In what will come as likely a shock to nobody, it looks like Treyarch is back at work, hiring programmers for their next Call of Duty title. What may come as a bit of news to fans is that apparently, it looks like the game in question will not be merely another entry into the series, but Black Ops 2, a direct sequel to their best-selling game of all time.

That’s according to ThatVideoGameBlog, who are claiming that the latest issue of OPMUK is dropping a sizable number of hints that Treyarch is not only staffing up for their next inevitable CoD title, but that it’s seeming more and more likely that the game will be a direct sequel to Black Ops.

We’ve known that there was a likelihood that a sequel was in the works for some time, with Treyarch posting job openings in March, and a Community Manager confirming that a Black Ops sequel was possible in the studio’s future. The fact of the matter is that Activision and Treyarch would have to be out of their minds to not be planning a sequel to the game, given its record-shattering sales.

But while the game itself is a foregone conclusion, whether it will be a continuation of the first game’s plot or merely give another dose of the cinematic presentation and new mechanics of Black Ops is anyone’s guess. Without a doubt, the biggest surprise in all of this news is just how far off many predictions were in the wake of the Infinity Ward/Activision split.

Some expected that Treyarch – perhaps unfairly known as the makers of ‘inferior’ CoD titles – would absolutely bomb on Black Ops, due to inferior gameplay and fan backlash over Activision’s legal drama with Modern Warfare developer Infinity Ward. But the opposite took place, with Treyarch delivering the highest-grossing title in the history of the series, and Modern Warfare 3 grabbing headlines already, even without the studio’s founders on board.

Given the mass exodus of employees from Infinity Ward, and regardless of how you may feel about Activision’s way of doing business, or the quality of Black Ops, the fact is that Treyarch is now the most experienced studio currently working on the Call of Duty brand. And no matter how the games turn out, it is seeming more and more likely that both 2011 and 2012 will be seeing the release of a new CoD installment.

Is that a dream come true to you fans, or were you hoping for at least a little breathing room to see if Battlefield 3 was all it’s cracked up to be? We’ll keep you up to date on any and all news regarding a potential sequel.

Call of Duty: Black Ops is available now for the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.

Source: ThatVideoGameBlog