Call of Duty

Call of Duty is a first-person shooter video game franchise published by Activision. Starting out in 2003, it first focused on games set in World War II. However, over time, the series has seen games set in modern times, the midst of the Cold War, futuristic worlds, and outer space. The games were first developed by Infinity Ward, then also by Treyarch and Sledgehammer Games. Several spin-off and handheld games were made by other developers. The most recent title, ', was released on October 25, 2019.
The series originally focused on the World War II setting, with Infinity Ward developing the first and second titles in the series and Treyarch developing the third.
' introduced a new, modern setting, and proved to be the breakthrough title for the series, creating the Modern Warfare sub-series. The game's legacy also influenced the creation of a, released in 2016. Two other entries, ' and ', were made. The sub-series received a soft-reboot with ' in 2019. Infinity Ward have also developed two games outside of the Modern Warfare sub-series, ' and '. Treyarch made one last World War II-based game, ', before releasing ' and subsequently creating the Black Ops sub-series. Three other entries, ', ', and ', were made. Sledgehammer Games, who were co-developers for Modern Warfare 3, have also developed two titles, ' and '.
, the series has sold over 250 million copies. Sales of all Call of Duty games topped US$15 billion. Other products in the franchise include a line of action figures designed by Plan B Toys, a card game created by Upper Deck Company, Mega Bloks sets by Mega Brands, and a comic book miniseries published by WildStorm Productions.

Main series

TitleYearPC6th Gen7th Gen8th GenHandheldLead Developer
Call of Duty2003Windows, OS XX360, PS3N-GageInfinity Ward
Call of Duty 22005Windows, OS XX360Xbox One J2MEInfinity Ward
Call of Duty 32006PS2, XboxX360, PS3, WiiXbox One J2METreyarch
'2007Windows, OS XX360, PS3, WiiXbox One, PS4 NDS,
Infinity Ward
Raven Software
'2008WindowsPS2X360, PS3, WiiXbox One NDS, Windows Mobile,
'2009Windows, OS XX360, PS3Xbox One NDSInfinity Ward
'2010Windows, OS XX360, PS3, WiiXbox One NDS,
'2011Windows, OS XX360, PS3, WiiXbox One NDSInfinity Ward
Sledgehammer Games
'2012WindowsX360, PS3Xbox One, Wii UTreyarch
'2013WindowsX360, PS3Xbox One, PS4, Wii UInfinity Ward
'2014WindowsX360, PS3Xbox One, PS4Sledgehammer Games
'2015Windows, OS XX360, PS3Xbox One, PS4Treyarch
'2016WindowsXbox One, PS4Infinity Ward
'2017WindowsXbox One, PS4Sledgehammer Games
'2018WindowsXbox One, PS4Treyarch
2019WindowsXbox One, PS4Infinity Ward

World War II games

''Call of Duty''

Call of Duty is a first-person shooter video game based on id Tech 3, and was released on October 29, 2003. The game was developed by Infinity Ward and published by Activision. The game simulates the infantry and combined arms warfare of World War II. An expansion pack, , was developed by Gray Matter Interactive with contributions from Pi Studios and produced by Activision. The game follows American and British paratroopers and the Red Army. The Mac OS X version of the game was ported by Aspyr Media. In late 2004, the N-Gage version was developed by Nokia and published by Activision. Other versions were released for PC, including Collector's Edition, Game of the Year Edition, and the Deluxe Edition. On September 22, 2006, Call of Duty, United Offensive, and Call of Duty 2 were released together as Call of Duty: War Chest for PC. Since November 12, 2007, Call of Duty games have been available for purchase via Valve's content delivery platform Steam.

''Call of Duty 2''

Call of Duty 2 is a first-person shooter video game and the sequel to Call of Duty. It was developed by Infinity Ward and published by Activision. The game is set during World War II and is experienced through the perspectives of soldiers in the Red Army, British Army, and United States Army. It was released on October 25, 2005 for Microsoft Windows, November 15, 2005 for the Xbox 360, and June 13, 2006, for Mac OS X. Other versions were made for mobile phones, Pocket PCs, and smartphones.

''Call of Duty 3''

Call of Duty 3 is a first-person shooter and the third installment in the Call of Duty video game series. Released on November 7, 2006, the game was developed by Treyarch, and was the first major installment in the Call of Duty series not to be developed by Infinity Ward. It was also the first not to be released on the PC platform. It was released on the PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox, and Xbox 360. Call of Duty 3 follows the American, Canadian, British, and Polish armies as well as the French Resistance after D-Day in the Falaise Gap.

