Activision Distances Its Name From Call of Duty: Vanguard

Who Made Call of Duty: Vanguard? The Trailer Tries Not To Tell You

Let’s play a little game, if you have the time. Below this paragraph is the reveal trailer for Call of Duty: Vanguard. Legally, Activision’s name has to be in there somewhere – and for the series’ previous trailers, Activision hasn’t been afraid to let people know who’s behind one of the biggest gaming franchise in the world. So it’s gotta be in this one too, right?

Just click play. You can even slow it down, if it’d help. Youtube’s player allows for that. See if you can find Activision’s name. It’s there, I promise.

Did you spot it? It’s in the fine print, right at the end of the trailer, below some far more prominent imagery. And it’s just the name, not the stylized logo you’re probably used to seeing. If you weren’t looking for it, if you weren’t in the know, you might not even realize Activision had a hand in Call of Duty: Vanguard at all.

You have to ask yourself: why would this be so different? Why would Call of Duty’s marketing team not want the Activision name on this game, specifically? Did something happen to… oh.

And then you remember. Activision-Blizzard is currently fighting a legal battle against the state of California, after some… misdeeds came to light. While the case is not yet formally resolved, those in more informal settings (like the social media spheres around Call of Duty fan communities) have looked into the publicly available information, and public opinion is very against Activision-Blizzard at the moment.

With this in mind, it’s easy to see where the decision game from. “Activision-Blizzard” isn’t exactly the safest name in the gaming world right now, and people might not enjoy supporting a company like that.┬áIt certainly feels like a rather slimy move on the part of the marketing team, but at least it’s better than the alternative: acting like nothing important happened.