E3 2017: Call of Duty: World War II Preview – This Time It’s Personal

E3 2017: Call of Duty: World War II Preview

When the Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare reveal trailer dropped last year, a sea of hatred cast a shadow over the franchise. The rage was at an unprecedented level. This year the franchise has gone back to its root and the fans seem to love it. The Call of Duty: World War II reveal trailer was a hit, well mostly a hit. There is always going to be a collection of naysayers that want to see the franchise die but the fact remains the bulk of us are pleased with the direction the series has taken. While at E3 this year I had a chance to watch a 20-minute single-player demo and get my hands on some of the multiplayer action. There is no question it still looks and feels like Call of Duty but this time it all seems a little more personal.

Call of Duty: World War II is taking players back to the beaches of Normandy. It’s been 10-years since the franchise has been to World War II, so the timing feels right. Telling the story to a new generation is something Sledgehammer Games heads Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey are absolutely aiming for. They have also gone on record calling World War II the most personal game of their career and in fact, Schofield went so far to say it is the best game of his career. That is one hell of a statement from a team who pioneered one of the best action horror games of our time, Dead Space.


“The demo featured frantic gunplay, amazing sound effects of the bolt action rifle that are still ringing in my ear, realistic World War weaponry and stunning environments.”

Interestingly enough, 3-years of research went into the game where physical locations were scouted and the developers listened to veterans tell their story. Yes, it remains an action oriented and pulse-pounding experience but it is clear this Call of Duty will also attempt to tell you the story of the most brutal war in history.

The single player campaign tells the story of a squad that is fighting a rather complicated war. The level we saw during the game, called Marigny, took place in 1944 and the squad’s goal was to overtake a church. The demo featured frantic gunplay, amazing sound effects of the bolt action rifle that are still ringing in my ear, realistic World War weaponry and stunning environments. One of the new features to this Call of Duty is the health system. This time you need to get health packs from your squad mates in order to heal up. It doesn’t exactly reinvent the regenerating health system from the previous Call of Duty’s but it does add a new wrinkle to the mix. It also forces you to pay close attention to your health and not to stray too far away from your squad mates.

Call of Duty WW2

The movements, snap controls and even the overall look of the game remains all too very familiar. I would have liked to have seen more original mechanics or gameplay elements but during the demo, I did not see too much in the way of innovation. That being said, it certainly captures the essence of World War 2 and I am curious how the rest of the single player will play out. Not to mention the single player will touch on racism and sexism, so it will be interesting to see how the game handles those topics.

As for the multiplayer game I played, there was no wall running, boost jumping, exo-suits or any advanced weaponry. It was old school boots on the ground combat. We played a game of team deathmatch which took place, as you would guess, in the World War 2 era. Much like the single player demo, it all played and look the same. That said we are told new modes, weapons and obviously new maps will be available.

Call of Duty: WWII is scheduled for release on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on Nov. 3.