Infinity Ward says Modern Warfare's PS4-exclusive Survival mode is just 'a sliver' of Spec Ops

(Image credit: Activision)
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Yesterday's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (opens in new tab) story trailer brought action, intrigue, and an unexpected surprise. The Special Operations "Survival mode" teased in the PlayStation 4 version of the trailer will be PS4 exclusive (opens in new tab) until October 1, 2020. Activision had previously said that "post-launch gameplay content, including new multiplayer maps, new multiplayer modes, special ops missions and more will release simultaneously across all platforms (opens in new tab)," but the real shock was the length of the exclusivity period. A year is a long wait no matter how you cut it.

Activision hasn't yet responded to my inquiries, but Infinity Ward narrative director Taylor Kurosaki addressed some complaints on Twitter yesterday, saying that Survival mode, "which is a sliver of Spec Ops," is the only exclusive content.

"100% of the player base gets Spec Ops and everything else in the game, day one. Survival mode is the only thing in the game with a timed advantage to Sony," he tweeted (opens in new tab). "You can play Spec Ops and every new bit of content we drop, day one."

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Today, Infinity Ward senior communications manager Ashton Williams also weighed in, with a message posted in the Modern Warfare subreddit (opens in new tab)

"To be clear, our all-new Special Ops mode will be releasing on all platforms on October 25th. We’re looking forward to revealing Special Ops on October 8th. When we launch on October 25th, everyone on all platforms will be getting Modern Warfare which includes Campaign, the all-new Special Ops mode and the entirety of Multiplayer, which is a massive experience we’ve worked to create. Special Ops Survival is an additional, classic mode that will be available on PS4," she wrote.

"We have made many changes this year with the goal to make the entire experience better for all of the Call of Duty community, including no season pass, crossplay across all platforms, and that all post-release maps and modes will be coming to all platforms at the same time. We understand that some may still be disappointed to not be able to play classic Special Ops Survival day one, we hear you. Please know that we are working hard to make sure this is the best Call of Duty we’ve ever made and the best experience possible for fans."

I've reached out again to Activision for comment on the PS4 exclusivity period, and will update if I receive a reply. A closer look at the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare campaign will take place at the end of September, roughly a week before the Special Ops premiere.

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.