Call of Duty Black Ops 4: release date, news and trailers

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Call of Duty is one of those franchises that you can count on. Like FIFA, it doesn’t miss its yearly slot on the release calendar and, to be frank, we like that kind of stability in our gaming lives. 

Activision has now confirmed that October 12 2018 will see the release Call of Duty Black Ops 4 and that Treyach is the studio working on it. Last year's Call of Duty WW2 was largely well-received and there was an uptick in the sales figures, so the decision to keep going with the series has surprised no one.

What is surprising, though, is the new mode that Black Ops IIII will introduce called Blackout. A take on the ultra-popular battle royale games like PUBG and Fortnite, Blackout will introduce larger battlefields with more players and only a few winners. We'll get more details in September when the private beta launches, but until then gamers will feast on two separate multiplayer beta sessions that run in August.

Compared to this time last year, we now know a ton more details around Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. You can read all about what's coming below.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? The 2018 installment of the Call of Duty franchise 
  • When can I play it? October 12 2018
  • What can I play it on? It’s usually Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC, but if rumors are correct you’ll also it on Nintendo Switch too

Call of Duty Black Ops 4 release date

Activision has now confirmed that the game will be released on PS4, Xbox One and PC on October 12 2018.

Call of Duty Black Ops 4 trailers

The latest trailer to be released is the Black Ops 4 multiplayer beta trailer. The beta kicks off first for PS4 fans on August 3, before opening up to Xbox and PC fans the week after. Both tests will run the course of a weekend and are only available to those who've pre-ordered the game from approved retailers. 

Check out the new gameplay footage from the trailer below:

E3 2018 brought us a look at the multiplayer gameplay of Black Ops 4 via PlayStation. Watch it for yourself below:

The May community reveal for Call of Duty Black Ops 4 brought us a handful of new trailer for the game's range of modes. 

There were a trio of trailers released for Call of Duty Black Ops 4's Zombies mode. The mode will, on launch, feature three new areas for players to battle the undead. IX will place players in a Roman Coliseum and focus on melee combat; Voyage of Despair will take place on the doomed Titanic; while the last mode, Blood of the Dead, is a throwback to a previous mode called Mob of the Dead.   

Watch the trailer for IX below, and click through to the above links to see the other trailers:

Below you can see a trailer for the brand new battle royale mode called Blackout. Featuring Call of Duty's biggest ever map, this mode will mix classic Call of Duty gamplay and characters with a whole new way to play. 

Finally, everyone loves a good cinematic trailer to raise the hype levels. You can see the Call of Duty Black Ops 4 cinematic trailer below:

Call of Duty Black Ops 4 news and rumors

Now that Activision has confirmed there will be a Call of Duty game in 2018 and it's a new title in the Black Ops series we're just avidly awaiting more information.

Single player mode might not be completely out of the question

Though Call of Duty Black Ops 4 won't ship with a single-player campaign, that doesn't mean the game will never have one. In a recent interview with Variety 

Treyarch studio head Dan Bunting said that the game would "grow and adapt" and that the team would "listen to the community" when it comes to making changes. When asked directly about the chance of a single-player campaign being added post-release he said "anything is possible." It's far from a confirmation but those still looking for a single-player experience in Call of Duty Black Ops 4 may not be entirely out of luck.   

There will be a battle royale mode called Blackout

It was long-rumored and now it’s been confirmed. Following the success of games like Fortnite and PUBG, Call of Duty will have a Battle Royale mode. Called Blackout, this game mode will feature the biggest Call of Duty map ever with different sections being inspired by areas we’ve seen in previous games. 

If you’re in any way familiar with Battle Royales you’ll know what to expect here – players are dropped into the map and must fight it out, solo or in squads, to be the last person standing. Using a range of vehicles, players will have the chance to fight on land and in the sea and the air. 

No single-player

That's right, as rumored Call of Duty Black Ops 4 will drop the single-player campaign. And it's the first title in the franchise to do so. 

Players who enjoy playing solo won’t be forced into endless multiplayer matches, though. Treyarch have said that solo missions will be integrated into the game’s multiplayer. These missions will apparently give players some deeper insight into the specialists that they’ll be able to choose from in the main multiplayer modes, offering a connection to the game world as well as a means of practising before tackling the faster pace and higher pressure of online multiplayer.  

Zombies!

Zombies mode is going to be bigger than ever.  

When the game launches, there will be three modes to choose from with four new characters and some brand new enemies. Each co-op mode has its very own map: ‘IX’, or Nine, will take players to a gladiatorial arena where it seems there will be a great deal of focus on melee combat; the next area, called Voyage of Despair, will take place on the Titanic; while Blood of the Dead is more of a throwback to fan favorite Mob of the Dead. 

It's also been hinted to GamesRadar that Zombies mode will grow and expand as time goes on with updates and events. It also seems that there’ll be difficulty modes and the ability to play alone by filling out the team with AI-controlled teammates. 

A change to health regeneration

Health regeneration has changed and could prove to be more challenging. Though players will now have 150 health points rather than 100, their health will no longer automatically regenerate when they catch a break from being shot at. Now they’ll have to manually regenerate their health using health packs and there’ll be a time delay after you’ve used one so you can’t use another straight away. This is intended to encourage more tactical play and it’s likely that it’ll change the pace of multiplayer gameplay. 

The Pick 10 system from Black Ops III will be returning, but Treyarch has teased that it will be a little different this time around. Players will see a new category called Gear added, which will complement the new health regeneration system. In the gear system, players will be able to choose from a range of items which will include body armor for increased protection from shots and packs for faster health regeneration. 

You can't get it on Steam

Call of Duty Black Ops 4 won't be on Steam. Instead the PC version will be on Blizzard's Battle.net. 

