With another year comes the latest release in theCall Of Dutyjuggernaut.
Infinite Warfare, however, hopes to shake things up. Infinity Ward’s studio art director Brian Horton speaks with the BRAG about moving the series to the final frontier: space.
Keeping up a yearly release schedule is difficult for many reasons, but Infinity Ward hopes individuality is the solution. “I was just so excited about this idea of creating a game that didn’t feel like science fiction, but science fact,” explains Horton. “And how do we make it feel like a document of this good versus evil war where two human factions are fighting over this natural resource in space? That to me was like, ‘OK, that’s my mission and that’s what I’m going to try to achieve.’
Considering his experience with visuals, I wonder if Horton worries about games feeling too real. “I think [in] every age there are these walls that people put up where people say, ‘Oh, this is too far, we can’t go this far,’” he says. “I’m sure there are going to be some things as we get more and more real where people are going to start to lose their perception of reality. I think we’re pretty far away from that, but I’m really excited about the idea of VR [virtual reality]. The first time you’ve had a true VR experience you’re like, ‘That’s what this is about.’ It’s when you start to pick things up and feel like you’re manipulating the world – that’s what gets me excited about our medium. We keep finding innovations.”
Infinite Warfare will once again combine a single player campaign, multiplayer suite and zombies mode into the one package, but distinguishing between those three facets is paramount.
“The tech works universally for all of those modes, but we try to imagine the personality of each of them,” says Horton. “Zombies has this ’80s, campy, fun take on the franchise, and it allowed us to be a little more fun and have colours with a little more pop. Then for multiplayer we needed to be clearer, so where we went dark and atmospheric on the single player game, we had to be a lot crisper and clear so that players could get visibility.”
Despite the heavy emphasis the series places on multiplayer, a lot of love has still been given to the single player campaign. “We spent a lot of time working our tech to make the whole single player campaign stream so that you’d never have a loading screen,” Horton says. “We really want you to feel immersed in the game. Obviously that’s one of the big advancements beyond all the graphics features, so you can play the single player experience all the way through and just feel like you’re in this world the whole time.”
Actor Kit Harington (AKA Game Of Thrones’ Jon Snow) will also be making his video game debut. “We had our villain and we were having difficulties finding the right person to cast for him,” says Horton. “Then this opportunity came up for Kit Harington and we were like, ‘But he’s a hero.’ Then we thought, ‘Wait a second, that’s perfect! He always plays the hero, why don’t we go against that archetype?’ And he was like, ‘Yes, I get to play a villain.’ So he was really excited about the opportunity to do something against what most people see him as, and I think it’s a wonderful match, because it’s not what you expect, yet it works so well.”
Call Of Duty: Infinite Warfare is out Friday November 4 on XBO, PS4 and PC.