Report: Next Year’s Call of Duty Game Has Been Delayed

Posted on February 23, 2022 by Laurent Giret in Games, PC gaming, Xbox with 6 Comments

Activision Blizzard has reportedly delayed the upcoming Call of Duty game that was planned for 2023, which is being developed by Treyarch. According to a report from Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier, the disappointing performance of the 2021 episode, the WW2-themed Call of Duty: Vanguard, has apparently led Activision execs to reconsider Call of Duty’s annualized franchise status.

“The company is pushing off the release after a recent entry in the series failed to meet expectations, leading some executives to believe that they’re introducing new versions too rapidly, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to discuss the deliberations,” wrote Schreier. “The decision was not related to Activision’s agreement to sell itself to Microsoft Corp. for $69 billion, the people said.”

Call of Duty skipping 2023 will be a first for the franchise that saw a new major entry being released every year since 2005. In an emailed statement to Bloomberg, an Activision spokesperson explained that new Call of Duty content is still in the pipeline for 2022 and the following years. “We have an exciting slate of premium and free-to-play Call of Duty experiences for this year, next year and beyond. We look forward to sharing more details when the time is right,” the spokesperson said.

Earlier this month, Activision revealed that its 2022 roadmap for Call of Duty includes a sequel to Infinity Ward’s Modern Warfare 2019 episode, as well as a new Warzone experience. Both projects are being developed by Infinity Ward and will use a brand new game engine.

To compensate for next year’s Call of Duty game being delayed, Bloomberg is reporting that this year’s Modern Warfare sequel “will receive a steady stream of additional content.” Additionally, the report mentioned a “new, free-to-play online title” coming next year with support from Treyarch, the same studio working on the now-delayed 2023 Call of Duty game.

Call of Duty remains one of the best-selling video game franchises every year, though keeping the blockbuster series on an annual release schedule may no longer be the right strategy for Activision Blizzard. Warzone, Call of Duty’s free-to-play battle royale mode is slowly but surely becoming the flagship Call of Duty experience, and it’s also bringing a lot of money to the company.

Activision Blizzard continues to operate independently as Microsoft’s acquisition of the company, which is expected to be completed by June 2023, is currently undergoing regulatory scrutiny. Anyway, it’s unlikely that Microsoft is going to interfere with Activision’s roadmap for Call of Duty: The annual franchise probably deserves a break, which would also allow the three different Activision studios working on the franchise to start exploring other things.

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Comments (6)

6 responses to “Report: Next Year’s Call of Duty Game Has Been Delayed”

  1. pauldain

    Good. Get it right.

  2. darkgrayknight

    This has been one of the not-so-great ideas of the whole franchise -- a new one every year. Gamers can't even keep up with the new versions. In my gaming group of friends, it is hard to get everyone on the same version of CoD so we can play together. Most of us finally got Cold War, only one bought Vanguard (because he really likes the WWII games). Most of us skipped two versions between Modern Warfare 2 and Cold War, usually different versions. Hopefully they slow down the CoD machine and make better versions over longer periods of time. And maybe new and different games.

  3. juan

    Somehow a company that releases half assed versions of their flagship OS buying a company that releases half assed versions of their flagship game seems like a natural to me....

  4. scovious

    It's amazing the positive change that can occur with videogame developers when their parent company isn't answering to shareholders demanding yearly profit. With Microsoft slated to buy Activision Blizzard, they no longer need to pump out games every year. Given the staleness of Call of Duty, this is great news for the developer, the fans and the game itself.

  5. sykeward

    Somehow we got into this weird annual release trap for everything: Operating systems, major applications and services, games, etc. I don't know if it's a side-effect of the financialization-of-everything or an overwhelming desire for that earnings jolt on an annual basis or what, but it's being driven from the top. What is it going to take before it sinks in that this is completely unsustainable? I can't remember a time where software has been this low-quality across the board.

  6. Daekar

    I haven't played Call of Duty since the first one, but this seems like a positive step to me. Why on God's green Earth would you release a whole new game every flipping year? Put the resources into content and release one every 3 years or something. It's not like they're meaningfully different. I question the need for different titles for different historical contexts... why shouldn't the same game have campaigns and pvp content for WWII, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, the War on Terror, and future SciFi stuff? Don't waste the effort on the back end, make the content.