Call of Duty: Modern Warfare studio art director, Joel Emslie, took to Reddit yesterday to announce that Infinity Ward is not currently working on a loot box system for the upcoming shooter.
The statement reads as follows;
There continues to be misinformed and incorrect info being pushed about Modern Warfare. What I can say right now is that we are definitely NOT working on any kind of supply drop or loot box system. Also, functional stuff is unlocked through GAMEPLAY. Stay tuned, we’re planning to release info this week.
Although the absence of a loot box system is welcome news in this day and age of pervasive monetization, exemplified by Ghost Recon Breakpoint’s blatantly aggressive pay-to-win model as recently as this month, the news rings somewhat hollow in light of the post-launch events that characterized Infinity Ward and Activion’s previous Call of Duty title.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s launch was relatively free of loot box type monetization despite a hefty grind worked into the time-limited tiered progression system, with estimates that over 250 hours of play were required to unlock all 200 tiers.
As sure as the tides, a few weeks after launch, premium currency CoD points appeared in the game, and Infinity Ward/Activision introduced new micro-transactions that allowed players to purchase tiers circumventing the need to grind altogether alongside the usual slew of cosmetic items we’ve come to expect from modern AAA releases.
There was a sense among the community that Infinity Ward and Activision purposefully implemented the grind elements into the game for the sole reason of pushing players to micro-transactions to alleviate the sheer slog of progressing.
The fear is that Activision and Infinity Ward are adopting a similar strategy for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. Lure in players with the promise of ‘light’ monetization, before cranking up the micro-transaction eco-system a few weeks after launch.
Emslie saying that players can obtain ‘functional stuff’ through game play is equally unnerving. Game play could translate to hundreds of hours as we’ve seen before.
In any case, next week’s announcement should shed new light on what we can expect from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare in terms of micro-transactions.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is already on shaky ground with the Special Ops Survival Mode one-year PlayStation 4 exclusive ruffling some feathers among the player base and a raft of problems plaguing the beta. Activision and Infinity Ward would do well to advance with caution to avoid alienating even more potential players.