Yes, the rumors are true. “Call of Duty: Black Ops III,” set for release on Nov. 6, 2015, will not be including the game’s campaign for its Xbox 360 and PS3 variants. As publishers of the game anticipated, the decision to omit the campaign mode from past generation consoles was answered with hostility.
In response, Activision released a statement last week regarding the decision, clearly stating, “the ambitious scope of the one-to-four player co-op campaign design of the PS4, Xbox One and PC version could not be faithfully recreate on old generation hardware.”
I see the decision as unsurprising. No matter how emotionally torn fans may be from this move, the decision was more than likely made based on the economics of the gaming industry rather than anything else. Producing a game that will stack up to the competition in reference to its most popular aspects means letting go of certain features that might be less important to the overall success of the game, like singleplayer.
The introduction of the Xbox One and the PS4 has also created an opportunity to fully exploit new technology in ways never before seen by gaming consumers. Holding the game back in lieu of a last-gen campaign would be economically foolish.
Although it may be hard to admit, the golden age of the campaign mode is slowly becoming a thing of the past. If anything, “Black Ops III” new take on a more sophisticated one-to-four player co-op campaign might be a tradeoff worth leaving last generation consoles behind for. It would be revitalizing to see the integration of four-player campaign modes begin to sway general opinion back in the favor of game mode shared primarily between friends spending time together in person.
Overall, the advent of the PS4 and Xbox One have produced a shift in game development that precludes a game like “Black Ops III” to operate identically between new and old consoles. The change should be understood as not just a misfortune, but simple gaming evolution. As time moves on, new technology will continue to preclude the newest gaming features from older generation consoles: an unfortunate yet unavoidable consequence of the progression in the gaming industry.
Connor Grothe is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.