Call of Duty: Black Ops - Multiplayer

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Black Ops 2 could violate agreement between Activision and Infinity Ward, claims report

Chris Thursten at

Court documents obtained by Game Informer suggest that the near-future setting of Treyarch's upcoming Black Ops 2 could violate the agreement between Activision and Modern Warfare developer Infinity Ward.

Infinity Ward's Memorandum of Understanding includes a cause that grants the developer authority over 'any Call of Duty title set in modern day (post Vietnam), the near future or distant future.'


The best Black Ops 2 screenshot: Treyarch motion capture horse ridden by man with toy AK

Owen Hill at

Evan mentioned this in his Black Ops 2 preview, but we thought it was worth highlighting.

Treyarch have been motion capturing horses ridden by men with toy AK-47s. You can see the results of the tech in their recent trailer, which is embedded below. Read on for a larger image of the horse and rider, along with a few screenshots of some in-game horse action, grabbed for your convenience.

Our initial verdict? Excellent equine rendering. Whether it's up to the high standards set by the probably-never-coming-to-PC Red Dead Redemption is yet to be confirmed. Which animal would you most like to motion capture?


Black Ops 2 PC will take advantage of DirectX 11. 60 frames per second still a priority

Owen Hill at

Black Ops 2 will utilise the power of DX 11 on PC. As reported on One of Swords, Treyarch’s director of online highlighted the graphical upgrades during the recent Black Ops 2 reveal presentation. Despite the technical upgrades, getting the upcoming FPS to run at a 60 frames per second on all platforms is still high on Treyarch's priority list.


Hard Questions: Black Ops 2 multiplayer cheats, dedicated servers, LAN support

Evan Lahti at

We really like grilling developers.* Hard Questions embodies our commitment to addressing the creative, technical, or customer service decisions made by developers that PC gamers care about.

*PC Gamer's legal representation would like to remind you that our regret for the lives lost by our prototype Interview Barbeque is not an admission of guilt.

I spent a day with Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 last week. After Treyarch's presentation, I borrowed a breaching charge from the studio's kitchen (the place is lousy with C4) to blast open the office door of its studio head, Mark Lamia. Entering in slow-mo with Inquiry Guns akimbo, I complimented Mark on the presidential red rotary telephone on his desk. Through a fog of drywall dust and poisonous florescent lightblub particulate, my interrogation began.

PCG: Will Black Ops 2 have dedicated servers on PC?

Black Ops 2 website reveals name, release date, promises screenshots and video to come

Chris Thursten at

Since publishing this article, there's been a torrent of confirmed Black Ops 2 news, including our Black Ops 2 preview and Black Ops 2 multiplayer cheats, dedicated servers and LAN support FAQ. There's a Black Ops 2 reveal trailer to watch too. We'll have more information online soon.

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The Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 website has gone live in the UK, confirming a rumoured release date of the 13th of November. The formal announcement is scheduled for tomorrow morning in Europe, so expect more information then.

It appears that the artwork leaked ahead of the game's announcement was genuine. At present, however, the trailers and screenshots linked to on the website all lead to 'coming soon' pages.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 multiplayer free trial starts tomorrow

Tom Senior at

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 multiplayer will be free from tomorrow through to Monday on Steam. You can pre-load the files now to ensure maximum man shooting time when the trial goes live at 10am Pacific Time (6pm in the UK). Follow the link in the Steam announcement post to grab the files.

I've been indulging a quiet Modern Warfare 3 habit recently. The immediacy of the multiplayer and the well paced unlock system make it a good game to dip into for a few quick rounds every now and then and the speed with which the game can fill a server and get everyone fighting is still impressive. It's a fast fix. Like a Big Mac. If you're in the mood for something more filling, there's always Battlefield 3, which is more like tapas, delivering varied doses of specialised satisfaction that combine to form one delicious war-meal. Yum. Now I need to leave before this analogy implodes and kills us all.


Call of Duty announcement announced for May 1

Tom Senior at

Brace yourself, it's announcement announcement time. The Call of Duty site has updated with a giant message declaring that a "Call of Duty world reveal" will arrive on May 1. Given mentions of the sequel in developer CVs and on Amazon, it seems likely that Treyarch will whip the sheets off a sequel to the stonkingly popular Call of Duty: Black Ops next Tuesday.

