Activision hint at possible change to Call of Duty League’s annual cycle

Jacob Hale
Activision hints at changes to annual CDL CoD cycle Black Ops Cold War and Modern warfare

Activision have hinted at possible changes coming to the annual Call of Duty League cycle in the future.

As with the regular Call of Duty cycle, the CoD esports scene switches to the latest CoD game each year. So, while the 2020 season saw pro players on Modern Warfare, they’re now on Black Ops Cold War.

For a long time, some competitive fans have been calling for more longevity in the games being played, akin to more popular esport titles like League of Legends or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.

A longer life cycle allows games to develop and players to truly master what they’re playing. Even now in the aforementioned games, we see new strategies play out and evolve the game to the next level.

OpTic Chicago Scump CDL
Call of Duty esports has switched games every year to follow the CoD cycle, but this could be about to change.

Obviously, for esport purists, an annual life cycle is perceived to be detrimental to a title’s competitive scene — and it looks like these conversations might be occurring at Activision, too, in regards to the CDL.

In an interview with Inverse, Activision Blizzard CRO Brandon Snow was asked about the annual cycle, and gave a response that will definitely raise some eyebrows.

“If you’re asking if we’ll play Cold War for four years, possibly; If it made sense for us, the player base supported it, and viewership supported it,” he said. “We’ve been shifting our esports based on the latest title to keep it as relevant as possible. But could there be a world where we stick with a title for multiple years? We’re not sold on any specific strategy there.”

CDL Paris Legion vs Minnesota RØKKR on LAN
The Call of Duty League might be changing its format significantly if these hints amount to much.

While this isn’t confirmation of anything, it definitely suggests that there’s a possibility that the annual cycle is dropped entirely for the CDL.

Whether it happens this year or sometime in the future is impossible to tell; as Snow himself says, they’re not sold on any specific strategy yet. But it’s very telling that the idea wasn’t shut down completely.

Elsewhere in the interview, Snow discussed the possibility of Fortnite-like live events coming to Warzone, and how the battle royale title can be integrated into the esports scene.

Needless to say, there could be some huge changes coming to the future of Call of Duty, but we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.