Rumors have started bubbling about the next "Call of Duty" game, which is (somewhat obviously) looking like "Modern Warfare 3." On Monday, we were hoping for an official announcement of the game during Activision's earnings call, but we only received a few details, acknowledging that "some" type of "Call of Duty" game was coming in 2011. I figured we would have to wait until closer to E3 before seeing anything else, but it looks like we're getting a glance at some (unconfirmed) logos today.
Last night, Electric Hydra forum user, Powertree, claimed he had received some artwork for "game titles that are probably going to be announced at E3." He later posted four images, two of which were logos for the previously announced "Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon" and "Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure." More importantly, the other two images appear to be logos for "Modern Warfare 3" and a mysteriously titled "Call of Duty: Elite."
There's obviously no way of telling whether the images are legit, but they certainly look convincing. The only thing throwing me off is that the "Modern Warfare 3" logo actually has "Call of Duty" in the title. That doesn't immediately make it fake, but it seems odd after Activision's bizarre attempts to remove the "Call of Duty" moniker from "Modern Warfare 2." Powertree claimed that he received the pictures "at work," but I have no idea who he is, or where he's employed. Just a guess, but I'm assuming he would rather keep it that way.
The "Modern Warfare 3" image isn't a total surprise, of course. We knew the game was coming (most likely with a November 8 release date), but it's still cool to check out the new game's logo. What is a bit surprising is the "Call of Duty: Elite" image. This is the first time that the term "Elite" has shown up in a "Call of Duty" game's name, so it initially had me scratching my head wondering what in the world it meant. While it's entirely possible that the logo is just bogus, I'm thinking it's more likely associated with Activision's previously discussed Project Beachhead.
Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg briefly mentioned Beachhead during the earnings call Monday, stating that the company had formed a new development studio to work on an "all new connected digital universe for the Call of Duty franchise." While it's just speculation, I'm fairly confident in stating that "Call of Duty: Elite" is actually Project Beachhead. There's few details at the moment, but Hirshberg made the project out to sound like an online service.
"This platform will include a suite of services and content plan that will unite and ignite the community like never before. The platform will support in-game integration and bring online experiences and console play together for the first time," Hirshberg said.
If I had to take a guess, I would imagine "Call of Duty: Elite" to work as an online organizational platform, akin to "Halo: Waypoint." I don't think "Elite" is an entirely new game, and I don't even think it's anything close to the "Call of Duty MMO" that's been rumored for quite some time. Instead, imagine a nice little app that sits on your Xbox 360 dashboard, where you'll be able to launch into multiplayer games with friends and compare stats. The service could also streamline community events, like tournaments or other contests.
There's certain to be more information about "Modern Warfare 3" and "Call of Duty: Elite" released over the next few weeks, leading up to E3. We'll be sure to post any news on either title as it becomes available.