When Call Of Duty: Black Ops Declassified arrives on November 13 it will be the series’ debut on Sony’s Vita handheld. It will also mark the first Call Of Duty: Black Ops title in which players wil not discover an arguably hidden mode that tasks them with surviving endless waves of shambling undead enemies.
“This is the first Call of Duty game on Vita, and it needs to deliver on its core strengths — arguably, multiplayer gaming with twin-stick controls in a portable format. That’s the core experience, and that simply needs to come first,” wrote Activision representative Dan Amrich on this official blog.
“There’s always a list of things you want to do and things you need to do, and at the end of the day, realistic goals are the ones that people actually attain,” Amrich added.
Though his words are entirely logical, it remains to be seen how fans will react to this news. Ever since the zombie mode was introduced to the Call Of Duty games via 2008’s Call Of Duty: World At War, it has become a favorite among fans who view it both as an excellent multiplayer offering, and as a relatively relaxing alternative to the main thrust of the Black Ops games. Will they still dig the Vita iteration of the series without ambulatory corpses to shoot?
As if to answer this question, Amrich had one more important note to offer fans: “Declassified will offer a Hostiles Mode, which challenges you to defeat waves of enemies, but alas, those enemies are not shambling corpses.” So, prospective players, will this “Hostiles Mode” be good enough to satiate your bloodlust? We’re not being hypothetical here, we’re genuinely curious: Is the draw of Black Ops’ zombies mode in the endless waves of enemies advancing on your position and forcing you to think strategically about how best to survive the onslaught? Or does the mode succeed purely because it features rotting cadavers for you to perforate with fully automatic weaponry?
If nothing else, it will be interesting to see how this game performs at retail. The Call Of Duty series is perennially successful, but it’s entirely possible that Declassified’s lack of zombies (and, let’s be honest, consumer fatigue of the series) may mark the franchise’s Vita debut as its first fiscal failure.