TO UPDATE: An Activision representative has contacted IGN yesterday with an official statement denying the reported delay of this year’s Call of Duty entry:
“We have an exciting list of premium and free-to-play Call of Duty experiences for this year, next year and beyond. Reports of anything else are incorrect. We look forward to sharing more details when the time is right.”
Our original article continues below.
Activision is apparently giving Call of Duty a break in 2023, pushing the release of Treyarch’s next entry in the series to 2024. glad.
The decision to break from the annual release cycle is because last year Call of Duty: Vanguard did not meet Activision’s expectations, Bloomberg reports. While the Vanguard was the best selling game of 2021your sales still markedly lower than the previous year’s Cold War Black Ops.
If these reports are accurate, 2023 will be the first year without a new Call of Duty in two decades. Apparently, Activision will fill the gap with continued support for this year’s Call of Duty and its free spin-off Warzone.
This year’s Call of Duty is reportedly bringing a second free spinoff, titled DMZ, which will also help bridge the gap between the main releases. According to Tom Hendersona freelance writer with a strong history of reporting on Call of Duty and Battleground 2042 leaks, DMZ is inspired by games like Escape From Tarkov, which mixes multiplayer with AI enemies and a high-pressure loot game.
Activision did not confirm the Bloomberg report. Instead, saying in a statement that it has “an exciting list of premium and free Call of Duty experiences for this year, next year and beyond.”
Review: Call of Duty needs a break
Activision isn’t the first publisher to move away from an annual release cycle. After releasing a new game seven years in a row, Ubisoft had to take a break from Assassin’s Creed. The change was also worth it; Originsreleased two years after Syndicate, it was one of the most reviewed and best-selling games in the series’ history – selling more than twice as many copies as Syndicate did in its first ten days.
Ubisoft is taking the annual release one step further and plans to turn the series into a platform with Assassin’s Creed Infinite. With the success of Warzone and the launch of the DMZ on the horizon, we could see Call of Duty follow suit.
While Call of Duty has consistently been one of the best-selling games over the past two decades, it’s hard to ignore that newer games received colder receptions at launch. Players criticized the developers for reused resources, short campaigns, and simply not being innovative.
It will be fascinating to see what Treyarch is capable of achieving with yet another year of development. Is this the moment for Assassin’s Creed: Origin for Call of Duty?