Ah it’s that time of year again; the birds are chirping, the trees are in bloom, and we’re all about to spend the rest of the year loving, hating, hyping, and debating the next Call of Duty game, Black Ops II. Some will endlessly analyze the smallest details available to the community, while others will spend their time wondering whether or not this is the year fans finally admit they’re sick of the franchise. Somehow the game already smashed the 1st day pre-order sales of its predecessor,Black Ops, by about 10 to 1. While some of this might be genuine excitement about the franchise, I think some of it has to do with the fact that this game takes place in the future, territory that is foreign to the Call of Duty series. If this is true, and this success is due largely to the new setting, then Activision will probably place the next game somewhere in the 31st century, but I digress.
According to Shack News, Black Ops II managed to sell almost 6.5 millions units within the first 24 hours, making it, according to Activision, the “Biggest entertainment launch ever,” which also according to Shack News, is the same title given to the last two Call of Duty games by Activision. Even though the PR is excessively over the top, pre-order sales did rake in over $400 million in only one day, so I guess there is some truth to it. Kotaku didn’t waste any time putting up a conclusive list of everything known about the game so far, a pretty exhaustive list for only having the trailer to work with.
As I said before this is the first game in the franchise to take place in the future, and with that comes the threat of futuristic terrorism, namely cyber terror. To this day there is no real cyber terror entity that we as a public are aware of. But there is anonymous, the hacker collective identified by the use of a Guy Fawkes mask, and that’s good enough for Activision. In the recently released trailer, that mask was used during a scene in which they are showing our countries “future enemies,” or those able and willing to take control over our network of robotic tools of war. This may have just been a tribute or a subtle nod to their effect on our culture, but apparently it got their attention because some have said this is part of a larger Anonymous smear campaign, while others joked that “If #Anonymous are the bad guys it’ll really ruin our gaming experience if we have to shoot ourselves.”
Regardless of whether or not you think Black Ops II will be a futuristic masterpiece or just another in a long line of shooters, odds are there are still months and months of previews, hype and drama to help you make a decision. If you have made the decision, you can pre-order the game here, either to ensure that you get any pre-order swag or to just be part of the all the fuss.