Activision to Charge Extra for Next-Gen COD Console Upgrades

Posted on August 27, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Games, PlayStation, Xbox One, Xbox Series X with 7 Comments

Activision revealed this week that gamers interested in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War will need to pay extra to move between console generations, despite being asked by Xbox head Phil Spencer to make the transition available for free.

“Set in the early ‘80s at the height of the Cold War, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is the direct sequel to [the original] Call of Duty: Black Ops, the original phenomenon that started it all,” an Activision support document notes. “Set to release worldwide on November 13, 2020, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War can be pre-ordered now on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on Battle.net, with options for next-generation versions of the game supporting the forthcoming PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X that feature higher framerate, hardware-based ray-tracing, shorter load times, and more available later this year.”

As with its predecessors, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War will be available in a standard edition for $59.99. But gamers who wish to move from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5 or from Xbox One to Xbox Series X during the lifetime of the game will need to pay extra. They can do so upfront by purchasing a so-called Cross-Gen edition of the game for $69.99. Or after the fact via a $10 upgrade fee.

Additionally, Activision will offer the game in a third Ultimate Edition for $89.99 that provides cross-generational support and adds a “Land, Sea, and Air Pack” and the Battle Pass Bundle with its 20 immediately activated Tier Skips. If you don’t know what any of that means, welcome to the club.

The Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War launch trailer is now available for the curious as well.

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Comments (10)

10 responses to “Activision to Charge Extra for Next-Gen COD Console Upgrades”

  1. yoshi

    I assumed most third party devs would follow this path, especially after Remedy doing the same with Control. The big standout that won't be doing this, is CD Projekt Red with Cyberpunk 2077. In their words, "Gamers should never be forced to purchase the same game twice or pay for upgrades".

    • huddie

      In reply to yoshi: No-one is in any doubt why CDPR are so well liked compared to other studios.

      @thurrott, I don't play CoD, but those '20 immediately activated Tier Skips' sound a lot like pay to win if you ask me.


    • Paul Thurrott

      So far, I'm seeing developers not doing this, which is nice. I'm sure it will work out to be whatever mix.
    • Thretosix

      In reply to yoshi:

      It's not like some aren't double dipping with DLC and Season Pass. Microtransactions as well. Not to mention, you buy a game on one platform and then have to buy it again every time you want to play with a friend on another platform. I've been buying less and less games, have a back catalog that keeps me happy while picking up those few games I want on sale. I'd be more supportive of exclusive content if they didn't make you buy new copies of the game all the time. I also game with my friends even less because of this as well.


      It would be interesting if CD Projekt Red let you buy a license that works across all platforms and use cloud saves that allow you to go from one to another and just pick up where you left off. That is if they truly believe gamers shouldn't be forced to purchase a game twice. Microsoft started to do this with Play Anywhere titles, but has since faded away with newer games.

  2. martinusv2

    Bobby Kotick need a bigger boat?

  3. codymesh

    microsoft should try to get this game into game pass.

  4. IanYates82

    For clarity - would really like to hear this from someone in the know - if you bought the cheaper version of the game is it safe to assume it'll at least run, albeit without better assets, on the series X? That makes sense to me, and I appreciate why the companies might not want to make that known, but some clarity would be handy


    Really they should call it a 4K upgrade or something and charge $10 more for that with the initial purchase, and maybe $20 if bought later. That way if I wasn't to upgrade my xbox for 12 months I'm not forced to buy the better version now but not benefit from it for 12 months.

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