to out do each other in order to encourage strong sales.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on the success of Call of Duty: Black Ops? Is the game well deserving of its massive sales, or has the success of Call of Duty: Black Ops just been down to a massive hype campaign by Activision? Or perhaps it’s a combination of the two?

You can leave your thoughts on Call of Duty: Black Ops here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.