Activision Blizzard and its Treyarch studio are making fans nostalgic in a big way with the Awakening downloadable content (DLC) map pack for Call of Duty: Black Ops III.
Activision released the DLC map, the first a quartet for the best-selling Black Ops III, today as part of its plan to keep 40 million Call of Duty monthly players engaged with the newest entry in the 10 year, $10 billion-plus Call of Duty series. Black Ops III launched in November and it has been one of the best-selling Call of Duty games ever.
The new map pack has four multiplayer maps and a new Zombies co-op play experience. It debuts first with 30-day exclusive window on the PlayStation 4.
The maps include Skyjacked, which takes place on a futuristic ship high above urban Zurich. Skyjacked is a modernized version of the popular Call of Duty: Black Ops II multiplayer map Hijacked. That map took place on a luxury yacht, and it had such tight, close-quarters combat and symmetrical sniper positions that it was one of my favorites. (I figured out exactly where to position myself to get some kills as a camper, but I always lingered in that spot too long). The new Skyjacked map is designed to give players new ways to maneuver around each other — like running on walls — while still retaining some of the old flavor of Hijacked.
A second map is Splash, set in the middle of an abandoned water park. It’s a little reminiscent of Black Ops III’s Aquarium map, but it’s much more vibrant and colorful environment. And it has waterslides, a wrecked pirate ship, and a lazy river. Splash encourages an open flow of combat with opportunities for underwater gameplay.
The third map is Gauntlet, which has three distinct environments within one action-packed map. Gauntlet showcases Treyarch’s classic three-lane map structure, transporting players into battle through an urban jungle, a sub-zero artic zone, and a rainy urban cityscape.
And the final map is Rise, set in the snowy outskirts of Zurich in the middle of an ongoing construction site for a subterranean Coalescence research campus. With multiple engagement areas throughout this larger map, each section caters to different styles of gameplay.
“Treyarch’s commitment to our fans with Awakening, and all season long, is to keep delivering you the goods,” said Mark Lamia, Treyarch’s Studio Head, in a statement. “Great times lay ahead for players of Black Ops III, with both finely crafted new maps and reimagined multiplayer classics. And for Zombies fans … your commitment to us pays off all season long, starting with Der Eisendrache.”
Awakening also introduces the first chapter of Call of Duty: Black Ops III’s Zombies DLC adventure. Der Eisendrache picks up where The Giant left off. Set in a medieval Austrian castle during World War II, players embark on a four-part journey with the Origin characters Richtofen, Nikolai, Takeo and Dempsey, spanning the DLC season. Treyarch says, “The ancient site on which the castle sits was the scene of unspeakable horror where massive deposits of Element 115 have recently been discovered. Players will discover a variety of exciting plot twists and surprises as they survive waves of the undead.”
The map pack is available to Season Pass holders, who pay $50 a year for all of the DLC releases. It is also available for $15 as a stand-alone map pack.