On December 15th, an eSports DLC will drop for Call of Duty Ghosts!!! The content includes public playlists for Search and Destroy, Hardpoint, an MLG playlist, and Codcaster mode! I was disappointed at the fact that Ghosts did not seem to endorse the competitive side. After BO2 did so much for competitive COD, increasing its reach and popularity tremendously, the developers of Ghosts seemed to take all the positive achievements of BO2 and completely disregard them.
The competitive and MLG game modes in BO2 were Search and Destroy, Hardpoint, and Capture the Flag. I have no clue what the developers of Ghosts were thinking when they decided to remove not just one, but ALL three of the competitive game modes. My thought was that they were trying to promote their new game modes like Search and Rescue and Blitz, as they are alterations of SnD and CTF respectively. But man was that a bad call. The backlash was incredible, the competitive community was completely up in arms, and I know many players that canceled their per-order because of this. The decision to get rid of SnD, HP, and CTF single handedly cost Activision millions of dollars in sales.
Obviously they realized the error of their ways and came to their senses. I thank the competitive COD community for being so vocal with their outrage, as I can guarantee that this eSports DLC would not have happened if we did not speak up. I do have to give IW credit for actually listening to the community and taking action. Call of Duty: Ghosts now has a chance live up to its potential, as it did make some improvements on previous COD installations.
Solving the issues with the competitive side of Ghosts, the next issue that needs urgent attention is the Call of Duty App. The premise in and of itself was a terrible idea, under which I believe there exists an unspoken ulterior motive. Beachhead Studios (developers of the COD App and COD Elite) has confirmed that they have no future plans to make a browser version, or a console version. That is some bullshit.
One can only download the app on Apple devices (ipod, ipad, iphone), select Android devices, and on the Windows phone. Not all of the 200 million people that play Call of Duty own one of these devices, and those that do not have been completely segregated. For the past two years, we've become accustomed to using the COD Elite service that can be accessed on any internet browser. There is an application version of Elite that can be accessed on consoles, as well as apple and android devices.
During the MW3 life cycle, in order to participate in COD Elite Lone Wolf competitions, or to have your score counted in Clan Operations, you had to purchase an Elite Premium subscription for $50. When BO2 came out, Elite no longer offered that premium service and was free to use for everyone. Their reasoning behind this change was, and I'm paraphrasing, "We wanted to give all COD players the ability to use our services, and no longer segregate those who did not purchase a subscription. That way, the entire community can be united through COD Elite!" Bullshit. This announcement was made days before BO2 came out. Elite had a ton of issues in it's first year. It was months before the site was running properly, and I'm sure Beachhead had to devote a ton of time to fixing and maintaining the service. That being said, I along with many other Premium members really enjoyed the service. On top of having access to in-depth statistical analyses of all weapons, equipment, and scorestreaks, the ability to review each match you play, the ability check out the stats and recent games of everyone else (this was available to non-premium members as well), we were able to compete in the Lone Wolf competitions. A few of these competitions, three of them I believe, were called 100k tournaments, as the total value of the prizes was $100,000! Dozens of other competitions had prizes of value as well.
The best function of Elite, in my opinion, was the Clan aspect. For the first time in COD we were able to create or join a clan, level up the clan, and compete as a clan in operations and challenges. At that time, the competitive side of COD was limited to individual or team competition, which was capped at 6 players. Clan Operations allowed Clans of up to 100 members to compete as a whole, cohesive unit. Clans were a big deal in MW3, as being a member of a high level clan granted access to the gold clan tag, exclusive backgrounds, player cards, emblems, and even up to 24 hours of in-game double xp. I knew that as soon as Elite turned free, there would be no more prizes of value in competitions, and the quality of the service would diminish drastically. And so it did. Clans were no longer as important in BO2, as there was no reward for leveling up, and lone wolf competitions disappeared completely. Elite made millions, if not hundreds of millions of dollars. There had to be a good reason why they decided to make it free for everyone. My thought was that they had such issues maintaining the service and fixing the numerous bugs and glitches, they decided to give up and not charge for it. I believe they were planning on having premium service again for BO2, or they wouldn't have waiting until November to announce that it was free.
Beachhead claims they didn't want to segregate those who didn't buy Elite premium last year, and this year, they segregate A TON of COD players by dumping Elite and using the app. It would be simple to release a console version, or integrate a website so players can check stats and manage a clan, the framework is already there! But no, we've got to use the app. There has got to be a valid explanation for this ridiculous decision, and when dealing with the companies involved in developing, marketing, and producing Call of Duty, it usually comes down to money. So, I speculate that Activision or Infinity Ward have some kind of deal with either Apple, Andriod, or some other company that will benefit from this app.
I have to use the tiny screen on my Ipod to access the app, which really sucks. As a clan leader, I've spent a lot of time using the Elite website/service in the past two years, not only to check my stats and analyze my gameplay, but to check out other players' stats and gameplay. Elite was an essential tool for both finding potential clan members, and evaluating players that apply to join the clan. We've also had many of our most valuable clan members apply to join this clan because they found us on the Elite Clan Leaderboards. I am contemplating going out and buying a tablet solely because of the fact that it sucks using the app on an Ipod. It is my belief, that the primary reason Elite is now an "app only" service, is because it will prompt, or basically force, a large number of COD players to go out and purchase a device with which they can access the app. Please Infinity Ward, Beachhead, Activion, correct me if I'm wrong.
This app really sucks, not just because of the above mentioned reasons, but because it doesn't work. It is slow as hell to load every screen, and suddenly crashes every few minutes. I can't even create a clan emblem because it crashes and erases it before I can finish. The biggest problem I have is with the Clan functionality. In the past two days I've received over 50 applications to join the clan. I've also had to add many members that weren't on the BO2 roster or have changed their gamertag. That being said, the clan roster is now full, maxed out at 100 members. I have around 20 players on the roster that need to be removed because they are inactive, but the app will not allow me to do so. When I navigate to the clan roster on the app, I am given the option to change a player's position, or kick them from the roster. When I click the button to kick the person from the roster, I am asked "are you sure you want to kick *player's name* from the clan?" but *players name* is not the person I'm trying to kick, its a randomly selected player on the roster! I accidentally kicked out an active member because of this. Seeing as there is no other way for me to manage my clan and I cannot add any new members, this is a huge issue that needs to be fixed urgently.
Issues with the Call of Duty App:
-I cannot properly choose a player to kick them from the clan
-The overall clan statistics, and the statistics of every player on the roster, are not updating and stuck at 0.00
-There is no way to view your recent games or the games of another player
-There are no weapon/equipment/killstreak statistics
-There is no list of challenges
-I cannot use the "Rally Up" function as it says I have no friends
-etc etc. There are many more smaller issues that I don't have time to list.
Please Beachhead Studios, get these issues fixed as soon as possible. I understand the app just came out, but you released a completely unfinished and non-functional product.
I'm just glad that eSports is returning to COD. Seeing this picture was the best news I've got in awhile, competitive Call of Duty is alive and well once again.
Check us out at www.TeamVVG.com