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"Know your history or be doomed to repeat it."
— Tagline

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is an upcoming first-person shooter video game developed by Treyarch and Raven Software for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and Microsoft Windows. It is set in the early 1980s and is a direct sequel to the original Call of Duty: Black Ops. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is the seventeenth game in the Call of Duty franchise and the sixth game in the Black Ops series. Announced on August 26th, 2020, the game is set to be released on November 13th of the same year.


In May 2019, it was reported that Treyarch would take over the Call of Duty 2020 project following tensions between Sledgehammer Games and Raven Software during the development of the game[1]. On August 4, 2020, Activision announced that Treyarch and Raven Software were co-developing the game which would be known as Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War[2]. The two studios focused on different parts of the game; Raven Software designed the Campaign mode while Treyarch developed its Multiplayer and Zombies modes.

While sharing "underlying technology" with the revamped engine from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Black Ops Cold War used a different iteration of the IW Engine whose tools and technologies were created in 2015 starting with Call of Duty: Black Ops III and rebuilt "to be scalable and broad to work on future platforms"[3]. The technologies included Real Time Lighting which allowed "the lighting to be adjusted in real time during development" as well as global illumination and ray-tracing. The game would also showcase volumetric fog[3]. On the next-gen platforms Black Ops Cold War is expected to support 4K resolution and 120 frame-per-second.[4]


"Black Ops Cold War will drop fans into the depths of the Cold War’s volatile geopolitical battle of the early 1980s. Nothing is ever as it seems in a gripping single-player Campaign, where players will come face-to-face with historical figures and hard truths, as they battle around the globe through iconic locales like East Berlin, Vietnam, Turkey, Soviet KGB headquarters and more."
— description[5]

The Campaign mode of Black Ops Cold War was designed and developed by Raven Software which was already designing a campaign based on the Cold War before Treyarch took the project over[6]. The game is a direct sequel to the original game Call of Duty: Black Ops set in the early 1980s and feature returning characters such as Alex Mason, Frank Woods and Jason Hudson while introducing a new cast of characters including Russell Adler.

The campaign was co-written by Murray Kraft, Lead Narrative Designer at Raven Software, and David S. Goyer who was a story consultant on Black Ops and co-wrote Call of Duty: Black Ops II[7]. For its main protagonist, Bell, Raven decided to allow the players to create their own character by choosing their name, race, gender and backstory [8]. The NPC characters will react differently based on the gender (male, female or gender neutral)[8]. While Bell will remain silent throughout the campaign[9], players will be able to pick various dialog lines that will change the way the missions would play out. Players will also be able to choose one out of 15 "physological profiles" for Bell that will slightly affect the gameplay, giving bonus to the players. Choosing "Paranoid" will increase the aim down sight (ADS) speed, "Violent Tendencies" will increase bullet damage, "Lone Wolf" will allow player to sprint longer, "Professional" will give full movement speed while ADS.[8]

Black Ops Cold War will also feature different endings based on the action of the players[9], similarly to Black Ops II campaign. Players will also have the possibility to use different save slots.[9]


In 1981, US President Ronald Reagan tasked CIA operative Russell Adler to hunt down Soviet agent Perseus to prevent an attack on the free world. Adler assembles an elite team of operatives including "Bell" with the help of Alex Mason, Frank Woods, and Jason Hudson.




"Bring a Cold War arsenal of weapons and equipment into the next generation of Multiplayer in Call of Duty®: Black Ops Cold War. Engage in deniable operations as an elite operative using state of the art tools of the tradecraft across a variety of experiences from small skirmishes to all out, vehicle-fueled warfare."
— description[5]

There are currently 2 modes that have been revealed in the Cold War reveal. V.I.P Escort, and Ground War. With V.I.P Escort being entirely new and Ground War utilising a similar basis to the Modern Warfare variant.[10]

Multiplayer mode will feature crossplay and cross-gen as well as a Battle Pass and free post-launch content.


Game ModesEdit



"Uncover dark Cold War experiments that unleash a new Zombie threat to take on in frightening and intense co-operative gameplay with friends."
— description[5]

Zombies mode is confirmed to appear in Black Ops Cold War. A short teaser was released on the 9th of September alongside the Worldwide Multiplayer Reveal, confirming the return of the M1911, the Perk-a-Cola Juggernog, and the Monkey Bomb. A teaser was released on September 25th, 2020 on Pawn Takes Pawn on the url /decayedanddegraded. Another short teaser was revealed on Pawn takes Pawn on the url /truthbomb, with a full reveal scheduled to release on September 30th, 2020.

