At the end of April, the rumors were coming in fast and hot. Not to let them catch up, Infinity Ward and Activision released the announcement trailer for the new Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare.
Now, in an interview with IGN, Infinity Ward design director Jacob Minkoff has confirmed that players will be able to seamlessly jump between battles on the ground, and dogfights in the air and near-Earth orbit, using a fighter called the Jackal. Transitions between the ground levels and space will be entirely seamless, a la No Man’s Sky, and Infinity Ward is aiming to have the player as invested in their fighter as their player character.
“It’s kind of the Top Gun fantasy,” Minkoff said, “… it’s your fighter that you get to upgrade and customize.”
Minkoff made sure to specify that the Jackal was not a means of shoehorning in vehicle sections, but rather that the dogfighting missions “are seamlessly woven into the fiction of the character and the mechanics of the game.” He also emphasized that, while Jackal gameplay is an exciting addition to the flow of the campaign, the core of Call of Duty is “about having a gun in your hand, ducking behind cover, and shooting guys,” and that is still the primary mode of play.
Infinity Ward’s communications director, Eric Monacelli, echoed this sentiment in a post on the PlayStation Blog, saying “we aren’t developing a science fiction or space battle game — Infinite Warfare is first and foremost a Call of Duty game.”
Infinite Warfare will also be the latest Call of Duty title to support a non-linear story structure, with optional objectives launched from the UNSA Retribution, a player-controlled carrier. In another part of the interview, Jacob Minkoff told IGN, “we are telling a linear story, but along the way you can choose to attack targets of opportunity, [rewarding] you with various items and progression and loot elements that will help you to accomplish the next main mission.”
Finally, during a livestream on May 2, Activision announced the first story details, including the identity of the antagonists, the Settlement Defense Force. Describing them as a “brutal, fascist group,” who intend to take control of the Solar System’s resources, they herald a return to the large-scale conflict of the series’ WWII entries, rather than fighting terrorists and PMCs.
With a promise to refocus on the dramatic single-player story of a Call of Duty game, Infinite Warfare is shaping up to be an exciting new first-person shooter campaign, and not just an expensive pack-in with the Modern Warfare remaster.
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare is scheduled to release on November 4 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC, with no last-gen versions planned. For more on the future of the Call of Duty series, keep both eyes locked to OnlySP.