A huge Call of Duty staple is about to be taken out of the franchise's latest release. A Q&A post with Sledgehammer Games on the PlayStation Blog reveals that Call of Duty: WWII's multiplayer mode won't use the create-a-class system. Instead, Call of Duty's create-a-class will be replaced with a new "Divisions" format.
In the post, Sledgehammer Games co-founders Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey talk a bit about what fans can expect from WWII. For one, there's going to be iconic battle locations as maps, authentic weapons from the war, and a team-based "assault & defend" mode called War Mode. But most of all, Condrey introduced the Divisions system.
Players choose from five different World War II divisions, each with their own "specific basic combat training, division training, and weapon skills." That training is then used on the battlefield to give competitive advantages in combat. So it seems like WWII is moving towards a class-based structure, mirroring Battlefield's system instead of allowing players to create their own weapon and equipment structure from the ground-up.
An Activision blog post reveals some more information about Divisions. There will be five different classes to choose from in total, all listed with some general explanations. Here's their descriptions straight from Activision:
Airborne: First to the fight, where you move fast and stay quiet
Mountain: Focusing on precise and deadly sharpshooting
Infantry: Be the tip of the spear
Armored: Bringing the heaviest firepower
Expeditionary Force: Packing heat with incendiary shells
Pretty intense. What else is coming? Well, it's hard to say for certain until E3 2017, which Sledgehammer teases will have more multiplayer information. But the Divisions system has the opportunity to change up how gamers play #CallofDuty. And those changes may be for the best.
Where Do Female Soldiers Come In With Divisions?
What else we already know about WWII's multiplayer features? Sledgehammer gave us a few more clues that are worth mentioning.
For one, Condrey confirmed that there will be various nations inside multiplayer. And he once again confirmed that WWII will have female soldiers.
"World War II was a global conflict that affected nearly everyone on the planet," he wrote. "Men and women of all nationalities contributed to the effort in many important ways. Our game showcases a broad and diverse ensemble cast in all modes of play."
While singleplayer will be largely focused on the Western Front in Europe, it's likely that other nationalities will play a role in multiplayer. That could include Soviet troops, where a significant number of women served in the armed forces.
And since Schofield hints that the single-player campaign will have players take on the role of a "female French resistance fighter named Rousseau," so one Division may include female resistance and partisan fighter, too. Sledgehammer Games hopes to make Call of Duty: WWII's multiplayer both inclusive and realistic, and the Division system may be the developer's opportunity to accomplish both. Alternatively, WWII might just have custom gender options from the start.
'WWII' Will Mostly Go Old School
Lastly, we know Sledgehammer wants WWII to feel like the original, old school Call of Duty games, while bringing in gameplay improvements for 2017. So, expect a step away from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, with a focus more on classic fighting.
"In developing the combat for Call of Duty: WWII, the key word was 'grounded,'" Condrey explained. "We looked at it like a return to the roots of the series, a chance to revisit what made Call of Duty a cultural milestone – an old-school battle that takes advantage of new gaming technology."
That grounded gameplay is pretty promising. It means WWII will most likely focus on gunplay, tactics, and hardcore skill. Don't expect overpowered weapons; to hit that "grounded" experience, it's very likely WWII's weapons will be highly balanced to make sure each weapon serves as a proper counter and is properly countered.
Beyond that, it's hard to say where WWII is headed when it comes to multiplayer. All we know for certain is single-player's story, its themes, and its aesthetic style. And it remains yet to be seen where multiplayer will take influence from single-player, and where it will depart.
Either way, we know for certain WWII will be a very different take on Call of Duty. One that might bring back classic fans who loved the original games.
Interested in picking up WWII? Share your thoughts in the comments below.