A marketing poster bearing the message "return for debriefing" with a familiar broody soldier silhouette appeared recently, evoking the angry debriefing sessions of the first game and adding more weight to the Black Ops 2 rumours that have been flying around recently.


Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 teased by retail poster

Tom Senior at

A mysterious blurry poster has fallen into Kotaku's hands, passed on by a "retail source." It's tagged with Activision and Treyarch's logos and features a big date and a tagline "return for debriefing."

The framing device for the Call of Duty: Black Ops single player campaign was an angry debriefing session. You'd return there between missions to listed to a man shout things like "Mason! Mason! The numbers, Mason! what about the numbers? WHAT ABOUT THE NUMBERS?" Lurking silhouettes of brooding military men has been a staple of Black Ops marketing materials in the past, too, suggesting that this could be a tease for the heavily rumoured Black Ops 2.


Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 rumoured multiplayer and release date details hit official forums

Tom Senior at

Treyarch and Activision are yet to officially announce anything about the next Call of Duty. We can expect all that to be revealed around E3 time, but there's already plenty of evidence about suggesting that this year's CoD will be Black Ops 2. A big list of features and changes attributed to the upcoming sequel has been plonked on the Black Ops forums, and since removed, and then reuploaded to some different forums, and then removed again.

MP1st noticed pulled the info from a cached copy of one of those forum posts. The list contains lots of precise details about returning game modes, ditched game modes, ditched gadgets (like the RC XD), balance changes and word of a November release date.


Sun reports terrorists using Call of Duty as training tool, global threat levels reduced

Tom Senior at

In a report that will have security officials breathing a sigh of relief across the land, daily British rag, The Sun, reports that terrorists have started using war games to train for attacks. MCV spotted the front page story, which suggests that “there has even been evidence would-be jihadists treat war games as training tools, a bit like a pilot might use a flight simulator”.

Traditional terrorist methods involve infiltration and subterfuge. It's thought that new techniques learned from video games like Call of Duty could make attackers easier to apprehend. We've contacted a nearby human being for their assessment. "I don't know," said the 5ft 7inch tall bloke from across the room, "maybe running behind a box and popping your head up every now and then so special ops forces can shoot you in the head for points may not translate especially well to a real life situation."


Call of Duty: Elite still incoming. Activision "excited to do right by the PC gamers"

Owen Hill at

Call of Duty Elite is still coming to PC, Eurogamer report. Activision Producer, Noah Heller has been talking to the website about the stat tracking service, which currently supports Modern Warfare 3 on consoles, but not PC: "We're still working on it. We can't date it yet. It's a challenging piece of development."


Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 spotted on dev CV and Amazon

Tom Senior at

The rumour mill is awash with whispers of a sequel to Treyarch's Call of Duty: Black Ops. Last month it was noted that Activision had bought up a series of Black Ops 2 domain names, a hint compounded by the recent appearance of an Amazon listing for Black Ops 2. The ad has since been pulled, but not before a screenshot appeared on Gameblog, spotted on Joystiq. That's not the only place that Black Ops 2 has appeared recently.


Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 domain name snapped up by Activision

Tom Senior at

After the success of Call of Duty: Black Ops, it seems sensible for Treyarch to use their next turn developing CoD to turn out a sequel. Gamesradar mention a Fusible report indicating that publishers, Activision have managed to secure the Black Ops 2 domain name.

Activision bought up a series of domain names up to Blackops6.com, but Black Ops 2 was held by a private owner until now. Fusible mention that the Call of Duty publisher has managed to buy it up through brand protection agency, MarkMonitor, suggesting that Activision are keen to secure rights to a site for the sequel. They could be protecting the Black Ops brand in the long term, but given the first game's sales figures a second game would be no surprise. Would you be interested in more BLOPS?


Steam Autumn sale is live: Orcs Must Die, Portal 2, Mass Effect, Renegade Ops super cheap

Tom Senior at

Do you hear that faint wailing in the background? That's the sound of a thousand bank accounts going "noooo!" at the appearance of the Autumn Steam Sale. Thankfully for our wallets, it only lasts until Sunday, with dozens of new deals every day. Consider it a warm up for the monolithic Steam Christmas sale next month.

