Call of Duty: WWII could be a way for a new generation of young people to learn the history of the Second World War. Activision and developer Sledgehammer Games reinforced that point with a documentary released today with the game’s historian, Marty Morgan, talking about the war’s importance in modern history.
Previous generations learned about the sacrifices that made during the war through talking to veterans (either those in their families or elsewhere), school, or films like Saving Private Ryan, Schindler’s List, The Longest Day. Millennials have films like this summer’s Dunkirk, but a video game might be much better way to get across the message about the gravity of the war. The Brotherhood of Heroes documentary will help gamers draw the connection between the game and what really happened in the war.
Morgan assisted the teams at Sledgehammer Games as part of a mission to get the history right in the game and balance that with a story that would hold the interest of gamers. He led studio heads Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey and other developers on tours of the European battlefields of the war, from Omaha Beach at Normandy to the Hürtgen Forest in Germany to the Ardennes in Luxembourg.
The game depicts the personal stories of the men and women who experienced the war and are no longer here to tell the story themselves to the new generation, said Condrey, in our past interviews. Both Condrey and Morgan were careful to note that women participated in the war as well, and the game draws attention to a little-publicized part, where the French Resistance had female leaders that helped with the retaking of Paris and France.
Call of Duty: WWII debuts on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Windows on November 3. In my opinion, if the game raises awareness about World War II and history, and makes people think about the sacrifices that people have made to give us our freedom, that will be a great achievement. It means that video games aren’t just toys. They can be vehicles to deliver a message more effectively than any other kind of medium. This documentary is just the beginning of a way to reinforce that message.