Details Emerge From Canceled Call of Duty

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Details Emerge From Canceled Call of Duty

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The developers of an ill-fated Call of Duty spinoff reveal a third-person action/adventure title full of squad-based combat and exploration.

Starting a flame war on the Internet is only slightly more difficult than tying a shoelace, but if you're starved for ideas, try this: Go to your favorite gaming site and start a thread asking people if they like Call of Duty. You're almost guaranteed to get a fight before the end of the first page. However, much of the vitriol directed at the series came after the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, the 2007 entry that took the series out of World War II and into the modern day. That very same year, however, the series nearly branched off in a very different direction: a squad-based, third-person shooter with adventure elements, based on the true story of an American-Canadian unit in WWII Italy. While the game quietly went MIA in 2008, the former development team has brought some details to light about the spinoff that almost was.

Jason VandenBerghe, a former EA man, led a small team of accomplished developers under the Activision banner to develop Call of Duty: Devil's Brigade. Activision had previously expressed interest in expanding the iconic military shooter into action/adventure territory, and saw VandenBerghe's team of veteran artists and designers as a logical fit for the project. "I don't know that I've been with a group of people that I felt more comfortable with than I was with that group," VandenBerghe recalls. "We had an enormous amount of trust and experience." The team aimed to keep the World War II setting and squad-based combat of Call of Duty, but leave behind the first-person viewpoint and extravagant action cues. "I don't think we had any over the top sequences a la the current Modern Warfare where you're blowing up entire submarine vessels," says VandenBerghe. Other departures from series norms included the ability to issue squad commands, a variety of acrobatic moves (appropriate for Special Forces operatives), and stealth sections for destroying bridges or offing enemies.

The inspiration for the game's story (and title) came from the real-life Devil's Brigade, a joint group of American and Canadian soldiers who fought in Italy towards the end of WWII. VandenBerghe's team took creative liberties, but still tried to stay close to the source material. ""[The Devil's Brigade's] first action [in the game] was to scale a 1,500 foot cliff at night in the rain, and flank the Germans from behind in their mountain retreat," VandenBerghe describes. "You're up on ropes. And there's lightning. You look down, and the entire brigade - a thousand men, they pulled a thousand men up that cliff." The true story is not too far off.

Devil's Brigade ended up as one of the casualties of Activision's merger with Vivendi/Blizzard, but VandenBerghe does not appear to harbor much ill will. "It was no one entity or one person's fault. There was no drama." Still, Call of Duty fans and detractors and alike can only wonder what might have happened to the series if Devil's Brigade had been as tenacious as the squad for which it was named.

Source: Vox Games

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well I hope they bring this game in some way? maybe Sledgehammer games can created that action/adventure COD game

As much as i dislike COD this.....well this actually sounds pretty intresting. Activision please explore this route again, it would be nice to change things up once in a while

Marshall Honorof:
Details Emerge From Canceled Call of Duty

The developers of an ill-fated Call of Duty spinoff reveal a third-person action/adventure title full of squad-based combat and exploration.

Well there you go: no mention of the Multi-player.

ELCTea:
As much as i dislike COD this.....

...Isn't COD. This is SOCOM 4 (the REAL one).

But... It wouldn't be CoD in any way, shape or form? It's like saying it's CoD because it includes guns. That's the only thing that sounds like CoD according to that description.

Also, no multiplayer would be death for a game marketed as CoD.

I really do wish some devs would explore a similar concept, though, it certainly sounds interesting.

Damn... I was actually kinda interested in that one!

...woulda been better then BlOps 2...

I see why people are saying "that doesn't sound like CoD", but just bear this in mind;

That may not sound like CoD now, but back then the title was in the process of evolving.

This game was being developed at about the time the first Modern Warfare was released, which was receiving similar "that's not CoD" comments concerning its setting. CoD4 was already a case of throwing the bath water out and doing something different with the license. At this time Activision had quite the potential the expand the brand beyond its identi-kit FPS model. The possibilities of having CoD games beyond the Infinity Ward/Treyarch cut-n-paste set-up does sound pretty good.

