Since it was first introduced via Punch-Out in ’83, the concept of regenerating health has become a tried-and-tested hallmark of the video game industry, and if there’s one franchise that embraces the game mechanic wholeheartedly, it’s Call of Duty. In the heat of battle, players simply have to avoid taking damage for a set amount of time and voila, your in-game avatar is right as rain.
That all changes with the launch of Call of Duty: WWII though, with developer Sledgehammer Games revealing that, in an effort to add a heightened sense of realism, players will be required to limp over to their nearby medic when their health runs low. The same rule applies to ammunition; once that stash of bullets is gone, you’ll have to call upon your fellow squadmates for help.
Glen Schofield, co-founder of Sledgehammer, offered up some context in a recent interview with Polygon, noting that players will “have to worry about every bullet” when plowing through the single-player campaign.
You’re not the superhero. You can’t just stand there taking seven bullets, ducking, shooting again. It’s refreshing for us to deal with recruits who aren’t Tier One warriors, to show that vulnerability. They’re naïve. It’s been a really cool challenge creating this different kind of gameplay.
MORE FROM THE WEB
Though it’ll take some getting used to, the decision to remove auto-regenerating health is in keeping with the gritty, “boots on the ground” style that Sledgehammer is aiming for. “No mission too difficult; no sacrifice too great,” as the breathless reveal trailer so aptly put, and following the resounding success of Battlefield 1 and its decision to haul ass back to The Great War, it’ll be fascinating to see how the industry takes to WWII. By stark contrast, Activision deemed last year’s middling Infinite Warfare to be the right game at the wrong time.
In a separate interview with GamesRadar, fellow Co-Founder Michael Condrey touched base on how squadmates come into play in the WWII story mode.
Part of being this squad and working together was about helping each other out in a very different way than in previous games. This is [you] relying on your squad, and so that was a mechanic where you can rely on your squad members to help you, and in that case – when you’re low on ammo – your squad can share ammo… Certain members of your squad have certain attributes that can help you, and if you are in proximity to one of your squad members, and you need their help you can… it’s an active ability.
When asked to elaborate on the campaign itself, Condrey stressed that the single-player component of Call of Duty: WWII is a global affair, much like the conflict on which it is based.
The Allied force was a global force, the German force – the Axis force – was more than just the Nazis. It was Germans as well as other nations, and so it was important for us to not… this isn’t an American war, this isn’t a story of an American squad – this is a global cast and so you’ll see some really powerful performances on both sides of the war. You’ll see some powerful performances by the men and women who sacrificed, families that were involved.
Call of Duty: WWII will touch down on PS4, Xbox One and PC on November 3rd. Both the multiplayer component and the fan-favorite Zombies Mode will be showcased at a later date – the former is expected to light up E3 2017 in June – and if you somehow missed Wednesday’s grand reveal, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.