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Everything we know about Call of Duty: Vanguard

If there’s one thing in the gaming industry you can count on, it’s the yearly release of a new entry in the Call of Duty franchise. For over 15 years, the series has never gone a year without putting out a new entry, with multiple sub-series like Black Ops or Modern Warfare contained under the same umbrella.

Call of Duty: Vanguard, as we now know it will be titled, will be the next entry developed by Sledgehammer Games, taking place in World War II. This team was originally in line to put out last year’s entry but was pushed to this year in favor of releasing Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War instead due to internal problems.

At this point, details are still scarce, but new reports have given us a bit of solid info to go off of. Plus, there’s plenty we can safely assume looking at the series’ past. Here’s everything we know — and suspect — about the next entry in the bestselling FPS game franchise.

Further reading

Release date

Soldiers walking through a snowy battlefield.

After the Battle of Verdansk event in Warzone, we finally got the release date for Call of Duty: Vanguard thanks to pre-orders going live. We will be storming the beaches again on November 5, 2021.

Platforms

Call of Duty: Vanguard has been confirmed to be coming to both previous- and current-gen hardware, including PS4, Xbox One, PS5, Xbox Series X/S, as well as PC.

Trailer

We’re sorely lacking any gameplay footage of Call of Duty: Vanguardand we won’t be getting it as soon as we’d hope, or even in the way we normally would. Activision didn’t present it at this year’s E3, which is where the yearly entry is usually first revealed with a trailer or gameplay. Instead, they will leverage their persistent free-to-play game entry, Warzoneto reveal the game. A similar marketing tactic was used to tease and reveal last year’s entry, Black Ops Cold War, as well, which has now given us this small teaser trailer for the game.

This teaser is more of a tone-setter, showing off some locations, weapons, and general destruction of the WWII setting, ending with the words, “See them rise.” The first actual reveal trailer has a bit more depth, showing characters doing what looks like a stealth mission on a moving train, air raids, over crumbling cities, dogfights over jungles in North Africa, tanks rolling across the desert, guerilla combat on the Eastern Front, plus more on the Western and Pacific fronts as well. This covers all the major areas of conflict in WWII, making this possibly the largest scale WWII game ever made.

As mentioned, we do know the game will take place during WWII, but that’s all the details we have to go on in terms of the game’s single-player campaign. WWII is well-trodden ground for the Call of Duty games, with Call of Duty: WWII releasing just a few years prior, so hopefully, the widened focus on each theater of war gives it some fresh gameplay opportunities.

Gameplay

Soldiers storming the beach at Normandy.

The Call of Duty Formula is pretty set in stone by now. Even though we haven’t seen a single second of gameplay yet, we feel pretty confident in saying it will be yet another solid, satisfying, and exhilarating FPS that leans a bit harder on the arcade fun side of shooters rather than pure simulation. The single-player campaign will surely feature a mix of traditional, on-foot gunfights, as well as stealth-focused operations, vehicular sections, and the large set pieces the series is known for.

Each Call of Duty title does try to innovate in some way that doesn’t drastically change the gameplay formula, such as through new movement options, so we’re excited to see just how Call of Duty: Vanguard will differentiate itself, especially when choosing to return to a familiar setting.

Multiplayer

The only thing we know for certain is that, obviously, there will be a multiplayer component to Call of Duty: VanguardAs far as maps, guns, gadgets, and modes, nothing is confirmed. If you follow Call of Duty regularly, or even any other FPS, there are some modes you expect to be there in some form, such as free-for-all, team deathmatch, some type of capture the flag, and perhaps kill confirmed. More interesting modes like gun game and prop hunt would be great to see return as well, but for now, we would only count on the tried and true classics, plus maybe one new mode, at launch.

Zombies, the third pillar in most Call of Duty titles, also makes a return. That seems fitting considering it was in World at War where the zombies mode originated. Expect more zombie blasting fun with your friends, and a massive and overly convoluted series of puzzles if you want to complete the mode fully.

Warzone will continue on as the battle royale mode for the franchise, tied in to Call of Duty: Vanguard when it transitions to the WWII setting prior to the game launching.

DLC

Another aspect we can almost guarantee will come is paid DLC. Whether it is in the form of stand-alone cosmetics or maps, or the more popular battlepass system, there will be something for you to spend your money on in Call of Duty: VanguardWe expect a season pass, or whatever system they will use, to be detailed either at the same time as, or very soon after the game’s official reveal.

Pre-order

Pre-orders have gone live for the various editions of Call of Duty: Vanguard. We have just three versions to cover: The standard edition, cross-gen edition, and ultimate edition.

The standard edition is just the game itself, but only the last-gen version, meaning the PS4 or Xbox One. It also includes access to the multiplayer beta, a Mastercraft Blueprint for Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and Warzone, Operator Arthur Kingsley for Black Ops and Warzone, and the Frontline weapons pack. This standard edition costs the traditional $60

Pre-order the Standard Edition

The cross-gen bundle is your cheapest way to get the game on next-gen right now. You get Call of Duty: Vanguard for both generations of hardware, plus all the perks included in the standard edition, with an extra 5 hours of 2WXP on top of everything else. This version hits the standard price for next-gen of $70.

Pre-order the Cross-Gen Bundle

Finally, there was bound to be at least one prestige edition, this time the ultimate edition, which gets you everything from both previous editions, including access to Call of Duty: Vanguard on both generations of hardware, plus the Task Force One pack, 5 hours of 2XP, and the Vanguard Battle Pass bundle. You will need to put down $100 for this version.

Pre-order the Ultimate Edition

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