And yes, there's no mention of multiplayer here, but that doesn't mean that there wouldn't have been multiplayer in the final product.

Activision, take note; people are interested.


somethings sounds rather off about that .........

So instead of something even to a minimal amount diffirent than that annoying rut we are in in the game industry, we're just going to get another copy pasted COD?

THIS TIME I'M KEEPING MY MONEY... FOR REAL.
Seriously, they killed all of the characters I liked-Killed the franchise.

I would have bought this game just because there would have been Canadians in it

Why did you stop it? I would have loved that game....

I believe this is a fine example of the type of attitude some publishers have.

CoD game that isn't like the last CoD game = instantly killed because it's not a sure thing.

I'd definitively buy that, instead of the COD4 clones.

Zen Toombs:
Why did you stop it? I would have loved that game....

Same here.

Sounds a little like Brothers in Arms, I think I would have liked it.

That was certainly one thing I've been really wanting out of the CoD franchise, a Canadian protagonist.

Orange12345:
I would have bought this game just because there would have been Canadians in it

Damn straight, wanna clean up the series? Put some Canadians in the fray. :D

Wouldn't this have just been Call of Brothers: Duties in Arms?

Also despite their claims about not having been over the top with the action I am still skeptical: "I don't think we had any over the top sequences a la the current Modern Warfare where you're blowing up entire submarine vessels, just climbing up cliff faces.....and blowing up entire U-Boats......and bridges......and winning the war by yourself."

Make a WW2 COD from the Axis point of view damnit!

DVS BSTrD:

Marshall Honorof:
Details Emerge From Canceled Call of Duty

The developers of an ill-fated Call of Duty spinoff reveal a third-person action/adventure title full of squad-based combat and exploration.

Well there you go: no mention of the Multi-player.

ELCTea:
As much as i dislike COD this.....

...Isn't COD. This is SOCOM 4 (the REAL one).

heh was just thinking the same thing. i wouldve paid upfront with double the cash for the REAL socom 4.

bleh..wasted potential.

It sounds more like Hidden and Dangerous. Man, I loved those games when I was younger, even if I sucked at them.

That sounds pretty awesome, if only that had come out as well as modern warfare.
Too bad it got cancelled, on the bright side at least I have another option for the next time a "Awesome games that were cancelled" thread pops up.

Daystar Clarion:
I believe this is a fine example of the type of attitude some publishers have.

CoD game that isn't like the last CoD game = instantly killed because it's not a sure thing.

I blame the stockholder system for that. They basically run the place and I doubt most of them care about the actual product in any way, shape or form. And yet they're the ones who in the end need to be pleased, and that really hurts a creative industry like the videogame business.

It's why I welcome that whole Kickstarter thing; games for gamers by gamers.

Eh, I can't say I'd be interested in such a thing, considering I barely like the CoD series anymore. Still, nice to see an attempt, at the very least, to expand their... horizons?

AWW!!! That sounds FUN!!

I don't like the CoD campaign, because they just keep trying to top the last one, and that means it gets dumber and dumber, and less and less exciting. They're just boring, and, to be honest, the graphics even make me bored. I just haven't managed to think, "oh, this looks cool" since CoD 2: Big Red One. This sounds really cool, actually. Sounds like it would have gone back to the style of Big Red One.

Corporal Yakob:
Make a WW2 COD from the Axis point of view damnit!

That would be ridiculously insensitive.
And I don't mean the idea, I'd love to play as the Wehrmacht in a WW2 game, I wrote a massive post about it somewhere, but the way that CoD handles things... Yeah. Insensitive.

Can you imagine this with Waffen SS or something?

Jesus wept.

EternalFacepalm:
But... It wouldn't be CoD in any way, shape or form? It's like saying it's CoD because it includes guns. That's the only thing that sounds like CoD according to that description.

Also, no multiplayer would be death for a game marketed as CoD.

I really do wish some devs would explore a similar concept, though, it certainly sounds interesting.

