Home » Talking Point: Revive Me! Does ‘Call of Duty’ Have a Second Chance?

Talking Point: Revive Me! Does ‘Call of Duty’ Have a Second Chance?

by Andrew Robert Gianfermi

Talking Point is a weekly series that posits a question concerning the gaming industry. We encourage readers, as well as our writers, to offer their thoughts on the topic. Hence the name: Talking Point. Feel free to join in below.

Since last week, rumors have circulated through the internet, that the next Call of Duty game, could be set in World War 2. A mysterious picture appeared of an American fighting madly on Normandy beach with the numbers 4-8-2017 by them. This is the supposed announcement date, and correlating with past Call of Duty marketing it does fit the allotted time frame for Call of Duty announcements. Many believe this a reaction to the Battlefield franchise’s move last year, winding the clock back to a previously (mostly) unexplored area of history for Triple-A shooters. The decision paid off immensely moving at least 15 million units. While the series still has many fans and is financially successful they experienced a drastic sales drop from last year from long-time fans giving up on the IP. The reason for this is obvious: Call of Duty lost its way.

You all know that guy in your friend group who would likely go off the deep end if they made it big. Well, Call of Duty has become the gaming equivalent of going off the deep end, been in rehab for 4 years and having a toxic relationship with a Kardashian. The franchise used to be a critical examination of war, digging you in with a struggling Red Army in Stalingrad, or showing heroics in real life that don’t always end in the famous Nuke scene. Now, the franchise seems like a Saturday morning cartoon with laser guns, and shallow plot lines to boot.

It wouldn’t be the first time the gaming industry has tried to restore a franchise to its former glory. We all remember the countless failed attempts to save the Sonic the Hedgehog series. This, if the rumors are true, would be the first step to redeeming Call of Duty in my eyes. So I have to ask, will this redeem Call of Duty for you? Did you never stop playing it? More in general, what other franchises have been revived and what saved them? What saves franchises and kills them in the first place? Discuss.

3 comments

Mike Worby April 7, 2017 - 1:08 pm

Franchise fatigue is a common thing, and I think that’s more the issue than the direction the series is being taken. Assassin’s Creed is the obvious parallel here. Both series pumped out new entries with such regularity that no one ever got a chance to miss them. There’s always a new one coming. At a certain point people start to wonder why they’ve got 15 Call of Duty games on their shelf when the last 5 entries have felt so similar.

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ex fact0r April 7, 2017 - 4:53 pm

Go take a look at the top 10 best selling games of 2016 (overall, and console specific). A title that tops that list does not need a ‘second chance’. Now go look at the Metacritic scores for the Call of Duty titles that have been released since 2003; when your “weakest” titles are scoring in the mid-to-high 70’s, your franchise is in more than good standing.A lot of people like to deny it, but Call of Duty is as important, if not more important these days than a lot of iconic gaming series, including Mario and Zelda.

One thing people still somehow fail to understand is that Activision has 3 completely different studios working full time to ensure that a Call of Duty of quality is released every calendar year, and each of these titles are each getting 2/3 years of dev time. If anyone needs a ‘second chance’ it’s Infinity Ward, not Call of Duty as a whole.

The Call of Duty series has no reason to seek redemption, and it’s also not going anywhere for a very, very long time.

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