Treyarch is really trying with the PC version of the game and it's planning  4K and HDR support, an uncapped framerate, ultra-wide screen support and a range of customization options. 

Dropping Steam is a bold choice but we’re pretty sure the fact that the game will now have dedicated servers will make for a better online experience.  

A Nintendo Switch release?

It feels like every second day brings a brand new Call of Duty Black Ops 4 rumor. The latest is from Game Intel, who are reporting that a "trusted source" has said Black Ops 4 will be coming to the Nintendo Switch.

Before you get too excited, this source has also said that it won't be a full version of the game. It will instead be a battle royale release, with no Zombies mode or true online multiplayer. 

As you'd expect, Activision hasn't commented on these rumors so we suggest taking them with a pinch of salt for now. 

That said, all recent rumors for the game are tying in well together to create a rather interesting picture for the future of Call of Duty. If the game really doesn't have a single-player campaign and will instead sport a battle royale mode, a Switch release for this mode alone wouldn't be such a terrible idea. It's certainly not been holding Fortnite back. If Call of Duty managed to get the first battle royale release on Nintendo Switch it could be unstoppable.

Vonderhaar tweets

Treyarch designer and director David Vonderhaar has been teasing Call of Duty Black Ops 4 on Twitter in the strangest way recently. Vonderhaar has changed his name to Redacted and removed all of his tweets from his profile  with the exception of one which reads: 

It's obscure, but it's a possible hint as to the route Black Ops 4 will be taking with its plot. 

Call of Duty Black Ops 4 is confirmed

On March 8, Activision confirmed that Call of Duty's 2018 outing would indeed be Call of Duty Black Ops 4 and that we'll see the game released on October 12. Before this, though, there's going to be a community reveal event held on May 17 where we'll get the chance to see more about the game.

A Gamestop leak

A further sign that Call of Duty 2018 will indeed be Black Ops 4 came from a leaked Gamestop listing in March 2018. CharlieIntel  reported that an insider sent images of an internal database of listings for Call of Duty Black Ops 4.  

The listings are for various pieces of merchandise including T-shirts and lanyards which are expected to arrive in May 2018. This suggests that we'll see the official announcement of the game before this and given Activision announced Call of Duty WW2 in April last year, that doesn't seem entirely unlikely. It's not certain, of course, whether these rumors are accurate and Activision is yet to comment. We'll update with further information as it becomes available

Activision confirms Call of Duty 2018 and Treyarch

In an earnings call in February 2018, Activision confirmed to the surprise of no one that there would be a Call of Duty game coming in 2018. It also added that Treyarch would be the studio working on the game. Activision didn't go so far as to say that this would be another Black Ops installment, but given Treyarch is the studio behind all of the previous Black Ops titles and there are already rumors swirling that 2018 will see the release of Black Ops 4 this seems likely. 

Tweets and the Eurogamer report

The prevailing rumor at the moment is that the next call of duty game will be Call of Duty Black Ops 4. The initial rumor was started by a self-styled industry insider known as Marcus Sellars who took to Twitter to announce some information on the game.

According to Sellars, Call of Duty Black Ops 4 will be set in the modern day, taking a more ‘boots on the ground’ approach in line with the recent Call of Duty WW2 release. The game would, he states, be released on PC, Xbox One and PS4 as you’d expect but he added that a Nintendo Switch port is also in the works. 

This tweet was then followed up by a report from Eurogamer, which stated that multiple sources have confirmed Call of Duty Black Ops 4 is indeed in the works at Treyarch studios, with an aim for a late 2018 release. 

Given Treyarch has been the studio behind the last three Black Ops titles, it’s safe to say the game will be in safe hands.  

Eurogamer’s report also stated that the game would be set in the modern day due to the negativity around Infinite Warfare’s futuristic setting, however it didn’t corroborate Sellars’ claim that there would be a Switch port. 

Returning to the Black Ops arm of the franchise doesn’t seem like a far-fetched move for Activision – the last time we saw a Black Ops title was 2015 with Black Ops 3. Overall, Black Ops 3 was a well-received title from fans and critics alike, with large amounts of praise being directed towards the game’s multiplayer mode in particular.

What we'd like to see from Call of Duty Black Ops 4

A Switch version

At the moment, it kind of feels like Switch port rumors float around every single game before the developers have to come out and say ‘yes’ or ‘no’. Given Activision hasn’t done this yet for Call of Duty 2018, we feel like we can say we’d really quite like to see a Switch port.

There hasn’t been a Call of Duty game on a Nintendo console since Call of Duty: Ghosts hit the Wii U in 2013. That’s a big gap and though the Switch is nowhere near as powerful as the latest consoles, we’re sure it could handle a new Call of Duty game in some form or another. 

When Activision confirmed that there would indeed be a Black Ops 4 released on Xbox One, PS4 and PC, it made no mention of a Nintendo Switch version and declined to comment on such a release. We're taking that to mean that there's still a possibility.

A good campaign mode

Though Black Ops 3 had a fantastic multiplayer mode, its main campaign left something to be desired. We’d love to see Black Ops 4 remedy that with an engaging story and an interesting cast of characters.

We know it can be done – Black Ops 2 had a perfectly enjoyable campaign with really interesting multiple endings. We don’t need to see Black Ops 4 go for a carbon copy approach, but we wouldn’t object to an emotionally engaging single-play story mode.

Zombies

Zombies mode is pretty much a staple of the Call of Duty franchise at this point and naturally we’d love to see it return. It’s a mode that’s only really improved over the years and Black Ops 3 totally nailed it but we’d like Black Ops 4 to do even better.

A little innovation certainly doesn’t hurt and we definitely wouldn’t object to some new features in a formula that’s tried, tested and beginning to tire.