Alexa Answers the Call of Duty

Posted on April 19, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Cloud, Hardware, Smart Home, Xbox with 4 Comments

Alexa Answers the Call of Duty

Activision announced this week that it has released a beta set of Call of Duty skills for Amazon Alexa. Yes, that’s right: You can now interact with the hit game Call of Duty: WWII using your voice and your Echo smart speaker.

“With a simple voice command, Call of Duty provides you with critical intel, personalized instruction and essential after-action reports in real-time so you can take your game to the next level,” the announcement notes. “Want to access all of your multiplayer stats, check your progress on an active challenge, or hear what’s new in the Call of Duty world? Call of Duty has your six.”

Contrary to what I had imagined when I first heard about this skill, the Alexa integration doesn’t enable real-time voice features to the game itself. (Indeed, when you think about it, that kind of functionality—“Call in an airstrike!” or whatever—should be built right into the game, right?) Instead, it’s about getting in-game information after the fact, and between matches.

It’s also multiplayer-specific, which makes sense: The COD:WWII is dense with various power-ups, and keeping track of your progress across your in-game personas, loadouts, contracts, orders, and various other capabilities requires a lot of whack-a-moling.

To get started, enable the Call of Duty skill on your Amazon account, make sure an Echo or other Alexa-compatible speaker is near your Xbox One, and then dive into the game.

A few sample phrases can be found in Activision’s Call of Duty videos on YouTube. Some examples include:

“Alexa, how did I do in my last match?”

“Alexa, how did I do compared to my friends?”

“Alexa, ask Call of Duty what contracts am I close to completing?”

Not too compelling, really. But an interesting use of Alexa. And a new take on the notion of “Call of Duty skills,” too.

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