This year’s installments of Battlefield and Call of Duty are taking very different approaches — and audiences are making no bones about their reactions on YouTube.
Last week, we got our first official glimpse of both Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and Battlefield 1, as the first trailers for both games hit the internet. However, it seems that audiences are reacting far more favorably to the new direction Battlefield is taking than they are to the far-future twist on Call of Duty.
The Infinite Warfare trailer was met with immediate backlash when it was uploaded to YouTube. This ill-feeling hasn’t subsided much since, with the clip now having amassed almost 1.5 million dislikes in response to about 300,000 likes — seemingly a clear statement from a vocal portion of the game’s fanbase.
On the other hand, the trailer for Battlefield 1 has sped past 1 million likes in just a few days, and has only garnered about 20,000 dislikes — which is equal to a little more than one percent of the dislikes given to the Infinite Warfare trailer. It seems that EA has done something right, and Activision has done something wrong.
While both publishers deserve credit for changing up their flagship military shooter, only Battlefield 1 seems to be resonating with audiences. It seems that most players would prefer to step back into the past, than explore what combat might be like in as-yet-unseen scenarios.
Of course, it’s true that there are plenty of other franchises that offer sci-fi FPS action, so Infinite Warfare isn’t a completely unique proposition. Period military shooters were enormously popular in the early 2000s, but since then the genre has waned, so Battlefield 1 is perhaps a more unique proposition.
It’s also important to consider just how legitimate YouTube’s tally of likes and dislikes is. The system that’s in place is open to botting and other means of influencing the poll, so while the ratio of likes to dislikes might give an overall idea of mainstream response, these figures are likely being manipulated to some degree.
Still, this could herald the beginning of a popularity shift pertaining to the two most popular franchises in the military shooter genre. Call of Duty has been king of the castle for years now, but Battlefield could take its crown in 2016 — so long as the appeal of Modern Warfare Remastered doesn’t affect the outcome.
It’s easier to respond to a YouTube video with a like or a dislike than it is to put down cash on release day. Battlefield may have gained some early ground with its reveal trailer, but it remains to be seen whether it can beat out Call of Duty in the charts later on this year.
Battlefield 1 is set to release for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on October 26, 2016.