Abby Brammell is first playable female character to answer Call of Duty in Black Ops 3

abby brammell first female call of duty black ops 3 specialist battery
Actress Abby Brammell made history with the launch of Activision and Tryarch’s Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, and it wasn’t because the game made over $550 million in its first three days at retail. The 36-year-old actress brought to life the first ever playable female character in the franchise’s campaign mode.

Brammell spent three years playing a Special Ops soldier’s wife, Tiffy Gerhardt, on the CBS TV series The Unit. Now she’s letting players kick ass and take names in the new video game’s cooperative campaign. Brammell spent time at a motion capture studio to provide all of the performance capture and voice work for the playable female character.

“I didn’t really understand that I was the player until the first day of work.”

Brammell said she was thrilled to be “the female warrior” in COD and to embody the archetype of the feminine warrior.

“It’s so exciting for me because I feel deeply connected to that energy in my life, my own fantasy world, and my own longing for putting out into the world my own strength, magic, and intelligence,” Brammell said in an interview with Digital Trends.

The actress was kept in the dark when she auditioned for her first video game gig.

“It was so secretive,” Brammell said. “They just said ‘popular video game, very strong female character, and theatrical training would be nice.’ I was like, ‘great.’ Once I got the gig they told me it was for Call of Duty. And when I told my nephew, he was like ‘Oh my God, this is amazing.’ I didn’t really understand that I was the player until the first day of work. I was totally shocked and surprised to be given the task to take on this awesome archetype.”

According to the Entertainment Software Association, 44 percent of gamers today are female. Brammell got a crash course on today’s gaming world through Treyarch and the Internet.

“When I got the gig I had no idea there was so many girl gamers,” Brammell said. “I started to do a little research online and found out that they’re one of the biggest populations of gamers. I don’t know what the impact of this role is going to be, but I think they’re going to be happy. Maybe we’ll see some more empowerment coming.”

Black-Ops-3_Evac_Beware-of-Blast_WM

Brammell grew up spending a lot of time watching her brothers play games like Legend of Zelda in Kentucky, and later boyfriends playing Halo and Mortal Kombat at Carnegie Mellon University.

“I got totally wrapped up watching these worlds, even if I didn’t always have the controller in my hands,” Brammell said. “They were so compelling that we’d get lost in them for hours.”

After college, Brammell completely left the video game world. But thanks to her starring role in one of the biggest game franchises of all time, she’s going to spend time getting reacquainted.

“I’m totally excited to hear my voice, going around kicking ass and sounding very dangerous,” Brammell said. “I’ve got to get my nephew. I’m going to be like ‘you’re going to sit here all day and you’re just going to play.” Just so I can see what I sound like.”

As to actually picking up the controller herself after watching her nephew play, that’s in her future.

“When I got the gig I had no idea there was so many girl gamers.”

“I am totally open to that,” Brammell said. “In fact, I was saying that I got to go get a PlayStation. I don’t know what would happen if the control was in my hand right now. It would be hilarious. I should film it and we should put it on YouTube. It would be an awesome adventure. I don’t know how to work the buttons, but I am sure people would be willing to teach me.”

With the announcement of Activision Blizzard Studios, Call of Duty is actively being developed for potential TV shows and movies in Hollywood. That’s something right up the actress’s alley.

“There’s a lot of potential,” Brammell said. “The stories could get more involved. Coming from an acting point of view, the ability to get more intimate with the characters is something people respond to. With movies and television, people love watching the human journey unfold. To really start to engage that aspect would be interesting. In the game, you’re calling all the shots and you’re deep in the action. But what if you get to just sit back, relax and tell the story. That’s what I love about being an actor and a storyteller. It could just go and go.”

The video game universe has come full circle since Brammell logged hours watching others play. The YouTube “Let’s Play” phenomenon and eSports now rule the games industry. And Brammell is linked to both through Black Ops 3.

