The subject of this article appears in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War The subject of this article appears in Call of Duty: Warzone The subject of this article appeared in Zombies mode The subject of this article exists in or is relevant to the real world.

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


Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is a 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 was released on November 13th, 2020.

Development[edit | edit source]

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]

Campaign[edit | edit source]

"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."
— Battle.net 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 non-binary)[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]

Plot[edit | edit source]

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.

Missions[edit | edit source]

There are 16 main missions in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, and each of them is listed below. Depending on the player's choice in Identity Crisis, the mission order will branch out to either The Final Countdown or Ashes to Ashes.

  1. Nowhere Left to Run
  2. CIA Safehouse E9
  3. Fracture Jaw
  4. East Berlin Briefing
  5. Brick in the Wall
  6. Redlight, Greenlight
  7. Echoes of a Cold War
  8. Lubyanka Briefing
  9. Desperate Measures
  10. Cuba Briefing
  11. End of the Line
  12. Interrogation
  13. Break on Through
  14. Identity Crisis
  15. The Final Countdown
  16. Ashes to Ashes

Characters[edit | edit source]

Locations[edit | edit source]

Factions[edit | edit source]


Weapons[edit | edit source]


Multiplayer[edit | edit source]

"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."
— Battle.net description[5]

There are currently 2 modes that have been revealed in the Cold War reveal. VIP Escort, and Ground War. With VIP 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.

Maps[edit | edit source]

Game Modes[edit | edit source]


Perks and Scorestreaks[edit | edit source]


PS4 Alpha[edit | edit source]

An open PS4-exclusive Alpha was announced on September 16th, 2020 and ran from September 18th to September 20th.

The Alpha featured various sets of weapons, equipment as well as Perks and Wildcards unlocked from the start. Different classic modes were available such as Team Deathmatch, Domination or Kill Confirmed with the brand-new Combined Arms mode.

Five maps were available: Armada, Crossroads, Miami, Moscow and Satellite.

Beta[edit | edit source]

The PS4-exclusive Open Beta ran from October 10th to 12th. Players who had pre-ordered the game could gain early access to the Beta 2 days prior to the Open Beta on October 8th.

The Open Beta for all platforms featuring cross-play functionality is scheduled to run from October 17th to 19th. Xbox One and PC players who had pre-ordered the game will gain early access to the Beta on October 15th while all PS4 players have access to the Beta.

The Beta features a unique progression consisting of 40 levels which unlock weapons, equipment, perks, wildcards and scorestreaks. The selection of maps is expanded by the new map Cartel. New game modes are scheduled to be available such as: VIP Escort, Combined Arms: Assault and Fireteam. The Beta also includes Frank Woods as an available operator and removes Vargas.

Beta Schedule:

  • Open to PS4 pre-orders
    • October 8, 2020 - level cap at Rank 16 - New map Cartel
    • October 9, 2020 - level cap at Rank 25 - New mode VIP Escort
  • Open to all PS4 players
  • Open to Xbox and PC pre-orders and all PS4 players
    • October 15-16, 2020
  • Open to all players
    • October 17-19, 2020

Zombies[edit | edit source]

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

Zombies mode returns in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, featuring a brand new sequel-story to the previous Aether story known as the Dark Aether story starting with the map Die Maschine, which takes place in an abandoned Nazi facility in Poland. For the first time in Treyarch Zombies, the player is able to choose from a selection of various operators including Russel AdlerLawrence Sims, and Frank Woods, as well as a weapon rarity system, loadouts, and the ability to end the game by calling in an exfil and surviving an extremely difficult wave of enemies. Black Ops Cold War also feaures the return of original Perk-a-Colas such as JuggernogSpeed Cola and Deadshot Daiquiri with updated machines to fit the 1980's aesthetic (including replacing bottles with soda cans) with a brand-new Perk called Elemental Pop, and puts the player as part of a CIA known as Requiem, an anomalous task-force led by Commanding Officer Grigori Weaver, returning from the original Call of Duty: Black Ops campaign. The game is set to launch with Die Maschine and Dead Ops Arcade 3.

Warzone[edit | edit source]

"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]

Marketing[edit | edit source]

Teasers[edit | edit source]

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 Pawn[edit | edit source]

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 Event[edit | edit source]

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 map 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.
    • Reward: Legendary "Bay of Pigs" SKS blueprint.

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.

Editions[edit | edit source]

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 Edition[edit | edit source]

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

  • The full game.
  • Confrontation Weapons Pack.

Cross Gen-Bundle[edit | edit source]

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 Edition[edit | edit source]

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.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Promotional Images[edit | edit source]

Campaign[edit | edit source]

Multiplayer[edit | edit source]

Zombies[edit | edit source]

Editions Covers[edit | edit source]

Videos[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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