The sale kicked off yesterday, but you've still got six hours to grab some of the fantastic day one deals. The marvellous Orcs Must Die is just £2.99 / $3.74 (we gave it a score of 90 in our Orcs Must Die review). Portal 2 is selling for just £6.79 / $10.19. If you haven't played Mass Effect yet, the first game is £2.49 / $4.99, and Mass Effect 2 is 75% off at £4.99 / $12.49.


Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 player scores world's jammiest knife kill

Henry Winchester at

http://youtu.be/wqursCdSgEM

Given the sheer number of people who have died in warfare in the course of human history, it’s fairly probable that soldiers have passed on in wildly random ways. Take this clip from Modern Warfare 3, pointed out to us by CVG. A knife is lobbed across a level, lands on a helicopter and then drops onto some unfortunate grunt below, like a particularly violent game of MouseTrap. Thing is, that’s probably happened at least once during an actual war (minus the part where the knife phases through the steel wing of the chopper), which turns this clip from hilariously jammy to faintly disturbing.


Call of Duty Elite might not make it to PC

Owen Hill at

Remember the Call of Duty social network, matchmaking and stat-tracking service, Call of Duty Elite? The one that was available on Xbox and PS3 at Modern Warfare 3's launch? The one that Activision described as a "necessity" for games? It might not make it to PC.

Beachhead Studio head Chacko Sonny implied that we were getting it a few weeks ago, abeit later than the console kids: “We’re as committed as ever to the PC, but the need to ensure a safe PC environment is greater than ever,” he said. “It’s really extensive. We need more time to get there, so Elite on PC will not launch on Day 1. We’re working our butts off to make it happen, but we won’t release it until we know that PC gamers can enjoy Elite as it’s meant to be.”

It seems the situation has changed. As Eurogamer spotted on the official Call of Duty Elite Twitter feed, we might not be getting the service at all. EVER.


Black Ops dev regrets Second Chance perk

Owen Hill at

We didn't like Black Ops as much as Modern Warfare 3 but didn't hate it either, awarding Treyarch's game with a solid 64% Not that it mattered though. Black Ops sold more copies in its first week than the superior Modern Warfare 3, which we liked a whole 15% more. Graham even described Infinity Ward's game as "fun."

David Vonderhaar, game design director at Treyarch has admitted that he regrets some of Black Ops features. In particular, he doesn't like the Second Chance Perk that let's downed players pull out a pistol and take a few pot shots before respawning. A more advanced version of the perk even let friendlies revive each other. It looked cool but broke the game for competitive play.


Modern Warfare 3 shifts fewer copies than Black Ops

Henry Winchester at

Modern Warfare 3 publishers Activision have been banging on about how their latest face-shooter has made more money than the GDP of a small country - but it seems it’s shifted fewer units than its predecessor, Call of Duty: Black Ops.

According to Eurogamer, Modern Warfare 3 has sold “just under” two million copies in the UK - 1.6 per cent less than Black Ops sold last year. Despite selling fewer units, Modern Warfare 3 has somehow made more money for Activision, bringing in £83.1 million for the uber publisher - 15 per cent more than Black Ops.

It also seems that these figures only account for PS3 and Xbox 360 copies of the game, so it’s unknown how much Activision have made from PC copies of the game - the majority of which are presumably downloads via Steam. We’re guessing many, many millions more though.


Modern Warfare 3 dev attempts to boost Metacritic score via Twitter

Owen Hill at

As reported on IGN, Studio head of Sledgehammer Games, Glen Schofield isn't happy with the way Modern Warfare 3 is getting treated on Metacritic.

It's currently got a metacritic of 82. That's a reasonable average, sitting just above our Modern Warfare 3 review score.

Glen was more upset by the user rating (formed by the public, not critics). At the time it was sitting at 1.7. Metacritic's users were making a statement. Not necessarily a truthful statement, but a statement nonetheless.


Call of Duty: Black Ops Rezurrection review

Tom Senior at

I remember storming the beaches of Normandy five years ago in one of CoD 2’s most tense and memorable levels. Yesterday in Black Ops I shot a zombie on the moon with a gun that made it vomit blood then explode. What the hell has happened to Call of Duty?

Whatever our memories of the shooter series, the zombie survival mode introduced by Treyarch in World at War has frequently been the best part of the regular Call of Duty: Black Ops packs. It follows, then, that a DLC pack made up of five zombie levels should be the best. It is, but not by much.