Call of Duty 6 planned for 2009

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GGmania reported that Activision today revealed that it is planning to release more of franchise titles Guitar Hero and Call of Duty in 2009. Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick said that the publisher will "leapfrog" studios, which we'll assume to mean that, since Treyarch is hard at work on Call of Duty: World At War, that Call of Duty 4 developer Infinity Ward will be taking the reins on this one. Kotaku mentions a rumor that Infinity Ward is working on a science-fiction shooter, and speculate whether CoD 6 will be fought with ray guns, though it was also recently reported the developer is cultivating an entirely new intellectual property. In related news, CVG has a nice lengthy write-up of Call of Duty: World at War. The team had a chance to sit down with a demo of World at War:

Treyarch's Noah commented that players in the dev's offices had begun playing World At War in the same manner as real US troops would move through a battlefield; advancing slowly, scouring the tree tops for enemies and firing into the long grass to spook hidden enemies. Backing up this gameplay is COD's latest weapon - the flamethrower. This enables you to burn trees, grass and almost anything on the battlefield. It was demoed to me in the game's new Co-op mode, with Noah and Treyarch's creative director Richard Farrelly teaming up to showcase the fiery death-dealer.  It looked a little cheap. Every step was met with a vicious burst from the scorching flamethrower, which instantly set everyone and anything on fire. Grass would burn, spread and torch trees; flaming enemies would run screaming into gun turrets and cause havoc. It looked all too easy and Noah admits that getting this balance right, especially for online, will be vital.

COD4 sung online. It changed everything. So handily using the COD4 engine means everything you and I loved about playing online will be retained for World At War, including Perks, team modes and old-school set-ups. Noah was being coy about the Perks system for World At War, after all these are WWII weapons, but upgrades such as powerful shots, mid-mag reloads on the M1 Grand and new grenade classes (Molotov cocktails) will be on offer.

Interestingly, Treyarch are pushing the idea of a vehicle-based online mode. There will be specific maps and Perks created just for skirmishes involving tanks, jeeps and armoured cars. This is something of a gamble, especially considering the game's limited development time. It's debatable whether online vehicle combat will add anything to the series over being a niche side event.  The second campaign is set at the end of the European war as Russian forces pushed into Berlin. This looks to resemble the tightly contested street skirmishes of COD4. Expect something similar to the Middle-Eastern stages of Modern Combat with a smattering of new weapons, including the return of the fire effect used in the Pacific campaign with the introduction of Molotov cocktails and combustable environments to make use of.

Call of Duty 6 planned for 2009

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