5 challenges CoD 2021 must overcome with return to WW2 era

CoD 2021Activision / Sledgehammer Games

The Call of Duty 2021 rumor mill continues to dig up new information on the eagerly anticipated title, but it seems that WWII is currently in the ironsights. 

While there have been numerous rumors surrounding which setting CoD 2021 will tackle next, the latest leak has come from a prominent source. Renowned leaker Victor_Z dropped a subtle hint that Sledgehammer will be returning to the series’ roots and that another WWII game is on the menu. 

Call of Duty is certainly no stranger to the bloody and brutal battlefields of WWII. After all, the ever-popular FPS series was originally focused on depicting the horrors of this historical conflict. Since then, Call of Duty has branched out into more modernized settings. However, it now looks as though we’ll be hearing the pings of M1 Garands and the shriek of MG 42 fire. 

Of course, the current leaks could prove to be wrong, but we’ve taken a look at what CoD 2021 needs to get right when returning to the well-trodden streets of WWII.

5. No more incendiary shotguns

Incendiary shotgunsActivision / Drift0r
Incendiary shotguns were incredibly broken in the last CoD WWII game.

The Incendiary Rounds shotgun is one of the most broken things to come out of a WWII CoD game since World at War’s MP40. Any shotgun loaded with these fiery bullets could make short work of any player, and it wasn’t long before whole lobbies flocked to this loadout. 

Not only could this shotgun attachment wipe out multiple enemies in a single shot, but it also had decent range. When you combined this with the close-quarter nature of CoD WWII’s maps, you had an incredibly lethal cocktail that any player of any skill level could use. 

It’s been four years since CoD WWII hit our screens and we still have nightmares about this horrifically overpowered attachment to this day.

4. Integrating WWII guns with Warzone

Call of Duty WWII gunsActivision / Sledgehammer Games
Integrating WWII guns into Warzone could prove difficult.

Given the current Warzone integration trend, it is safe to assume that the next Call of Duty weapon pool will be added to the battle royale mode. After all, Black Ops Cold War proved that weapons could be lifted from one CoD game and directly ported over to Warzone. However, this process has been far from smooth. 

Since Cold War’s release, both Raven and Treyarch have had to make numerous adjustments to the game’s guns, changing everything from weapon damage to buffing attachments. It’s certainly a tricky task and one that can have a detrimental impact on the meta.  

Iconic guns like the Thompson, PPSh-41, Springfield, MP40, and Mosin–Nagant would all need to be balanced in a way that they can compete with Warzone’s current arsenal.

3. Historical inaccuracies

PPSHActivision / Sledgehammer Games
Minor inconsistencies can drag even the best CoD titles down.

Perhaps the biggest complaint from Sledgehammer’s previous venture into WWII was the game’s disregard of historical accuracy. While we’re not expecting a complete masterclass on how the world handled the 1940s German invasion, we at least expect each faction to be using the correct weapons. 

Storming Normandy Beach and fighting your way through German-controlled trenches certainly made for an adrenaline-fueled experience, but one that was slightly dampened by the fact that German soldiers were armed with PPSH submachine guns. It’s a relatively minor flaw, but it is one that breaks immersion.

The latest Black Ops campaign also fell foul to its inaccurate depiction of the Cold War history, but we’re hoping Sledgehammer gets things right in its latest outing.

2. Distinct map designs

Gustav Cannon Activision / Sledgehammer Games
Gustav Cannon is one of the worst maps in Call of Duty history.

Call of Duty WWII wasn’t exactly known for its map design. In fact, the game had some of the most boring and uninventive maps in Call of Duty history. Not only did they lack any semblance of character, they were also completely devoid of any color. 

We understand that the European side of the conflict was largely fought across muddy fields and bombed-out towns, but if you can have colorful camos and skins, then why not add a dash to the multiplayer maps?

For example, Gustav Cannon was simply a gigantic field that featured a few beige buildings and a massive railway gun in the center. Meanwhile, Carentan’s grey streets and numerous sightlines made it incredibly dull. Not only did its overall size make it difficult to find anyone, but the numerous sightlines made players scared to move. 

WWII was a global conflict that spanned across jungles, deserts, and icy tundras. It’s not like this conflict is lacking in exciting locales, so we hope CoD 2021 will do more than just visit the same old crumbling cities and baron fields.

1. Make things feel fresh

Call of Duty WWIIActivision / Sledgehammer Games
The depiction of lesser-known battles would make another WWII game more appealing.

To say that WWII is overplayed in FPS games would be a huge understatement. The bloody conflict has spawned countless representations across both books, TV, film, and games for many years. While Call of Duty has been focussed on more recent wars, it has always had an affinity towards the grizzly battles of WWII. So far, the series has ventured into these historical firefights a whopping five times, with Sledgehammer’s 2017 title being the latest. 

As result, players have become incredibly familiar with the likes of the iconic Thompson machine gun, Kar98k, M1 Garand, and Lee Enfield rifle. All of these guns may be iconic, but they have seen their fair share of action. While we’d be lying if we didn’t say we loved the satisfying ping of the Garand or the bolt action shots of the Kar98k, it would be great to see a number of lesser-known guns.

CoD WWIIActivision / Sledgehammer Games
There’s no end of battles CoD 2021 could look at.

There’s also the fact that Call of Duty games never seem to stray too far off the beaten track. While storming the beaches of Normandy and tearing our way through the bombed-out streets of Stalingrad made for an awesome spectacle the first time around, these scenarios have now been done a million times before. 

Given WWII’s huge scale, there is a nearly endless amount of weaponry, locations, and battles that could be depicted for the first time in a CoD game. By tackling the unrepresented sides of the global conflict, players would feel less burnt out by yet another WWII title. 

So, there you have it, five challenges CoD 2021 has with returning to WWII. Make sure you check out our CoD 2021 hub for all the latest release date, news, updates, and leaks.