It's no secret that Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is getting zombies. Rumors regarding the undead's return started a few days before Advanced Warfare's release, when someone with an early copy of the game leaked zombie footage online. A couple of days later, GameStop confirmed that zombies would be part of Advanced Warfare's DLC content. More recently, Activision released a trailer officially spotlighting the game's new "Exo Zombies."
That first trailer made it look like Advanced Warfare's zombie mode would have some kind of narrative - it ends with a cutscene in which Captain Gideon gets yanked out of a helicopter by an exosuit-enhanced zombie - but it was unclear whether this was just a one-off tease or a hint at something more in-depth.
Well, if the newest teaser is any indication, Exo Zombies doesn't just have a story; from the looks of things, it's a bona fide Hollywood blockbuster. Exo Zombie's cast includes two-time Academy Award nominee John Malkovich, Bill Paxton, Rose McGowan, and - of course - The Walking Dead alumnus Jon Bernthal.
That's a lot of star power, and it looks like Sledgehammer's trying to give Exo Zombies a plot that's as impressive as its cast. The expansion is set in a world where Advanced Warfare big-bad ATLAS dropped a bomb to end a war; instead of stopping hostilities, however, things went incredibly wrong. Now, four "untrained and unprepared" ATLAS employees must fight off the undead hoards. Like the trailer says, "No warning. No back up. No one left… but us."
Previous reports said that Exo Zombies would have co-op multiplayer and would be split into four episodes. That's implicitly confirmed here, as Activision says that "the first chapter of Exo Zombies is included with the Havoc DLC"; presumably, later chapters will be included in Advanced Warfare's other DLC packs.
Gamers who want the entire Exo Zombies campaign can buy each DLC pack separately, or they can purchase the Advanced Warfare Season Pass for $50 ($10 cheaper than buying the packs individually). The Havoc DLC comes out in January for the Xbox One, and later for other platforms.
The trailer's suitably epic and fairly creepy, and in terms of storytelling the expansion looks to meet the high standards set by Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare's star-studded main campaign. At the very least, Exo Zombies' story should be a lot more fun, given the pulpy sci-fi setting and (assumed) absence of ham-fisted sentimentality. Gamers still haven't gotten to see too much of Exo Zombies’ gameplay, but with the first chapter only a month away, it's likely more footage will be released soon.
And come on, it's zombies wearing super-suits. What else do you really need to know?
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is out now for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. The Havoc DLC and Exo Zombies will release for Xbox One in January, 2015.