Today, the Call of Duty League announced that the 2021 season will be played with controllers on PC. CDL will require all pro players to compete on a PC platform with a league sanctioned controller. The league will announce which controllers will be allowed soon.
CDL will allow players to select the League-approved controller that best suits their game. This is the first time CDL will not be played on a console. 2011 Call of Duty XP, Activision’s first sponsored esports event, was played on Xbox 360. CDL transitioned to PlayStation in 2015 with Black Ops 3. Since then, all league matches have been played on PS4.
Activision has also announced that Call of Duty Challengers will switch to crossplay, meaning players on PlayStation, Xbox, and PC can compete in online Challenger events in the 2021 season. Players will be required to use controllers and mouse and keyboard peripherals will not be permitted. Meanwhile, LAN Challengers will be played on PC with competitors able to plug in their League-approved controller of choice.
Recently, the 2020 CDL season wrapped up with Dallas Empire winning the title and $1.5 million in prize money. Soon after, CDL announced that for the following competitive season teams would be reduced from five players to four players, meaning rosters around the world would be forced to release one of their players or keep them on as a substitute.
Numerous organizations dropped their entire rosters, a sign none of their players inspired much confidence for the 2021 season. Meanwhile, Seattle, London, Paris, L.A., and even Chicago all dropped at least two players. This massive overhaul has given teams the option of attracting more high-profile players who are currently free agents.
Next season, CDL will be playing the newly released Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. Last season was marred by the COVID-19 pandemic, which had teams switching from LAN to online competitions, a move that many say has influenced the decision to drop entire rosters. CDL is hoping that the game mechanics and utility of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War are improved to facilitate online play.
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