On April 26, Sledgehammer Games released a reveal trailer for Call of Duty: WWII.
So far the game reveal has been well received from the COD community and video game media companies. After the backlash and negative reviews for last year’s flop, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, it almost looked like the franchise was never going to recover.
If you were to research the most disliked videos on YouTube, Infinite Warfare would be at the number two spot, right under Justin Bieber’s music video, “Baby.”
Things started to go sidewise for the once-dominating franchise when Infinite Warfare offered a new futuristic game setting gamers disliked.
What was disliked so much about the future setting for these games was movement and the overwhelming features added. Gamers demanded it to be returned to boots-on-the-ground style games. Unfortunately, during the trailer backlash, Infinite Warfare was already in development and had to be launched due to contract obligations.
So what changed? After the release of the WWII reveal trailer, it had earned an overwhelming number of likes.
Right after COD hit its peak in popularity, the franchise started to receive backlash for not being innovative.
What is interesting is how well received WWII is, considering the community wanted something new. Ironically, that “new” was the roots of the original game.
COD: WWII is a restart for the franchise. For the younger gamers, this is a totally new game to them. For COD veterans and pro gamers, it’s a nostalgia trip with the added benefit of having polished graphics.
However, it’s not the setting alone that resulted in WWII’s reveal success. It brought a narrative familiar to war drama that game junkies adore.
When the franchised stepped into the modern setting, it became an action-packed, Michael Bay style game which induced goose bumps and adrenaline, which isn’t a bad thing.
The trailer displayed loss, desperation, fear and vulnerability. Crucial emotions that were missing in the most recent COD titles.
However, the WWII reveal trailer presented the harsh, emotional side of war through the eyes as a first infantry soldier.
What the trailer displayed was loss, desperation, fear and vulnerability. Crucial emotions that were missing in the most recent COD titles. A combination of nostalgia, dark emotion and dark opera music in the trailer breathed life into the franchise and answered many wishes the COD community wanted.
No more jetpacks, no more lasers, no more drones, no more nukes. Simplicity is key for COD. If WWII is like it’s predecessor 12 years ago, then perhaps gamers are inclined to give it a try without the worry of complicated mechanics that drowned Infinite Warfare and Advanced Warfare with distaste.
At the end of the trailer, viewers were treated with a sound effect Easter egg that only COD veterans would recognize. It was the satisfying sound of an empty clip from a M1 Garand.