“My mom told me about eSports, she’s like ‘you know people play and people come and sit in huge stadiums to watch?’ I can see it, because I did it. It was part of my growing up. I was thrilled with watching people play. I guess it’s like the new cyber athletes, right?”

Treyarch designed Black Ops 3 with a live event button so fans can watch the upcoming Call of Duty World League seamlessly, and then jump back into the action and play as Brammell’s character in the game.

Available from: Amazon | Best Buy | Gamestop

Gaming

The history of Battle Royale: From mod to worldwide phenomenon

Battle royale games like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds’ and Fortnite have become the biggest trend in video games. The genre is also pushing the envelope in streaming and eSports in a way that might hint at the future of the industry.
DT Daily

Singer Racella talks recording, drawing inspiration from trauma

On episode 15 of DT Daily, Digital Trend's daily morning show, host Greg Nibler talked to singer-songwriter Racella about her new EP, Waves, how to make music with an iPhone, and more.
Mobile

Check out 30 of the best iPhone games you need to be playing

The iPhone has some of our favorite games available for any mobile platform. Here are the best iPhone games for every big-name genre, whether you're into puzzles, strategy, or something else entirely.
Deals

The best cheap-but-awesome PS4 game deals under $20

The PlayStation 4 has hit its stride in recent years and is now more affordable than ever. If you have a PS4 or are thinking of buying one, we’ve collected some must-have games. The best part? Each of these is just $20 or less.
Emerging Tech

Computers will soon outsmart us. Does that make an A.I. rebellion inevitable?

At this point, the question isn’t so much “if” AI will ever surpass humans in terms of thinking abilities, it’s “when.” What happens when we reach that point? Charles J. Simon attempts to answer that question in his upcoming…
Mobile

What is Android fragmentation, and can Google ever fix it?

Fragmentation on the Android platform has long been criticized as a problem for security, consistency, and app development. We take a look at Google’s attempted fixes and ask if it can do more.
Mobile

Looking Glass owners will soon be able to get more holograms on Vimeo

We're inching closer to recreating the iconic scene in Star Wars of Princess Leia calling out to Obi-Wan for help. A Brooklyn company has created the Looking Glass, a holographic display that lets you see 3D content without a headset.
Computing

The MacBook of 2021 could kiss the keyboard, and Intel, goodbye

Apple announced a new MacBook Air, which brings a fairly basic update to the line. But if you follow the rumors, there's a much bigger sea change happening. Based on patents, rumors, and pure imagination, here's what we think it'll be like.
Cars

Infiniti is using Formula One racing to hone its hybrid skills

Infiniti is partnering with the Renault Sport Formula One team, and not just to put sponsor stickers on the race cars. The luxury brand claims its engineers are working with their F1 counterparts to develop future hybrid tech.
Gaming

Blizzard Co-Founder Allen Adham says ‘we have not forgotten’ core Diablo fans

Blizzard fans are skeptical of 'Diablo Immortal,' but company co-founder Allen Adham is confident players will like it when they play it. He told us that multiple Diablo projects are underway and hinted at end-game content in 'Diablo…
Computing

Privacy is becoming obsolete, but not everyone thinks you should fear its demise

As technologies like Alexa and Siri that require more information about us continue to develop, is privacy going to fall at the wayside, or can we take back control of our data to retain our privacy?
Emerging Tech

To make more room for livestock, the Dutch will moove cows to a floating farm

A Dutch company is developing a floating dairy farm, which they hope to use as a proof-of-concept for future agricultural systems. The farm will use automated cleaning and milking robots, while recycling waste into fertilizer.
Emerging Tech

Driverless cars can only take you so far. This is how smarter cities are being built

Companies and municipalities came together at the annual Smart Mobility Summit, to share new technologies for building smarter cities. They also offered insight into the challenge cities face.
Opinion

As Amazon turns up the volume on streaming, Spotify should shudder

Multiple players are all looking to capitalize on the popularity of streaming, but it has thus far proved nearly impossible to make a profit. Could major tech companies like Amazon be primed for a streaming take-over?