Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is, in many ways, a huge departure for the popular shooter franchise. While every single game in the long-running franchise has placed its own unique spin on things, this year's release has made some very out-of-the-box decisions in terms of what it's going to offer and how it will present that. Ever since the official game reveal on May 17, we've been ruminating over what else we'd like to see aside from what's already been confirmed.
For instance, we know there won't be a single-player campaign, and there's going to be a new battle royale-centric mode known as Blackout, which already has fans talking. The popular Zombies mode, which has been around for 10 years, is getting several new maps with meaningful expansions and customizations as well.
But with E3 2018 around the corner, there's still a lot we don't know, and a lot we'd like to see confirmed ahead of the game's October release date. Here are a few things we're hoping to get from Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 — four, to be exact, because we're all about fun themes here.
Rewarding single-player content to make up for no campaign
For the first time ever, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 won't have anything resembling a single-player campaign or story mode. It's a concerning thought, especially for those of us who don't always want to play in or enjoy multiplayer matches. Treyarch has supplanted a single-player story mode this time around with solo missions, which will revolve around "Specialist" characters, and they'll take place in multiplayer maps. They're intended to help offer backstories for each of the Specialists and act as a bridge for new players to figure out how to use each character. It doesn't sound promising if you're looking for the traditional, explosive cinematic experience seen in prior games, but it could scratch the itch that comes along with a lack of certain content. Hopefully along with the solo missions, Treyarch is packing other important single-player focused content into the game.
Unique battle royale mechanics
With the Fortnites and the PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds of the world (and all the other me-too battle royale games out there), we really don't need more games to jump on the bandwagon. If Blackout, Black Ops 4's battle royale mode, is what we're getting instead of a single-player campaign, it had better bring the heat in terms of unique mechanics and reasons to try it out. Why else would we want to play this over Fortnite or PUBG to scratch that battle royale itch? We know the map will be 1500 times the size of the Nuketown map, with various familiar faces and lots of customization, but how will it play? Will it bring something to the table the others can't, or will Treyarch be banking on the idea that players will already be online in Black Ops 4 and won't want to swap games to play with their friends? We'll have to wait and see what happens.
Cohesion between game modes
With so many different things to do in Black Ops 4 in terms of multiplayer, solo missions, Zombies, and Blackout's battle royale mode, we're hoping to see some overarching theme to help tie things together and make for a more cohesive whole. Without a single-player mode, it could feel a bit sloppy and cobbled together, like a collection of modes that don't really make sense to slot between one another. And while this may not bother most players, it's still very much something that should be improved upon, especially since a collection of multiplayer-centric game types isn't what many fans of the series have come to expect. If Treyarch can pull it off, great, but it doesn't look like that's what's coming down the pipeline just yet.
A reason to look forward to next year's iteration
Every single year, we always wait for the latest Call of Duty announcement — sometimes even before we've had a sufficient amount of time to enjoy the last one. But with the direction the series has turned, doffing single-player and trying some very risky things out in the meantime, we'll all need some sort of reason to want to come back next year, especially if it's more of the same. Treyarch needs to knock it out of the park for us to want to try another Call of Duty if this one ends up disappointing us, and despite the fact that it'll be another developer's turn next year (Sledgehammer Games, natch) we may be abandoning the Call of Duty boat to jump on Battlefield's. Or, if you're anything like me, you'll buy and enjoy both because you love shooters. Whatever, you know?