Treyarch is to take over Development of the Call of Duty Series for 2020, replacing Sledgehammer Games and Raven Software.
The Call of Duty series has been releasing games consistently between Treyarch, Infinity Ward, and Sledgehammer since 2012. Treyarch would make Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Infinity Ward would make Call of Duty: Ghosts in 2013, and Sledgehammer would make Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Things have continued with Call of Duty: Black Ops III being made by Treyarch in 2018 and Infinity Ward making a new unannounced, possibly Modern Warfare, for 2019. So in theory the next game would be made by Sledgehammer Games. Unfortunately this isn’t so as Treyarch is now taking creative leadership over this new project, turning it into Black Ops 5.
The games were planned developmental-wise to be made three years each, as all three development studios had an equal amount of time between games. Since Treyearch released Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII in 2018 and are making a game in 2020, this means that they only have two years to develop the game while picking up Sledgehammer and Raven’s work and having them while having them work on the side. This is an odd decision as there have been reports of “brutal overtime” during the development of BO4. Though it is known that they have a solid game plan compared to other projects they’ve worked with.
Previously Sledgehammer Games was going to have Call of Duty take place during the Cold War. While there was no official name for this project, Treyarch simply took over and are transforming the project making it Call of Duty: Black Ops 5 which will take place during the Cold War and is set for 2020. They will add a single-player campaign for this game due the lack of one in BO4 and that’s the extent of it.
One of the reasons for the recent takeover is the fact that Sledgehammer’s co-founders, Michael Condrey and Glen Schofield left the studio in February 2018. Also the staff between Sledgehammer and Raven have been arguing during the development of COD2020. Either way they will be supporting studios for BO5’s development.
Will Call of Duty lower in quality due to the one lost year of development? Most likely not, but I hope that that the studios will get the game done with less crunch time.