I got the opportunity to take a pretty in-depth look at Call of Duty Elite, Activision’s new Call of Duty-centric social platform and stat tracking service for their ridiculously popular, ubiquitous warfare shooter. As you know, I don’t care much for first person shooters – and I care even less for social platforms, but even I left a little impressed.
Call of Duty Elite may come across as a way for Activision to monetise the biggest multiplayer game around around to make even more money, but speaking to the guys behind the platform it’s obviously a labour of love. Call of Duty is a phenomenon, currently enjoying 20 million unique players per month, and Elite is a way to engage those people, the Call of Duty fans, through more than just the game alone. Yes, despite what anybody at Activision tells you, it is just a very glorified stat-tracking service, but it’s one packed to the rafters with features that COD players will actually care about; especially those who play competitively or want to get better at the game.
The platform will be available on PC, and through mobile devices using Android or iOS and will give players access to the kind of stats that matter. Compatible with COD titles from Black Ops onwards, Elite will give players stats on just about everything in the game; Their favourite maps, weapons, loadouts and beyond. It capable of showing where on each map trends of you tend to die, or kill most – shown as a coloured heat map.
You can also pull up the stats of those who kill you regularly; your nemeses. You can compare those stats across all gametypes and maps as a means of fostering a little friendly competition. It’s all rather community driven, and in that regard is quite robust. It’ll allow you to create custom leaderboards through the service consisting of just the players you choose, instead of the random assembly of gamertags and PSNid’s that make up the leaderboards we’re currently privy to. It’ll even allow you to group up with other people who have similar interests or locales. For those who play competitively, this finally gives you the ability to assemble proper gaming clans of up to 100 members and compete in inter-clan tournaments – without the headaches currently associated with trying to keep clan games organised.
It’ll also expand on the theatre mode seen in Black Ops, and will give players an easy way of uploading videos to Youtube, complete with player tagging abilities. There’s a ton more features of the service that we’re not privy to yet, but one thing is for certain; if you’re a Call of Duty fan, a serious COD player, elite will be more than worth its asking price, whatever it may be when the service goes live. Most of its features are completely free though, and premium subscription will only be required for some of the features that the really serious players will use – like clan support. Seeing as the subscription includes ALL COD DLC thrown in for free, it’s probably a no-brainer for them anyway.
Elite enters a beta phase next month, and will be fully functional by the time Modern Warfare 3 launches.
Last Updated: June 8, 2011