This year’s Call of Duty has been revealed as Modern Warfare III, and it’s coming November 10. Publisher Activision dropped a brief teaser, featuring an abstract mosaic of familiar characters from the franchise — Captain Price and Vladimir Makarov — and a voiceover saying, “Never bury your enemies alive.” There’s also the mention of ‘heads of snakes,’ which possibly alludes to the ultranationalist Russian Makarov, who also served as the main antagonist of the original MW3 (2011). Sledgehammer Games is taking the lead on developing the sequel, which is part of a trilogy of Modern Warfare soft reboots, which started back in 2019.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3’s release date matches a report from May, which suggested that Activision was planning a reveal sometime in early August, also implying that it was a continuation of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2’s arc. The publisher had originally decided against dropping a standalone title this year, skipping its annual release cycle, and instead focusing on a ‘premium expansion’ that included a campaign DLC and a classic map pack. As per Bloomberg games reporter Jason Schreier, the company had a change of heart earlier this year and decided to launch it as a full-price game. The teaser is short on details, though a recent tweet from the Call of Duty account seems to indicate that weapons and operators from Modern Warfare 2 would carry over to the sequel.
This is big news for the multiplayer crowd as they won’t have to leave behind unlocked rewards and paid items from the older instalment. The method seems quite similar to a live-service experience, which was suggested by an Activision spokesperson in 2022, so it gets regularly updated with new content. Sledgehammer Games was previously in charge of developing Call of Duty: Vanguard — received poorly — with additional support from Treyarch and Infinity Ward. The publisher rotates between these three studios for its annual releases, breaking the cycle last year and moving Treyarch’s planned title from 2023 to 2024.
Reports also claimed that Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 would get at least two beta weekends for multiplayer testing, with the first one solely aimed at PlayStation — set to run from October 6–10. This special treatment may change, taking Microsoft’s ongoing buyout of Activision for $69 billion (about Rs. 5,71,316 crore) into consideration. The second beta weekend will allegedly run from October 12–16 and grants entry to Xbox and PC players, as well. Keeping in tradition, a campaign early access is also expected for pre-order customers, reportedly going live on November 2. For now, there’s no telling if MW3 would also fall under the $70 category, though the franchise will be available on PlayStation for another 10 years, at least.