Treyarch has announced details of an enormous update that’s coming to Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 tomorrow, Tuesday 19th February, kicking off a brand new season of content. The update, titled Operation Grand Heist, will make big changes to Multiplayer, Blackout, and Zombies.
On the multiplayer side of things, tomorrow will see the return of Outrider as a playable Specialist, returning from Black Ops 3. Outrider will come equipped with a new piece of Special Issue Equipment known as the Hawk, which is a “pilotable drone that can be parked at strategic overwatch positions”. The Hawk will automatically tag enemies that are in its view. Her Special Issue Weapon, Sparrow, returns from Black Ops 3, bringing explosive-tipped arrows to the world of Black Ops 4. Outrider will be immediately unlocked in both Multiplayer and Blackout as soon as players complete the first tier of the new Operation in the Black Market.
Tomorrow will also see the return of a classic party game, namely One in the Chamber. In One in the Chamber, players get three lives and a pistol with a single bullet, but hitting a perfect shot (or hitting an enemy with a melee attack) will award you with 100 points and another bullet, so accuracy is of the utmost importance. There will also be three new weapons available to unlock through the Black Market: the Switchblade X9, which is a new folding SMG with fast reload and ADS times; the Rampage, a full-auto shotgun that boasts “devastating” impact at close range; and the Cha-Ching!, a melee weapon in the form of a money bag that you can deck people with.
For Black Ops Pass holders, the update will also add two more multiplayer maps. Lockup will take place in a Los Angeles police station, with the rooftop being an important tactical position in determining who has control of the map. Casino, meanwhile, takes place in a posh Monaco gambling resort, with Treyarch promising “end-to-end engagements”.
If that’s not enough, the competitive-focused players among us can finally look forward to the World League Hub launching on Thursday 21st February. With it comes the first League Play Event, which will see players battling to rank up during week long events using the CWL ruleset. It’s been a long wait for this feature and it’s far too long overdue, but at least it’s finally here.
Over to Blackout now and there are some massive changes. There’s a brand new destination being added to the southeast desert portion of the map. It’s called Ghost Town, and it’s a Western-themed area that’s made up of two new locations – Outlaw, a western-themed reimagining of the Black Ops 2 map “Standoff”, and Buried, a Zombies-inspired underground location that features caverns full of zombies. There are also a load of new buildings and entirely new locations being added throughout the Blackout map, which should freshen things up and add a bit more variety and some new strategies to the game mode. There’s good news for maniacs that have somehow already managed to reach max level (80) in Blackout, as Prestige Mode is being added into Blackout, allowing you to Prestige up to 10 times for some shiny new badges and Calling Cards.
There’s also a new game mode launching in Blackout on Friday called Hot Pursuit. Respawns will be enabled in Hot Pursuit, and players will be tasked with searching for cash and stashes across the map, with the team with the most money at the end being declared the winner. Hot Pursuit, as you could probably guess from the name, will feature three new vehicles that each feature their own unique advantages, namely the SUV, Muscle Car, and PBR. There’s also an in-game event coming to Blackout known as Hardcore Mode, but Treyarch are keeping their lips sealed on this “top secret” event. Later on in the season, the KAP 45 pistol, Switchblade X9 SMG, and Rampage auto-shotgun will also be added to Blackout, and Outrider’s Sparrow is apparently coming too, which could be a bit OP.
Black Ops Pass holders will also be getting a new Blackout character known as Cosmic Silverback, who is famous in the Black Ops universe as an enemy from the secret Dead Ops Arcade level in the original Call of Duty: Black Ops.
If you’re more of a Zombies kind of player then don’t worry, you aren’t being left out. Operation Grand Heist will introduce the “Death-Con Five” Gauntlet to the “Classified” map, introducing 30 rounds of “unique new challenges”. If you don’t have the “Classified” map (as you don’t have the Black Ops Pass) then you’ll be pleased to hear that the map will now be available to purchase as a standalone experience, meaning you don’t have to fork out the full £40 for the Black Ops Pass to play the new Gauntlet.
Aside from the new Gauntlet there’s also a new Perk coming to Zombies in the update known as Ethereal Razor, which does “devastating” melee damage against the undead. Players will also be able to equip and customize Signature Weapons in the Armory. Going forward, players will also earn an additional Tier Skip for completing Daily Callings, which means you can get up to two Tier Skips per day. Later on in this season of content, Treyarch will introduce a “Hellcatraz” Gauntlet to “Blood of the Dead”, and another community-inspired Gauntlet is also being worked on. There are also quality-of-life improvements coming to the undead-slaying mode, such as host-migration, server pause, and improved high-round stability, and a sixth new Zombies experience will be arriving later on during this season of content.
If all of that isn’t enough then there will be more cosmetic goodies to unlock throughout the new 100 Tier Contraband stream of the Black Market, such as Mastercraft weapons, reactive camos and outfits.
All of this kicks off tomorrow, Tuesday 19th February, on PS4, as part of Sony’s exclusivity deal for Black Ops 4. Again, no date for Xbox One and PC has been announced, but expect it to be a week later, as has been the case on every previous occasion.
You can read the full details on Operation Grand Heist here.