Activision revealed a first glimpse into the battle royale mode for the upcoming Call of Duty: Mobile game today. It’s being custom-built for mobile, and it features Call of Duty’s signature gameplay, with a lot of first-person shooter action. The battle royale mode features a big map with locations from throughout the Call of Duty universe.
This mode will be standalone from other Battle Royale experiences in Call of Duty. So, those familar Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s Blackout mode may find some familiarity, but ultimately this experience is unique to Call of Duty: Mobile, said David Hodgson, editorial manager at Activision, in a post.
Preregistration is now open. The first limited-scale closed beta test began recently in India, and a regional beta test will kick off soon in Australia, with more territories coming online in the coming months. The game is still in early development.
The mode will feature 100 players in a match, with options for single, two-person, or four-person teams. It will have six initial classes, with varying abilities and skill levels.
The mode features similar rules to Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s Blackout map. You drop in from above, find weapons and gear, survive on the ground, and eliminate everyone else to win (like most battle royale games). Reviving teammates introduces a dog tag retrieval, with friends dropping in from a cargo plane once they are healed.
The game can be played in either a third or first-person perspective, which you decide on before the match begins. The map has settings from a previous Call of Duty titles, including Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, Call of Duty: Black Ops, and Call of Duty: Black Ops II.
Loading into the game
Prior to each match, you can pick from a variety of Loadout elements, such as the choosing of your Class, camos, and skins. You will meet in a deployment zone lobby or be able to make some adjustments as you load into the game.
Before the match, you choose your class, which means choosing an ability and class skill. You parachute in with other players in a wingsuit and then you pull the ripcord and land via parachute.
Then you search for items, move, hide, and kill other rivals. You can revive team members as needed.
You can access the Backpack (providing access to health, armor, and other equipment) as well as your class skill. Furthermore, you’re taught the more ubiquitous maneuvers, such as crouching and going prone, jumping and mantling over objects, and marking a position on the Battle Royale map.
You can choose from these types of classes:
- Defender: With the ability to place a deformable Transform Shield, this class also is Reinforced, raising resistance to all damage except bullets.
- Mechanic: Able to call an EMP Drone to create electro-magnetic interference on hostile forces, this class also features the Engineer ability, granting augmented sight to vehicles, hostile traps, and other equipment.
- Scout: Using the Sensor Dart that can view hostile positions in the immediate area of the radar map, this class also benefits from the Tracker ability, allowing you to see fresh footprints of hostiles.
- Clown: A master of distraction and friend of the undead, this class has a Toy Bomb to detonate, summoning zombies that only attack hostiles near to them; due in part to the Clown having the Anti-Zombie ability, which reduces the zombies’ aggression distance.
- Medic: This class can place a Medical Station that continuously heals the Medic and associated allies in the immediate vicinity. In addition, the Master Healer ability allows a Medic to heal more quickly, and reduces the time it takes to revive teammates.
- Ninja: Lastly, this clandestine class has a Grapple Gun that fires a hook, allowing you to propel yourself up and onto target buildings or across the landscape at speed. Movement is quiet too, due to this class having the Dead Silence ability.
Before you drop, you receive instructions on the revival of teammates: If a friend is taken out, they leave a dog tag behind. Move to and pick up this dog tag, and the teammate can be revived, which you can do with the revive button. If you’re not interrupted during the revival, the teammate can rejoin the fray. This doesn’t happen immediately; they appear on a plane and drop back onto the battlefield.
Once you’ve completed the debriefing, you’re able to pick the perspective of the camera: Choose either First-Person Perspective (FPP) or Third-Person Perspective (TPP). As you’d expect, FPP view shows your weapon, but not your character, and is the viewpoint you’re used to from Call of Duty games. However, TPP shows your entire character, with the camera behind you a few feet away; similar to the viewpoint when you’re driving a vehicle in Blackout.
Naturally, as players can have a TPP have a slight advantage (they can peer around corners without having to step out of cover), games will be matched to the camera type you choose (so there aren’t current plans to have TPP and FPP together in the same game).
On the ground
The game auto-gathers the best equipment for you, but you’re still able to grab and use the items you prefer easily. Doors open when you step to them, and you can smash through windows and mantle using the jump button, climb ladders, and (if you have it) utilize the Grapple Hook, as you’d expect.
The game will drop intermittent supply crates dropped from above, as well as beacons marking the location of Class Upgrade items, augmenting your particular set of skills, with some only becoming accessible once the instructions on the cache are completed. This usually involves the clearing of the immediate area of zombies. Expect areas with high-value equipment to be swarming with foes en route to claim these advantages too, meaning forethought and planning is needed to ensure you’re not overrun by enemies, all intent on gathering these advantages for themselves.
- ATV: A two-person quad-bike with speed but little protection.
- Light Helicopter: With room for three including the pilot, allowing you to rain down fire from above.
- SUV: An armored troop carrier with room for four, offering more ponderous mobility, but the extra protection compared to the ATV.
- Tactical Raft: Take to the waters (including an ocean and rivers) in this fast boat, but watch for snipers.
As the game progresses, the circle collapses, forcing you to a smaller and smaller area of the map on a collision course with the enemy. As time and territory whittles down, it becomes increasingly important to know the terrain, and how to best utilize it in the remaining moments of a match.
Navigating the map
The map itself offers a large variety of topography to fight through, including all-new hills, mesas, settlements, rivers, and bridges, as well as a host of familiar locations from previous Call of Duty titles dotted throughout the environment. Though this isn’t the complete list of locations, expect the map to include the following settings:
- Countdown: The hangars and missile silos; elements from the map that appeared in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
- Crash: The war-torn settlement with a downed helicopter in the middle, from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
- Diner: The infamous eatery from Call of Duty: Black Ops II.
- Estate: The hilltop house and grounds, inspired by the map in from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.
- Farm: The foreboding rural nightmare from Zombies Survival mode, from Call of Duty: Black Ops II.
- Firing Range: The military practice facility, versions of which were seen throughout the from Call of Duty: Black Ops franchise.
- Killhouse: The small, symmetrical warehouse of mayhem from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
- Launch: The cosmodrome and launch pad from Call of Duty: Black Ops.
- Overgrown: A large, rural farm and fields from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
- Nuketown: The iconic suburbs with a subterranean secret, as seen in all the Call of Duty: Black Ops releases.
- Pipeline: The grimy and overgrown railyard from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
- Seaside: The coastal multiplayer map originally from Call of Duty 4: Black Ops 4.
- Shipment: The crammed cargo docks from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
- Standoff: The border town map from Call of Duty: Black Ops II.
Activision will announce other locations in the future.