While Activision’s Call of Duty franchise is going strong in the states, there are other parts of the world where the shooter series could use a huge boost. Among those areas is China, home to a very different type of gamer than your typical modern military FPS fan for several different reasons.
See, in China, the sale of consoles has been banned since 2000, leaving many gamers with two options: purchase their consoles on the black market or head over to the local Internet café. Call of Duty, and many titles like it, hasn’t caught on in China due to a lack of interest but because the country’s government forbids the consoles that run it.
But Activision is letting the gamers of China off the hook, they’re planning to evolve the Call of Duty experience, in cooperation with Tencent Holdings Limited, into something more their style. That experience will become known as Call of Duty Online, and will be a markedly different entity than the Modern Warfare 3 or Black Ops 2 that gamers in the states know and love.
Call of Duty Online will be a free-to-play experience that uses in-game transactions to propel the gamer deeper into the rabbit hole; players will be able to purchase different ways to customize their weapons, perks, and gear. Essentially Call of Duty Online will be a free-to-play FPS for the Chinese market, which uses Call of Duty and the modern military first person shooter as its milieu.
And for any gamers that have hoped for the day when the words “Call of Duty Online” might be uttered, fear not this isn’t a completely new experience, but a riff on previous Modern Warfares’ multiplayer. The idea is that the micro transaction-based, but free-to-play experience would circumvent the already high cost of gaming at an Internet café.
Call of Duty Online is the perfect way for Activision to offer Chinese gamers the same type of experience fans across the world have loved since 2007.
Do you think Call of Duty Online, a micro transaction-based version of the multiplayer shooter, could work in the US? Will we ever see the day when Activision completely abandons the single player elements of Call of Duty?