While most gamers have come into problems connecting to online servers in recent months, in numerous games like Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Mortal Kombat X, there are still those titles that deliver solid multiplayer play. Call of Duty, for example, typically launches with solid matchmaking and a consistent online experience throughout its 6-month+ run.
With Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, developer Treyarch is taking matchmaking to a new level, and making it more interactive and community-focused than it’s ever been before. That community focus starts with the Safe House, a new social space that’s unique to Black Ops 3.
According to Treyarch studio head Mark Lamia, the Safe House will let players spend XP, customize their classes, and even decorate in between matches. Not only that, the Safe House will be a shared online space where players can presumably interact with their friends before, in between, and after Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 multiplayer matches.
It’s unclear what form (the look and design) the Safe House will take, but it sounds a lot like Destiny’s Tower to us. Obviously, the need for vendors and whatnot doesn’t fit in with Call of Duty: Black Ops 3’s M.O, but giving players a way to interact outside of the game sounds neat. Presumably, players could get advice on loadouts and check out the other set-ups their friends have created.
“We’re architecting our own social system layer that’s going to arc over all three of the modes. You’re going to know where friends are and what they’re playing. When we looked at data from Black Ops 2, we discovered that people were playing multiple game modes in a single session, and we realised we had to make that easier, especially now we have a co-op experience.”
The Safe House doesn’t extend just to the multiplayer part of Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, but also the game’s single player and cooperative modes, like Zombies. In essence, it sounds like players will be able to keep track of what their friends are doing at all times, which could prove helpful considering Black Ops 3’s focus on cooperative play. In past games, single player, multiplayer, and co-op all took on different forms, but this year’s game allows players to group up with three friends and transition from the campaign to multiplayer and then to Zombies with minimal interruption.
Speaking of Zombies, apparently Call of Duty fans are due for a full reveal of Call of Duty: Black Ops 3’s Zombies World mode at Comic-Con 2015, so look for more details about that early next month. Zombies is the last remaining piece of the core Black Ops 3 puzzle, and it’s arguably the element fans are dying to see.
Given that Activision has found tremendous success with Destiny, especially as an ongoing online experience, it’s no surprise that they are bringing a popular feature from that franchise into Call of Duty. Despite strong sales year in and year out, the Call of Duty series is still on a downward course, and anything that could help the franchise course correct would be welcome.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 releases November 6, 2015 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.