''Call of Duty: WWII''

Call of Duty: WWII is the fourteenth game in the series and was developed by Sledgehammer Games. It was released worldwide on November 3, 2017, for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The game is set in the European theatre, and is centered around a squad in the 1st Infantry Division, following their battles on the Western Front, and set mainly in the historical events of Operation Overlord.

''Warfare'' games

''Modern Warfare'' series

''Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare''
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is the fourth installment of the main series, and was developed by Infinity Ward. It is the first game in the series not to be set during World War II, but set in the modern day. The game was released for Microsoft Windows, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on November 7, 2007. Download and retail versions for Mac OS X were released by Aspyr in September 2008. As of May 2009, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare has sold over 13 million copies.
''Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered''
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered is a remastered version of ' that was released alongside the Legacy Edition, Legacy Pro Edition and Digital Deluxe Edition of ' on November 4, 2016, for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. It was later released standalone on June 27, 2017, for PS4, and July 27, 2017, for Xbox One and PC. The game was developed by Raven Software and executive produced by Infinity Ward.
''Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2''
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is the sixth installment of the main series. It was developed by Infinity Ward and published by Activision. Activision Blizzard announced Modern Warfare 2 on February 11, 2009. The game was released worldwide on November 10, 2009, for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Windows. A Nintendo DS iteration of the game, titled , was released alongside the game and the Wii port of Call of Duty : Modern Warfare. Modern Warfare 2 is the direct sequel to Call of Duty 4 and continues the same storyline, taking place five years after the first game and featuring several returning characters including Captain Price and "Soap" MacTavish.
''Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3''
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is a first-person shooter video game. It is the eighth installment of the Call of Duty series and the third installment of the Modern Warfare arc. Due to a legal dispute between the game's publisher Activision and the former co-executives of Infinity Ward – which caused several lay-offs and departures within the company – Sledgehammer Games assisted in the development of the game, while Raven Software was brought in to make cosmetic changes to the menus of the game. The game was said to have been in development since only two weeks after the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Sledgehammer was aiming for a "bug free" first outing in the Call of Duty franchise, and had also set a goal for Metacritic review scores above 95 percent.
The game continues the story from the point at which it ended in the and continues the fictional battle story between the United States and Russia, which evolves into the Third World War between NATO allied nations and ultra-nationalist Russia.
''Call of Duty: Modern Warfare''
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is the sixteenth entry in the Call of Duty series and is also a reboot of the Modern Warfare series. The story has been described to be darker and more realistic than previous Call of Duty games. It is set in a separate timeline from the other Modern Warfare games. The game was officially revealed on May 30, 2019, and released on October 25, 2019.
The second main battle royale installment in the Call of Duty franchise, titled , was released in March 2020, as a part of the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare video game but does not require purchase of it. The title exceeded 50 million players in the first month after release.

Other games

''Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare''
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is the eleventh main installment in the series, developed by Sledgehammer Games with assistance from Raven Software and High Moon Studios. It was released in November 2014. The game was the first game in the series to feature advanced movements, such as double jump and boost slide.
''Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare''
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare is the thirteenth main installment in the series, developed by Infinity Ward, and was published by Activision. The game was released on November 4, 2016.

''Black Ops'' story arc

''Call of Duty: World at War''

Call of Duty: World at War, developed by Treyarch, is the fifth installment of the main series. Released after Modern Warfare, it returns to the World War II setting of earlier titles, featuring the Pacific theater and Eastern front. The game uses the same proprietary game engine as Call of Duty 4 and was released for the PC, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360 consoles and the Nintendo DS handheld in North America on November 11, 2008, and November 14, 2008 in Europe. As of June 2009, Call of Duty: World at War has sold over 11 million copies. It acts as a prologue for Treyarch's next game, Black Ops, which is in the same universe, sharing characters and story references.

''Call of Duty: Black Ops''

Call of Duty: Black Ops is the seventh installment in the series, the third developed by Treyarch, and was published by Activision for release on November 9, 2010. It is the first game in the series to take place during the Cold War and also takes place partially in the Vietnam War. It was initially available for Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 and was later released for the Wii as well as the Nintendo DS.

''Call of Duty: Black Ops II''

Call of Duty: Black Ops II is the ninth main installment in the series, developed by Treyarch and published by Activision. The game was revealed on May 1, 2012. It was the first game in the series to feature future warfare technology, and the campaign features multiple branching storylines driven by player choice and multiple endings. It was later released on November 12, 2012.