Actually, the CoD branding may get more people to play it. Remember that when CoD4 was announced, people though the same thing. "Oh, it's not CoD, it's not in world war 2" and so on, but now it's better known than CoD's 1-3.

TheDharmaFox:
That was certainly one thing I've been really wanting out of the CoD franchise, a Canadian protagonist.

Orange12345:
I would have bought this game just because there would have been Canadians in it

Damn straight, wanna clean up the series? Put some Canadians in the fray. :D

CoD 3 had a few levels as the Canadians, though. Not that the game was all that good, but at least it had a campaign someone put work into.

..So, they were making Brothers in Arms?

redisforever:

Actually, the CoD branding may get more people to play it. Remember that when CoD4 was announced, people though the same thing. "Oh, it's not CoD, it's not in world war 2" and so on, but now it's better known than CoD's 1-3.

The thing is, it carried over similar gameplay that could easily be transferred from the old games - the same doesn't go for this one. From what has been said, it sounds like an entirely different game entirely.

Cowabungaa:

Daystar Clarion:
I believe this is a fine example of the type of attitude some publishers have.

CoD game that isn't like the last CoD game = instantly killed because it's not a sure thing.

I blame the stockholder system for that. They basically run the place and I doubt most of them care about the actual product in any way, shape or form. And yet they're the ones who in the end need to be pleased, and that really hurts a creative industry like the videogame business.

It's why I welcome that whole Kickstarter thing; games for gamers by gamers.

kickstarters not just for gamess.....
they made a floating full sized pool!
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/694835844/pool-a-floating-pool-in-the-river-for-everyone

great website in general.

I dont know what point i was making. Il just be going now.

AmrasCalmacil:

Corporal Yakob:
Make a WW2 COD from the Axis point of view damnit!

That would be ridiculously insensitive.
And I don't mean the idea, I'd love to play as the Wehrmacht in a WW2 game, I wrote a massive post about it somewhere, but the way that CoD handles things... Yeah. Insensitive.

Can you imagine this with Waffen SS or something?

Jesus wept.

Yeah thats what I was thinking as well, game companies don't have the guts and maturity for something like a Axis game with moral ambiguity-if COD tried I could see it going in two ways: first and most unrealistic (in that this would never be made) would be "No Russian" but with British POWs in place of Russian civilians, the second would be something as pathetic as MW3's "shocking" moment like surrendering to a American division after shooting your cackling hook handed commander before he eat Jewish babies.

However!

I still maintain that World at War was on the right track by showing brutality on both sides of the conflict and having a very dark and gritty theme overall: World at War 2 with a German campaign beginning in airy France and then taking a turn for the absolute worst on the Eastern Front, climaxing in Stalingrad and a Japanese campaign along similar lines would be superb.

This sounds like what Brothers in arms: Furious 4 should have been.

Activsion please for the love of god can't you stop swimming in your pile of money for the smell of innovation?

Always loved the WW2 games, the MW ones are boring, think thats more to do with the history. So hopefully this game will be made.

Kmadden2004:
I see why people are saying "that doesn't sound like CoD", but just bear this in mind;

That may not sound like CoD now, but back then the title was in the process of evolving.

This game was being developed at about the time the first Modern Warfare was released, which was receiving similar "that's not CoD" comments concerning its setting. CoD4 was already a case of throwing the bath water out and doing something different with the license.

Hardly, it changed the setting. That's nowhere near this level of change, where this really wouldn't be CoD.

Just because people are saying the same thing doesn't make it particularly comparable.

I'd still easily say CoD4 was the best one, being the one I actually played start to finish, because I just never got into World War 2 games after trying to beat the Brothers in Arms Coop with my brother.
However, I'd play it, just because I can't really recall many games where I get to play a fellow Canadian. Also, my history teacher never mentioned there were americans in the devil's brigade, wierd.

Call of Duty: Devil's Brigade. Huh, I would have actually considered buying that. Oh well, EA with you being well... you I know we can count on you to let us down.

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