Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is a direct sequel to the original Black Ops, and while the numbers have been long defeated, a new imminent threat seems to loom over this new Call of Duty. At the height of the Cold War in 1981, returning characters Alex Mason, Frank Woods, and Jason Hudson are back to track down the enigmatic Soviet spy Perseus.
Although no one really knows who Perseus is, they’re said to have supplied Vietcong soldiers with a nuclear weapon and continues to be a threat amid rising tensions between the United States and Soviet Russia. There is a new character within the Black Ops crew who’s the most familiar with Perseus, though: Russell Adler, played by Bruce Thomas (also Master Chief in Halo 4 through Infinite). And if I’m being honest, Adler straight up looks like Robert Redford.
Adler is said to be a clandestine operations officer for the CIA and has this stoic, hard-to-read personality, and is the type to cross lines to accomplish missions. He seems to take the Perseus threat personally, and from what we know so far, it probably has to do with something that happened during the Vietnam War, in which Adler is a veteran.
During the cutscene in which all this information is unraveled as a top-secret meeting in the Situation Room, you have then-president Ronald Reagan bust into the room–and the character model and voice work is eerily close to the real person. This Black Ops version of Reagan then sets the tone of the meeting, telling General Haig (who was the real-world Secretary of State at the time) that he already knows of Mason, Hudson, Woods, and Adler, and that it was he who approved the last extra-legal military operation the crew went on. Video game Reagan then talks about how these covert ops are necessary to protect innocent lives and the free world, and that it’s their virtuous duty. But I have a feeling there’s something more shady lingering here as it’d be disappointing to reinforce the jingoistic tone set in the scene.
It’s a bit ham-fisted in how serious the characters take themselves, but the mystery is intriguing nonetheless, considering Black Ops’ tendency to play into psychological thriller elements. Incorporating real-life figures isn’t new for Black Ops either, since the original game messed with the events of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination and involved Mason.
As for other new characters, you have Lawrence Sims (Reggie Watkins), Lazar Azoulay (Damon Dayoub), and Helen Park (Lily Cowles)–note that actor Sam Worthington is not returning to play Alex Mason. Although we don’t know much about the new characters yet, they are your allies in the campaign. So, you might be wondering who you play.
Well, you create your own character and customize their background including military history, personality traits, and gender (he/she/they pronoun options included). With some open-ended missions, player choices throughout the story, and multiple endings included, the Black Ops Cold War campaign looks to be taking Call of Duty in a somewhat new direction with player freedom.
We’ll be able to see for ourselves when the game launches on November 13 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC, and for next-gen platforms during the Holiday 2020 release window as well. For all our stories and breakdowns for Black Ops Cold War, be sure to check our coverage below.
Call of Duty News
- CoD Patch Notes: Warzone/Modern Warfare Update Out Now (August 24)
- CoD: Modern Warfare And Warzone Season 5 Games Of Summer Starts Later Today
- Call Of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Confirmed, Reveal Coming In Warzone
- Everything We Know About Call Of Duty 2020 So Far
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