Report: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Won't Ship With a Traditional Single-Player Mode [Update: Battle Royale Rumored]

Black Ops 4 will instead focus on multiplayer, zombies, and co-op.

News by Matt Kim, .

Update 4/17: In another rumor, this time from Call of Duty website CharlieIntel, a tipster is now reporting that Raven Software is working on a battle royale mode for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4. This mode will make up for the lack of single-player content in Black Ops 4 as reported below.

According to a new report Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 won't have a traditional single-player story mode. Sources with knowledge about the project say that instead Black Ops 4 will focus mainly on multiplayer and zombie modes.

The report comes by way of Polygon which spoke with anonymous sources close to the project. If true, this would be the first main Call of Duty game to release without a campaign story mode. In a statement, Activision said, "We don't comment on rumor and speculation. We look forward to revealing Black Ops 4 on May 17."

If true, Black Ops 4 will be rather unconventional.

The sources say that as Black Ops 4's release date approached, development on the single-player campaign couldn't be completed in time. One source close to developer Treyarch said that instead development focused on expanding the game's multiplayer and zombie mode, with an emphasis on co-op modes to potentially take the place for traditional single-player modes.

If true, this will be a risky strategy. Other first-person shooters that didn't ship with single-player modes like the first Titanfall and Star Wars Battlefront were noted as lacking by critics and players for that very reason.

Activision and Treyarch announced Black Ops 4 back in March after basketball player James Harden was seen wearing a Black Ops 4 hat. Treyarch will be in the developer's chair again as per Activision's rotating list of studios working the Call of Duty franchise.

The most recent Call of Duty game was Call of Duty: WW2 which took the series back to its historical roots. The Black Ops series by contrast starts around the Cold War and extends into the future. The tagline for Black Ops 4 is "forget what you know," so I guess we'll have to forget what we know about the Black Ops series so far.

We will learn more about Black Ops 4 during the reveal event on May 17, and presumably at E3 2018. Black Ops 4 is scheduled for release on October 12, 2018 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC. For more, check out our Everything We Know About Black Ops 4 guide for the latest news and info.

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Comments 8

  • Avatar for WiIIyTheAntelope #1 WiIIyTheAntelope 6 months ago
    So they're doing the Modern Warfare 2 remaster without multiplayer. And they're doing Black Ops 4 without single player. That sounds suspiciously like they're trying to get people to buy 2 separate games just to get the amount of content they got in one.

    And oh boy. Battle Royale. What the world needs is 1,000 more of those.
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  • Avatar for docexe #2 docexe 6 months ago
    @WiIIyTheAntelope What a weird state of affairs. But then again, it's just more proof that the "annualization" model of game franchises doesn't work anymore.

    For their own good, I hope they bundle both games in the same package.
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  • Avatar for Arvis-Jaggamar #3 Arvis-Jaggamar 6 months ago
    @docexe Annualization definitely needs to stop. It's not healthy for any franchise. But as long as it's profitable it will keep happening. Even niche franchises like Atelier have taken a nosedive in quality because of annualization. Meanwhile, AssCree takes some time off and makes Origins, which many say is the best AssCree in forever. Let's do this with COD and sports games, too, please.
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  • Avatar for Wellman2nd #4 Wellman2nd 6 months ago
    Why even bother calling it Black Ops 4 then?

    The desperation for its past glory, the CoD franchise now wears like a trench coat is getting uncomfortable.
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  • Avatar for NiceGuyNeon #5 NiceGuyNeon 6 months ago
    Two years from now this game will only be remembered for its gross misuse of roman numerals.
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  • Avatar for odaiba-memorial #6 odaiba-memorial 6 months ago
    @NiceGuyNeon I dunno, a lot of traditional clocks have been known to use "IIII" instead of IV, so it's not completely unheard of.

    If they continue the trend into Black Ops 5, however, that would be a different story.
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  • Avatar for docexe #7 docexe 6 months ago
    @Arvis-Jaggamar I agree, although it seems difficult/unlikely to happen with sports games. Then again, I suppose they could take just patch the new rosters in the current iteration and take a “sabbatical”.
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  • Avatar for harryseth72 #8 harryseth72 4 months ago
    Apple is getting ready for the launch of iOS 12 beta for developers. If you are interested in downloading/installing iOS 12 beta on iPhone or iPad device. It is now time to prepare for the rollout of iOS 12 update for your devices.
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