Run for the hills, the shaders are coming. During a multiplayer session of Call of Duty: Black Ops - Cold War (opens in new tab) hosted by Activision, I was bummed to see the return of a nuisance that Modern Warfare players on PC know too well: shader installation.
For those that haven't been dealing with Call of Duty's shader addiction for the past year, they're sluggish 5-10 minute installs that ambush players when they load the game from a fresh install or new patch, effectively forcing them to sit around on the main menu while shaders are reconfigured for the campaign and multiplayer.
Why does Call of Duty have to do this? I have no idea, and I doubt anyone working on the games is psyched about it either. It appears to be a necessity tied to the new engine that Modern Warfare and Cold War are built on. I'd hardly mind the shaders if it only happened on the first launch, but in Modern Warfare installs pop up after major and minor patches. Yet another shader install is the last thing I want to see after downloading Modern Warfare's famously gigantic patches (opens in new tab). I was hoping that Cold War would sidestep this annoyance, but signs point to another year of shader woes.