Although Black Ops brought a lot of new elements to Call of Duty, what the game didn’t do is innovate on the gameplay front. In Black Ops 2, however, not only does the game bring a fresh take on multiplayer and single-player, including an all-new SP zombie mode, Treyarch decided to go deep into the innards of the franchise – all in an effort to give players a new, innovative experience.
Said Treyarch head Mark Lamia:
I’ve got no complaints with Black Ops. Black Ops did what we wanted it to do. It had a lot of personality and character, and I think people enjoyed the creative aspects of it, they enjoyed the balancing. When you played Black Ops there’s a lot of interesting gadgets and weapons to play with.
We had customisation in the game, we had the theatre, the emblem editor, the maps, the settings, the locations that we created, all that stuff really came through. But one of the things that it didn’t do, is it didn’t look at the gameplay and say, ‘hey, let’s significantly innovate upon some of these core systems.’ They were more like refinements and changes to proven core COD gameplay.
The reason why I talk about the personalisation and the customisation, while that may have been cosmetic in Black Ops, it’s now your gameplay in Black Ops 2.
You can kind of see how, as a studio we’re really into empowering the player to try and give them some unique aspects – to interject their own personalisation and customisation into the character. You can see that evolution, taking things like camos and emblems to the next level and putting it into the core systems. You’re going to go into games and people are going to play it in ways that you never saw it played before, with their own creative classes.
With the flexibility of that system you’re going to see that happen with players across the board. The rewards systems and core systems have changed. We’re not just rewarding people who can get kills, we’re rewarding people who are playing to the mode objectives, as well as people who are getting kills.
Clearly in order to stay alive in the game you’re going to need to be one of those people, but not just for that. I think that is going to be a fundamental change to the way that people play those games. Black Ops 2 isn’t just the next COD game – it really is a major step for the franchise.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 sees a release November 13th globally on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. A PS Vita version dubbed Black Ops 2 Declassified, will be released in tandem.