Weapon CamosEdit

Woodland: Classic, Urban, Desert, Red, Wasp, Duckweed
Digital: ACU, Urban, Navy, CADPAT, MARPAT, Relish
Tiger: Classic, Arctic, Red, Blue, Crimson, Nile
Frogskin: Spots, Red, Classic, Blue, Poison Dart, Firestarter
Flecktarn: Classic, Urban, Arctic, Wasp, M84, Brushfire

Splinter: Urban, Arctic, M90, Hunter, Tundra, BEO GAM

Dragon: Frostbite, Ash, Marsh, Phantom, Crimson, Oceanic

Completionist: Silver, Gold, Ruby, Diamond, Gun Metal Black Carbon, Liquid Metal (Mercury)


"Black Ops Cold War will also support and build on the hit, free-to-play experience Call of Duty: Warzone."
— Call of Duty website description.[11]

Call of Duty: Warzone will also share content with Black Ops Cold War including shared progression and inventory system.[12]



On August 7th, 2020, a short distorted clip appeared during matches inside the Verdansk map from Call of Duty: Warzone (within Modern Warfare). The clip showed two phrases "Know your history" and a phrase in Russian "обречены на её повторение" which translated to "doomed to repeat".

Pawn Takes PawnEdit

Main article: Pawn Takes Pawn

On August 10th, 2020, boxes sent by Activision to several influencers and media outlets were opened. The boxes contained a projector and several slides which led to the discovery of an ARG and a website called Pawn Takes Pawn.

The ARG lasted 9 days and was completed after the community uncovered a page of the website called "/playthegamefindthetruth" which featured the Black Ops Cold War teaser trailer "Know Your History".

"Know Your History" Warzone EventEdit

On August 26th, 2020, a new playlist titled "Know Your History" was added to Call of Duty: Warzone. The playlist allowed infinite respawn and locations on the were redacted, during the game the player screen could distorted and accompanied by voices for a few seconds. Various soundtracks from the Black Ops franchise could also be heard during the game.

When played, players were tasked to complete four contracts, or "Steps to Freedom", one after the other with each contract reward a special item when completed.

  • 1. "Collect the Map Codes"/"Intel by All Means"
    • Acquire five intel files from killing enemies or looting crates.
    • Reward: Epic "All the Guns" Emblem
  • 2. "Secure the Key"
    • Acquire a key card in a marked location.
    • Reward: Epic "Ascension" Calling Card
  • 3. "Crack the Map Code"/"Code Breaker"
    • Acquire the cipher from a crate in a marked area.
    • Reward: Epic "Test Pattern" Weapon Charm
  • 4. "Wield the Weapon"
    • Acquire the weapon in a designated location.

After the players completed the first three contracts, they are given a coordinate such as F5, H8 or D5, etc. These coordinates pointed to a specific area on the Verdansk map where the players could locate Frank Woods. Interacting with him would reward the players the Legendary "Bay of Pigs" SKS blueprint.

Once the match timer closed in on the final seconds, the announcer of either factions would say "Ascension 7-15-1-2-19-7-25-6-13-6-7-15-14-0", before the screen would cut to the start of the Black Ops Cold War teaser trailer. However, not long after starting, all of the players in the match were redeployed near the Stadium without weapons, with the gas circle rapidly closing behind them. The players were forced to hastily run to the Stadium, all while escaping from the gas and dodging NPC airstrikes guarding the Stadium. During their run, they could see words flashing on their screen. Upon reaching the Stadium, the reveal trailer for the game would be played. After its conclusion, the match would automatically end.

The event was available between August 26 and August 29, 2020.


There are three editions of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War available, each varying in price and content. Each edition also features two special pre-order bonuses in the form of the Confrontation Weapons Pack and the Frank Woods Operator Bundle for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Warzone. In addition, pre-ordering any version of the game will give the player instant access to the early open beta.

Standard EditionEdit

The Standard Edition of the game is available for purchase for $59.99. It includes:

  • The full game.
  • Confrontation Weapons Pack.

Cross Gen-BundleEdit

The Cross-Gen Bundle of the game is available for purchase for $69.99. It includes:

  • The full game.
  • Confrontation Weapons Pack.
  • Free Cross-Gen version of the game when it becomes available.

Ultimate EditionEdit

The Ultimate Edition of the game is available for purchase for $89.99. It includes:

  • The full game.
  • Confrontation Weapons Pack.
  • Land, Sea and Air Pack.
  • Three special operator skins.
  • Three special weapon blueprints.
  • Battle Pass Bundle, featuring a free Battle Pass and 20+ tiers.
  • 10 free tiers in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Warzone.
  • Free Cross-Gen version of the game when it becomes available.


Promotional ImagesEdit




Editions CoversEdit



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