Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War’s Zombies Mode Has a Ton of PotentialJoshua GoodpastorGame Rant – Feed


With Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War officially announced, fans are now looking towards Treyarch to see what will come of Zombies. Although the developers have confirmed a Zombies based mode, there is not much information available, but Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War has a chance to craft an authentic zombie experience.

Black Ops and Black Ops 2 set the foundations for the Zombies franchise. As other games tried to reproduce the game there have been several successes and failures scattered throughout the Call of Duty franchise. With Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War on the horizon, the developers have a unique opportunity to place Zombies back in historical context and drive it back to its origins.

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The Call of Duty Zombies game mode has a long history. With timelines that interconnect with sub-realities, it can be a complete headache to navigate for new players. No matter the timeline, map, mission, or Easter Egg, there is a core experience that is found in each of the Zombie game modes in all the games. This core is the Origin of the zombie experience, and Call of Duty: Cold War now has a unique opportunity to bring players back into that original state.


The historical potential of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is large. With the distrust between the U.S. and Soviet Russia fueling innovation, the entire Zombies experience has a chance to evolve its Origin narrative. Originally, the Zombies mode was based on the idea of Nazi zombies with the release of Nacht der Untoten. This map debuted in the midst of World at War which was set in 1942.

The year 1942, and World at War, was in the middle of World War II putting the focus of Zombies on a Nazi origin. The release of Nact der Untoten is the first time fans were given the option in Call of Duty to take down the undead, and it was a massive success. Track forward into the second map released, Verruckt, and players now have a date set for the Zombie timeline. Dempsey, John, and Paxton all work together in 1945 to survive as long as they can.

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The following maps follow the adventures of several Zombies icons and Group 935’s various research projects. Most of the Zombies encounters in the original Black Ops games are set in the 1940s, which opens up the potential that Call of Duty: Cold War has.

By being set in the 1960s, Call of Duty: Cold War can push the zombie narrative forward expanding above the original Zombies narrative. Call of Duty: WWII tried to reinvent the series, but it did not have the same level of momentum that Cold War possesses. Expanding the technology and moving Group 935 forward several years could result in a different timeline and help reimagine the entire Zombies narrative, while redirecting the Origin of Zombies creates an opportunity to reach a new conclusion.

To further this thought, the existence of the map FIVE shows the persistence of the zombie apocalypse. This map serves a direct focal point that the Zombies campaign can revolve around remixing the core ideas with the themes of FIVE. Although fans would love the return of the original Zombies cast, there are several political figures that could fit the bill and make an appearance in a brand new take on the Zombies franchise.


One of the key things that Treyarch and Raven Software need to ensure is that the core of the Zombie experience remains untouched. There are several factors that fans consider vital to the overall experience that previous reimaginings have disturbed, and if these factors are left embraced rather then replaced, then the Cold War Zombies game mode will have one step forward towards a satisfied Zombies audience.

One of the core features that fans have grown to love is the unbelievable nature of the zombies themselves. From the magical Perk-O-Colas to the Pack-A-Punch machine, there is a level of magic and fanciful design built into the game. This fun and almost outrageous nature is one of the most beloved features in Call of Duty Zombies, which is why fans respond poorly when the game designers take the mode too seriously. This design element is as subtle as the Spork in Alcatraz to as blatant as the Amusement park in Black Ops 3.

Zombies started as a wave-survival game mode, but since then, it has evolved into a puzzle-filled experience with secrets hidden around every corner. One of the features that make Zombies so loved by fans is the difficulty in each challenge. While some can be completed easily, the challenges worth finishing require timing, work, and coordination. Call of Duty: WWII used the Easter Egg system to progress a story throughout the game mode. Although this was an interesting use of the puzzle-solving mechanics, a large portion of fans seemed to prefer the Easter Eggs in Black Ops 4. In both instances, the story was progressed, but in Black Ops 4 the progression had a slightly different curve.

It is balancing the narrative and the gunplay of Zombies that created this unique curve. While completing the objectives to progress makes sense, Black Ops 4 did not forget the wave survival core of the game itself. Fans do not expect the match to end and fully intend on spending hours running around and killing the undead. Optional endings are vital to the zombie progression and Cold War would prosper if they stayed true to the optional nature of the story itself. At some point, fans just want to blast apart some Nazi Zombies.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War has a ton of Zombie potential. Fans await answers as to what the developer plan to do with the game mode with all eyes on the perk system, maps, and characters. One thing is for sure, as long as Zombies maintains to its core audience expectations, then there is nothing they could do wrong that fans have not seen before.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War launches November 13 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One, with PS5 and Xbox Series X versions also in development.

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