Call of Duty: Black Ops - Cold War art is surprisingly bright and colorful

(Image credit: Activision)

Activision finally confirmed yesterday that the next game in the Call of Duty series is, as we've long known, Call of Duty: Black Ops – Cold War. That's all it confirmed at the time, unfortunately, as the full reveal won't happen until next week. But the teasing isn't finished just yet.

Today developer Treyarch dropped some key art from the game, and it's a pretty big departure from what we've come to expect. The rugged, square-jawed soldiers are still there, but the eye-catcher is how colorful and almost cheery it all is, courtesy of all the propaganda imagery—Soviet on the left, American on the right—that actually makes up the uniforms and the borders surrounding them.

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That all fits with the motif of the teases we've seen so far, which have focused on the subterfuge, propaganda, and back-room maneuvering that fueled the Cold War. That theme was expressed most explicitly in a teaser released along with yesterday's title confirmation, built around a real-world interview with Soviet defector Yuri Bezmenov in which he discussed the Soviet strategy of subverting Western domination through a process of "demoralization, destabilization, crisis, and normalization."

How large men with guns fit into that equation isn't clear yet, but an earlier ARG hinted that it could somehow involved the Cold War-adjacent conflict between China and India in the early 1960s. We'll find out soon enough: The worldwide reveal of Call of Duty: Black Ops – Cold War is set to take place on August 26.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.