While we’ve yet to hear anything official from Activision regarding this year’s Call of Duty game (which is totally going to be another entry in the Modern Warfare saga), news regarding Call of Duty 2020 has already surfaced, and it’s not in a good place.
According to a new report by Kotaku, Treyarch, which just released Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 last year, will be taking over development duties from Raven Software and Sledgehammer Games to develop Call of Duty 2020 as Black Ops 5.
For those familiar with the Call of Duty franchise, it’s a known fact that there are three main Call of Duty studios at Activision: Infinity Ward, Treyarch, and Sledgehammer Games. Each studio has three years to craft their own take on Call of Duty, with each studio alternating releases each year. Given we just had Call of Duty: WWII in 2017, and Black Ops 4 last year, and this year will be Infinity Ward’s turn with a new Modern Warfare game, Call of Duty 2020 should be Sledgehammer Games’ turn once again. Unfortunately, that’s not happening it seems. In the report, it mentions that Raven Software was tasked to take lead on its first-ever Call of Duty main entry, with Sledgehammer Games providing support. The game co-developed by both studios will be set in the Cold War (which is said to likely involve Vietnam), though that’s not happening now.
People familiar with the situation has described the project as a “mess,” and cited tension between Raven Software and Sledgehammer Games as one of the main causes why Call of Duty 2020 isn’t in a good place right now.Now that Treyarch has been asked to step in, it’s expected that Treyarch will transition to the game to Black Ops 5, with Raven and Sledgehammer’s work on a single-player story mode transitioned to be the campaign for Black Ops 5.
Furthermore, the report mentions that Black Ops 5 is expected to be a cross-gen title, which will coincide with the launch of the PS5 and next Xbox, which are both expected to hit sometime in fall 2020.
Given how accurate the track record is of Kotaku’s Jason Schreier on these things, the chances of it being true are very high, and if so, it’s a bit worrying to be honest. Good thing 2020 is quite some time away, so Treyarch can (hopefully) salvage Call of Duty 2020 into something good.