''Call of Duty: Black Ops III''

Call of Duty: Black Ops III is the twelfth main installment in the series, developed by Treyarch and published by Activision. The game was released on November 6, 2015.

''Call of Duty: Black Ops 4''

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is the fifteenth main installment in the series. It was developed by Treyarch and published by Activision. The game was released on October 12, 2018. It was the first featured Call of Duty game to forgo a single-player campaign game mode, focusing only at the multiplayer aspect of the game. The game also introduced an entirely new battle royale game mode, called Blackout, in addition to multiplayer and zombies coop mode.

Standalone installment

''Call of Duty: Ghosts''

Call of Duty: Ghosts is the tenth main installment in the series, and was developed by Infinity Ward. The game was released on November 5, 2013. It was the first game to be developed for eighth-gen consoles such as PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Primary developer rotation

In 2006, Treyarch released Call of Duty 3, their first Call of Duty game of the main series. Treyarch and Infinity Ward signed a contract stating that the producer of each upcoming title in the series would alternate between the two companies. In 2010, Sledgehammer Games announced they were working on a main series title for the franchise. This game was postponed in order to help Infinity Ward produce Modern Warfare 3. In 2014, it was confirmed that Sledgehammer Games would produce the 2014 title, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, and the studios would begin a three-year rotation. After Sledgehammer developed Call of Duty: WWII, they began developing a new Call of Duty entry alongside Raven Software due for release in 2020. However, there were conflicts of interest between the two, which resulted in Treyarch taking over control of the project in order to speed up the development process.

Other games

Console titles

''Call of Duty: Finest Hour''

is the first console installment of Call of Duty, and was released on the GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Xbox. The PlayStation 2 and Xbox versions of the game include an online multiplayer mode which supports up to 32 players. It also includes new game modes.

''Call of Duty 2: Big Red One''

is a spin-off of Call of Duty 2 developed by Treyarch, and based on the American 1st Infantry Division's exploits during World War II. The game was released on GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Xbox.

''Call of Duty: World at War – Final Fronts''

is the PlayStation 2 adaptation of Call of Duty: World at War. Developed by Rebellion Developments, Final Fronts features three campaigns involving the U.S. fighting in the Pacific theater, the Battle of the Bulge, and the British advancing on the Rhine River into Germany.

''Call of Duty: The War Collection''

Call of Duty: The War Collection is a boxed set compilation of Call of Duty 2, Call of Duty 3 and Call of Duty: World at War. It was released for the Xbox 360 on June 1, 2010.

Handheld titles

''Call of Duty: Roads to Victory''

is a PSP game which is a portable spin-off of Call of Duty 3.

''Call of Duty: Modern Warfare: Mobilized''

is the Nintendo DS companion game for Modern Warfare 2. Developed by n-Space, the game takes place in the same setting as the main console game, but follows a different storyline and cast of characters. Playing as the S.A.S. and the Marines in campaign mode, both forces are trying to find a nuclear bomb.

''Call of Duty: Black Ops DS''

is the Nintendo DS companion game for Black Ops. Developed by n-Space, the game takes place in the same setting as the main console game, but follows a different storyline and cast of characters.

''Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified''

is a PlayStation Vita Call of Duty game.

PC titles

''Call of Duty Online''

Call of Duty Online was announced by Activision when the company first stated their interest in a Massively multiplayer online game in early 2011. By then, it had been in development for two years. Call of Duty Online is free-to-play for mainland China and is hosted by Tencent. Since Activision had lost the publishing rights to Call of Duty and several other franchises in China due to a legal dispute on most of the Western gaming consoles, it had been rumored that it would be Microsoft Windows-exclusive, since PCs hold the dominant share of gamers in mainland China.

Mobile titles

''Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2: Force Recon''

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2: Force Recon is the J2ME mobile game for Modern Warfare 2. Developed by Glu Mobile, the game takes place after 5 years Modern Warfare in Mexico.

''Call of Duty: Zombies'' and ''Zombies 2''

' is a first-person shooter video game developed by Ideaworks Game Studio, and published by Activision for iOS. It is a spin-off of the Call of Duty series, and based on the "Nazi Zombies" mode of '. A sequel for the iPhone and iPod Touch includes Shi No Numa that was originally released on the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.

''Call of Duty: Strike Team''

Call of Duty: Strike Team is a first and third-person shooter game developed by The Blast Furnace, and published by Activision for iOS. The game is set in 2020 with players tasked with leading a U.S. Joint Special Operations Team after the country "finds themselves in a war with an unknown enemy". The game was released on September 5, 2013.

