(Pocket-lint) – There are certain fixtures you can rely on in the gaming calendar, releases that come around like clockwork, and a regular Call of Duty release is absolutely one of the most predictable. It’s a series that has put out roughly a game per year for absolute aeons now, and with Black Ops Cold War firmly out there now, it’s time to start looking forward to what’s next.
Rumours and details are starting to circulate around what we can expect from 2021’s Call of Duty, so we’ve gathered all the information you need right here. Read on to find out everything you need to know.
COD Vanguard release date
As already discussed, Call of Duty games don’t tend to work on particularly flexible release timings – you can generally expect one to come out in Autumn each year, and it looks like 2021 should be no different on that front.
Activision has finally confirmed that the next game’s main developer is Sledgehammer Games, which previously created Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and World War II, both relatively solidly received entries in the series.
Now things are starting to ramp up even further, and multiple leakers have claimed that the game will be unveiled through an in-game event in Call of Duty: Warzone on 19 August 2021 – which should be a bit of fun, going by the Black Ops reveal last year.
Official accounts are teasing the imminent reveal, as you can see below:
— Call of Duty (@CallofDuty) August 12, 2021
And a select group of streamers and influences have been sent the following clip further demonstrating that we’re on the cusp of finding out more:
I thought this email was about my extended warranty?
Turns out it was this pic.twitter.com/zqsRAbjKLK
— //Stodeh// (@StodehTV) August 13, 2021
Hopefully, we should know more very soon.
COD Vanguard platforms
When it comes to platforms, Black Ops Cold War can again be a firm guide for what to expect from 2021’s Call of Duty – it’ll be on a heck of a lot of platforms, basically. Next-generation consoles will be approaching their first anniversary when the game releases, so you can expect them to fly the flag for more graphically intensive and smooth-running gameplay.
Activision said as much in a recent earnings call, confirming that the game is being “built for next-gen”, across all game modes, which should mean for better visuals.
However, there will still be tens of millions of players who are on the PS4 or Xbox One, so the game will absolutely come out on those platforms as well, and it’s subsequently been confirmed that the game will be cross-platform and cross-generational, just like Cold War offers.
Whether an extra year in the oven can see the next COD push its graphics further than Cold War will remain to be seen, of course, but we’re hoping for 4K action and ray tracing to make sure everything looks its very best.
COD 2021 gameplay
Here’s where things might be a little harder to predict than you might think – while there are a few things we can be certain of when it comes to a COD game, there are still some real variables.
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What we can rely on is that it’ll be a first-person shooter with quick time-to-kill and twitchy gameplay and that it’ll come with a relatively short but bombastic campaign, alongside a chunky multiplayer component. That multiplayer will have various team modes across different objective styles, and use both new maps and eventually a selection of remastered classics.
The above is true of pretty much every COD game, but when you look at Sledgehammer’s previous games you can see some variety – in particular when it comes to player movement. Advanced Warfare featured possibly the most in-depth and radical movement in any COD game to date, with double jumps, boosting, and more allowing for truly vertical tactics.
That has since been rolled back as players were divided by where it took the series, but it’s entirely possible we’ll see another such departure from the norm. Equally, the WWII route would see us get another down-the-line COD with limited movement that’s more reliant on aim than traversal.
We’ll be able to get more of a sense of what to expect gameplay-wise as more information trickles out ahead of the game’s release.
Another open question is how the new game will integrate with Call of Duty: Warzone, which has smashed expectations to gain nearly 100 million players already. The integration with Cold War in December 2020 was more than a little clumsy and bug-ridden, but new reports indicate that it’ll be smoother for Vanguard, including a day-and-date release of a new map for the huge battle royale game.
COD Vanguard story and title
On the story front, what we said about player movement is instructive – Sledgehammer has created two CODs on its own so far, working as support on others, and they’re drastically different from each other: Advanced Warfare and World War II. The safe money has long been on one of those franchises getting a sequel.
The latest indication on this front is that the series will be returning to more vintage gameplay – ModernWarzone reported that its sources indicate the game will be called Call of Duty WWII: Vanguard and that title has been confirmed by multiple other reporters in recent times. Whether that ends up being the final title, it sure sounds like WWII is the most likely setting of those on the table. Images that have started leaking recently all but completely confirm this, and are being widely shared on social media.
Call of Duty: VANGUARD
WW2 Pacific theater.
Contains some remastered maps from CoD WaW (not clear which ones at the moment).
Treyarch is assisting in development.#CallofDuty #CODVanguard #CoD pic.twitter.com/4B41SMXavZ
— Solidas (@solidas6) August 12, 2021
Alpha builds of the game have also appeared on both Battle.net and the PlayStation Network’s servers, revealing a different codename, Slipstream. This is something that’s been noticed for COD games pre-release before, so it’s a good sign that the game is nearly ready, but Slipstream will be nothing more than a temporary title, as far as we know.
Slipstream (COD 2021 Alpha) (PS5)
Download Size : 35.322 GB
— PlayStation Game Size (@PlaystationSize) July 1, 2021
The game will apparently have both multiplayer and singleplayer elements, and will also bring zombies to the table despite not being a Treyarch game, which is a fairly interesting development.
On top of all that, a recent Activision earnings call confirmed that Call of Duty will be returning to a “setting players know and love”, which sounds a lot like its original WW2 destination, to us.
What setting the game has is likely to be the biggest variable for both its gameplay and story, in terms of tone and plot, so it’ll be interesting to see if this is all confirmed. When we get more of a sense for this, we’ll be able to start drawing conclusions about what shape its story might take.
Writing by Max Freeman-Mills. Originally published on .