With the debut trailer for Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 officially released last night new details about the game have emerged that, if fully realized, promise to expand the franchise into a few new gameplay directions.
As revealed in the trailer, the bulk of Black Ops 2 takes place in the year 2025 where a [very aged] Sgt. Frank Woods from the original Black Ops details the problems with creating an entirely drone army. What wasn’t too clear from the trailer is that the game will also feature segments that take place in Afghanistan during the 1980’s. Small bits of the Afghanistan level can be seen in the trailer (look for the firefight on horseback) but it was not clear at the time that these parts take place in the past. [Update] It has also been confirmed that Frank Woods will be playable in some segments, and that the 2025 setting will have you play as David Mason, son of Black Ops’ Alex Mason.
Even more noteworthy than having levels that take place in different times, is that Black Ops 2 will feature branching storylines and more open gameplay than what is traditionally found in other Call of Duty titles.
During certain parts of the game players will be given the freedom to push the narrative in different directions based on choices they make. Their choices, and resulting successes or failures, will affect the overall story and how events unfold. Additionally, some of the game’s levels will allow players to approach objectives in a more open manner, with enemy reactions and spawns adjusting based on those decisions.
It’s still a little early to form a complete picture of how all of this will work in the final game, but it certainly seems like Black Ops 2 is attempting to push the franchise in some new and interesting ways.
One last bit of good news is that a zombie mode is confirmed to be included with Black Ops 2, because it would not be a Treyarch Call of Duty without zombies.