''Call of Duty: Heroes''

Call of Duty: Heroes was a real-time strategy game developed by Faceroll Games, and published by Activision for Android and iOS. The game takes a resemblance to Clash of Clans and was released on November 26, 2014.

''Call of Duty: Mobile''

Call of Duty: Mobile is the franchise's mobile title for iOS and Android developed by Tencent Games' TiMi Studios. It was released on October 1, 2019. Previously, it was first announced on March 18, 2019 at the year's Game Developers Conference. As of October 4, 2019, the game has surpassed over 35 million downloads worldwide.

Canceled titles

''Call of Duty: Combined Forces''

Call of Duty: Combined Forces was a proposed concept draft originally intended to be a sequel to . However, due to multiple legal issues that arose between Spark Unlimited, Electronic Arts, and Activision as well as other production problems, the game's draft and scripts never came to be. The game was projected to cost $10.5 million to produce after Finest Hour was complete. Eventually, Activision deemed the pitch as more of an expansion than something entirely new, causing the company to reject the proposal and end their contract with Spark Unlimited shortly after.

''Call of Duty: Devil's Brigade''

Call of Duty: Devil's Brigade was a canceled first-person shooter for the Xbox 360 developed by Underground Entertainment. The game was set in World War II, mainly focusing on the Italian Campaign.

''Call of Duty: Vietnam''

Call of Duty: Vietnam was a third-person shooter set during the Vietnam War. It was in development for at least six to eight months at Sledgehammer Games. The development was stopped because Infinity Ward needed help finishing due to the employee firings and departures in 2010.

''Call of Duty: Roman Wars''

Call of Duty: Roman Wars was a canceled third and first-person video game in the Call of Duty franchise. The game was set in ancient Rome, and allowed players to take control of famous historical figure Julius Caesar, along with "low grunts", and officers of the Tenth Legion. It was eventually canceled, as Activision had uncertainties about branding it as a Call of Duty title.

Other media

Comic books

is a six-part comic book mini-series based on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. The storyline focuses on the backstory of the character Simon "Ghost" Riley. The series is published by WildStorm and the first issue was released on November 10, 2009, alongside the game.
Call of Duty: Zombies is a six-part comic book series published by Dark Horse Comics. The series ties in with the Zombies game mode of the Black Ops subseries developed by Treyarch. The series is co-written by Justin Jordan, Treyarch's Jason Blundell and Craig Houston. The series is illustrated by artist Jonathan Wayshak and colorist Dan Jackson. The cover arts are handled by artist Simon Bisley. The series was announced by Treyarch in July 2016, with the first issue slated for release in October. After a slight delay, the first issue was released on October 26, 2016. The five other issues were released in the months of 2017: issue #2 released on January 11, 2017; issue #3 released on March 1, 2017; issue #4 released on April 19, 2017; issue #5 released on June 21, 2017; and issue #6 released on August 23, 2017. A paperback edition containing all six issues was released on November 15, 2017.


The Call of Duty Real-Time Card Game was announced by card manufacturer Upper Deck.
In 2004, Activision, in cooperation with the companies Plan-B Toys and Radioactive Clown, released the "Call of Duty: Series 1" line of action figures, which included three American soldiers and three German soldiers from the World War II era. While the American G.I. action figure was made in 2004, Plan-B Toys later discontinued a controversial Nazi SS Guard action figure based on the Nazi Totenkopf officer seen in Call of Duty.
In 2008, McFarlane Toys announced their partnership with Activision to produce action figures for the Call of Duty series. McFarlane Toys' first series of action figures were released in October 2008 and consists of four different figures: Marine with Flamethrower, Marine Infantry, British Special Ops, and Marine with Machine Gun.

Short films

Find Makarov is a fan-made film that was well received by Call of Duty publishers, Activision, who contacted We Can Pretend and subsequently produced a second short film, Operation Kingfish.
' is a fan-made prequel to ' and was first shown at Call of Duty XP. The video was produced by We Can Pretend, with visual effects by The Junction, and was endorsed by Activision. The video tells the story of how Captain Price ended up in a Russian Gulag set before the events of Modern Warfare 2.


