Along with being the first Call of Duty iteration to take the franchise into the future, Black Ops 2 will be featuring a few clever little touches on its multiplayer side in order to help it stand out from the pack. Obviously, with an annual franchise like Call of Duty it’s going to be hard to set itself too far from past entries in the series, but developer Treyarch is giving it a shot.
One of the most exciting new additions to the franchise’s multiplayer will be not only the ability to live stream multiplayer matches, but support for up to two outside players to act as shoutcasters (or CODcasters as they’re cleverly referred to) for the match. In addition to live streaming, players will also be able to add their own commentary to matches after they’ve been played through the game’s theater mode. And there’s even support for those CODcasters to record video of themselves, in an effort to turn Black Ops 2 into a legitimate eSport.
And then when those epic matches have been completed and shoutcasted, the player can then post them online for other gamers to check out either at the Call of Duty website, or through a mobile device (Call of Duty Elite 2.0?).
It might not be a feature that many gamers will use, but the ability to live stream matches is sure to catch the attention of many die-hard Call of Duty fans out there. There are plenty of fans that currently broadcast and record their matches for all to see, but putting together all the pieces of said production (mainly combining the audio and the video) requires a tiny bit of know how. This live streaming and shoutcasting takes out the middleman, and brings the experience right to the gamer.
In addition to a new form of eSports broadcasting, Black Ops 2 will also be accommodating a feature common in the eSports world: league play. Gamers who so choose will be able to rank themselves along with other players and be matched accordingly.
There’s a certain amount of that contained within the ranking system — and that will still be included — but now certain players can join divisions and compete in “seasons” for ultimate bragging rights. Activision will wipe the slate clean between seasons, allowing players to try and hone their skills without feeling constantly at a disadvantage.
It’s a pretty clever concept, as is the idea of shoutcasting, but only time will tell whether the eSports community begins to recognize something like Black Ops 2 as a worthy contender.
What do you think of the idea of adding live streaming to Black Ops 2? Will that and league play help increase the legitimacy of Call of Duty matches? Would you like to see some of the Game Rant crew live stream their matches with some CODcasting for good measure?
Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 releases November 13, 2012 for the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC.