Insider Gaming is reporting that the 2024 Call of Duty game (rumored to be titled Black Ops: Gulf War) will feature an open-world campaign that is shaping up to be far more substantial than the series’ recent single-player adventures.
According to the report, Gulf War will expand upon the “Open Combat” scenarios seen in the recent Modern Warfare 3 remake. The big difference is that Gulf War‘s campaign is reportedly being designed from the start with that open-world format in mind. Among other things, that means that the campaign’s world will likely be much larger than what we’ve seen in previous Call of Duty games. Specifically, this report suggests that the game will drop you into a Far Cry-like environment complete with vehicles, fast travel, and other popular genre mechanics. However, the mode may still feature more linear narrative-based missions closer to what we’ve seen in previous Call of Duty campaigns. At present, it sounds like it will feature a Warzone-esque map that contains campaign-like missions and objectives.
While none of that information has been officially confirmed/revealed at the time of this writing, we do know that developer Raven Software is reportedly scheduled to develop the next Call of Duty campaign. That’s quite exciting in and of itself given that Raven previously contributed to some of the better Call of Duty campaigns (and other excellent shooters throughout the years). In theory, this expanded format will also offer Raven more room to expand some of their best existing ideas and try out a few new ones.
Of course, an open-world Call of Duty campaign is by no means an objective improvement over what came before (if that is indeed what we’re getting). Many modern gamers are probably all too aware of the amount of…well, lazy open-world games out there. It’s an increasingly familiar genre that struggles to entertain when it is utilized by studios that would rather offer the illusion of giving you more than try to craft a genuinely thrilling open-world environment. Considering that this sounds like a potentially transitional Call of Duty campaign, it’s honestly doubtful that it’s going to be the kind of game-changing open-world experience that the best open-world titles often are.
Still, this is a case of something new being something noteworthy. The increasingly complacent Call of Duty campaigns we’ve been treated to in recent years hit a low point with 2023’s Modern Warfare 3. Reportedly rushed to release, that campaign was comically short and strangely featured “missions” that were actually closer to Warzone matches against bot opponents. While the state of that campaign led some to believe that the franchise had essentially given up on offering noteworthy single-player adventures, this reported pivot to open-world suggests the towel hasn’t been thrown in quite yet. At the very least, it’s nice to hear that a franchise that almost automatically tops the sales charts year in and year out may be putting a little more effort into what is theoretically one-half of their intended experiences.