On November 6, 2015, upon the release of Black Ops III, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Activision Blizzard launched a production studio called Activision Blizzard Studios and are planning a live action Call of Duty cinematic universe in 2019. On February 16, 2018, it was announced that Stefano Sollima will direct the film. Days later, he told Metro UK that he is considering having both Tom Hardy and Chris Pine as the leads for the film. In an interview with FilmSlash, Sollima stated that the film will be a real soldier movie, not a war movie. On November 27, 2018, it was announced that Joe Robert Cole will be writing the sequel. Filming on the first film was supposed to start filming in Spring 2019 for a 2020 or 2021 release. In February 2020, Sollima revealed in an interview that the film is put on hold saying that it's not Activision's priority.


The Call of Duty games were used in esports, starting in 2006, alongside the game released at the time, '. Over the years, the series has extended with releases such as ', ', ', ', ', and . Games are played in leagues like Major League Gaming.
Players can compete in ladders or tournaments. The ladders are divided into several sub ladders such as the singles ladder, doubles ladder, team ladder and hardcore team ladder. The difference between the regular team ladder and the hardcore team ladder is the in-game settings and thus a rule differentiation. Winning ladder matches on a competitive website rewards the user with experience points which add up to give them an overall rank.
The tournaments offered on these websites provide players with the opportunity to win cash prizes and trophies. The trophies are registered and saved on the player's profile if/when they win a tournament and the prize money is deposited into his or her bank account. Call of Duty: Ghosts was the most competitively played game in 2014, with an average of 15,000 teams participating every season.
For the past 6 seasons in competitive Call of Duty, Full Sail University has hosted a prize giveaway, giving $2,500 to the top team each season. The other ladders give out credits and medals registered on players' profiles. Tournaments hosted on the Call of Duty: Ghostss Arena give cost from 15 to 30 credits, thus averaging at a cost of about $18.75 per tournament. If the player competes with a team, the prize money is divided and an equal cut is given to each player. Other tournaments with substantial prizes are hosted in specific cities and countries for LAN teams.
The biggest Call of Duty tournament hosted was, a tournament that began when Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 was released.
Playing Call of Duty competitively is most popular in Europe and North America, with users who participate in tournaments and ladder matches daily. Competitive players have an average of 500,000 followers on social media.
Activision launched a 12 team Call of Duty League, following a similar city-based franchise structure as the Overwatch League, in January 2020. The league's teams include those from Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Florida, London, Minnesota, New York, Paris, Seattle and Toronto, and with two teams from Los Angeles, OpTic Gaming Los Angeles and Los Angeles Guerrillas.

Call of Duty Endowment

The Call of Duty Endowment is a nonprofit foundation created by Activision Blizzard to help find employment for U.S. military veterans. The first donation, consisting of $125,000, was presented to the Paralyzed Veterans of America.
Co-chairman General James L. Jones is a former U.S. National Security Advisor. Founder Robert Kotick is the CEO of Activision Blizzard. Upon its founding in 2009, the organization announced a commitment to create thousands of career opportunities for veterans, including those returning from the Middle East. Annual awards given by the endowment include the “Seal of Distinction,” a $30,000 initial grant given to selected veteran's service organizations. In November 2014, the endowment launched the “Race to 1,000 Jobs” campaign to encourage gamers to donate money to and get involved in organizations that provide veterans with services., the Call of Duty Endowment had provided around $12 million in grants to veterans' organizations in the United States, which has helped find jobs for 14,700 veterans.
On March 30, 2010, CODE presented 3,000 copies of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, approximately $180,000 in value, to the U.S. Navy. The copies were delivered to over 300 ships and submarines as well as Navy Morale, Welfare, and Recreation facilities worldwide.

Controversies and legal matters

''Modern Warfare 2'' controversies

Modern Warfare 2 on release had a number of controversial matters. Most significantly, one level "No Russian" had the player experience a massacre of civilians at a Russian airport.

Fallout with Infinity Ward leadership

As Infinity Ward's founders Jason West and Vince Zampella started new contract negotiations to continue developing the Call of Duty Activision around 2007, a number of legal issues around between Infinity Ward and Activision. Ultimately, West and Zampella were forces out of Infinity Ward, later forming Respawn Entertainment within Electronic Acts. West and Zampella, as well as several Infinity Ward staff that left around the same time, filed lawsuits against Activision related to unpaid royalties and bonues. These lawsuits were ultimately settled by 2012.

Trademark infringement claims by AM General

, the manufacturer of the Humvee, sued Activision in 2017 for using the Humvee in multiple Call of Duty games. A federal district judge gave Activision a summary motion in its favor to dismiss the case in April 2020, stating that the purpose of the use of the Humvee in the games, to provide military realism, was far different than the trademark purpose that AM General had established, for selling to the military.