It’s going to be a long year – and that’s a good thing. While Modern Warfare 3 has occupied a lot of time in the drives of a lot of PS3 owners since its November release, there is more content to come over the next several months. And if you’re a premium member of Call of Duty Elite, you’re going to get your first two tastes of that content on February 28th.
While the content season will contain more than 20 items overall – some multiplayer maps, some game modes, and some Spec Ops missions – the first two pieces of content in the season are a Call of Duty player’s bread and butter: multiplayer maps. The seaside village of Piazza is a perfect battleground for fans of close-quarters combat; the sharp corners, tight corridors, and stone staircases all offer compelling examples of why the word “paranoia” is the same in English and Italian.
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Call of Duty players all have one big thing in common: Call of Duty. Sounds obvious, I know, but I think that’s enough. Now, some of you reading this are fantastic Call of Duty players. Some of you stink on ice. Let me slide over on this big block of frozen water to make room for you folks in the latter camp. Come sit next to me and we can talk about why we always seem to be on the wrong end of a noob tube.
That said, the gap between the masters and the students is not that wide. We’re all playing for the same reason – Call of Duty games are fun, that’s all. I’ll always take an opportunity to learn and improve, but even when I get my ass handed to me online, as long as I enjoy the company of the people I’m playing with, I’m more likely to leave a session laughing, regardless of KDR.
This is where Call of Duty Elite comes in. Not many games have 30 million people playing them, so the idea behind Elite was to give all those players a common ground – a service that would help them connect, compete, and improve. We’re all playing together as it is; let’s play together better.
You know, zombies have to take a lot of heat from the living. I mean, is it their fault that they are doomed to roam the earth, lurching from brain to brain in a murderous rampage? They’re doing the best they can with the hand they’ve been dealt.
That’s why I’m asking you, the PS3 community, to welcome some zombies into your home this weekend. The Rezurrection DLC pack comes out today for Call of Duty: Black Ops, and it contains five maps that many will approach as a thrilling first-person horror experience – or maybe, just maybe, it could be a very special chance to connect with the dearly departed.
Annihilation — the third pack of DLC maps for Call of Duty: Black Ops – comes to the PlayStation 3 late tonight after 2am Pacific Time. The DLC offers four new multiplayer arenas and a new jungle-based Zombies survival experience in Shangri-Li. In celebration of the big release, developer Treyarch has deemed that the double XP will flow all weekend long. I’ll be hosting a gameplay session this Friday night to soak some of that up myself, and my favorite game type is Domination. Truth be told, I’m not that good a shot, so objective-based modes like this one let me help the team and keep leveing up even if I’m nowhere near the top of the K/D ratios.
First Strike was fun. Retaliation rocked. But Call of Duty: Black Ops fans want more – they crave new battlegrounds and new experiences. Black Ops developer Treyarch knows this, so they’ve been busy creating another fresh batch of DLC maps: Annihilation. The newest add-on content will be ready for download from the PlayStation Store starting Thursday, July 28th.
Annihilation features four new standard multiplayer arenas – Silo, Hangar 18, Drive-In and Hazard – and the deadly jungle Zombies experience, Shangri-La. “The goals we set were about quality and variety,” says Treyarch’s Online Director, Dan Bunting. “We wanted to make everything feel unique and distinct.”
Annihilation delivers on those goals with five all-new environments:
Hopefully everybody enjoyed the double XP period for Call of Duty: Black Ops in May – neither Treyarch nor Activision wanted to see any of the PS3 fans miss out just because of the technical issues. Now the next round of Black Ops action is locked and loaded: the long-awaited Escalation DLC pack will be available in the PlayStation Store on Friday, June 10th.
Escalation features five big chunks of content – four multiplayer maps and one star-studded Zombies experience unlike any other. For fans of competitive combat, your new battlegrounds await:
Leo Tolstoy once said, “The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.” Ask any PlayStation gamer who missed out on the Call of Duty: Black Ops double XP weekend a few weeks ago, and they’ll tell you: Leo knew what he was talking about. While other platforms soaked up the extra experience points, PS3 gamers had to hang in there while PlayStation put everything in order behind the scenes. In cases like that, patience isn’t a virtue — patience is a pain in the butt.
As the double-XP date loomed nearer, more and more PlayStation gamers wondered if they’d be able to take part in the festivities, and Treyarch – developer of Black Ops – swore to fans that they would not be forgotten.
“We thought, there is no way this game is going to be successful.”
Prophetic words from Alex Rigopulos, CEO of Harmonix, recalling the early days of Guitar Hero. And when you look back far enough – past the millions of copies sold, past the weekend parties, before the game became a pop-culture milestone – his skepticism is actually very understandable.
At that point in history – 2005 — Harmonix had created several high-quality games, but none that were megahits. Frequency and Amplitude brought innovative music gameplay on PlayStation 2, following the trail blazed by Parappa the Rapper, Um Jammer Lammy, and Konami’s Japan-only Guitar Freaks. Harmonix had also worked with Konami on Karaoke Revolution with success, but even Rigopulos says “they weren’t blockbuster hits, they were base hits.”
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