Treyarch and Activision will be unleashing mod tools for the PC version of Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 starting in 2016. The company recently announced over on their official website that the tools would enter early alpha testing starting March, 2016.
One of the most requested features from the gaming community since Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has been the return of modding tools and dedicated servers, preferably both together.
The site lists a few of the features that will be available to modders, including tools to make maps and game modes, as well as support for unranked dedicated servers to run custom mods on those servers, and integrated tools for browsing custom servers through the Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 client.
A lot of die-hard fans of Call of Duty excused the series no longer supporting mods by stating that paying for map packs insured that they would get quality content from Activision and their subsidiary development studios. However, hardcore PC gamers always point to some of the more high-end total conversion mods to make the case that community mods can be just as high-quality as anything the developers put out, such as the Call of Duty: Galactic Warfare total conversion. You can check out some gameplay courtesy of CriousGamers.
This opportunity for PC gamers to dabble back into the modding scene with real tools for Call of Duty is a major upgrade over what they’ve been handed down over the years since Modern Warfare, which was released back in 2007.
Treyarch’s director of development, Cesar Stastny, explained that things may not entirely go as planned but they’re hoping to get news up and out as to when they’ll start the testing and when gamers can start joining in on the modding action…
I wonder how well this will work with winning back the trust of the PC gaming audience? This seems especially poignant given that Electronic Arts and DICE have moved away from their roots in the modding scene, locking down their games and preventing users from easily making mods for highly popular games such as Battlefield 3, Battlefield 4 and the upcoming Star Wars: Battlefront. Heck, even Need For Speed is locked down, with the newest one being always-on.
I’m just shocked that it was Activision that decided to reach back out into the modding community to bolster their properties. Perhaps they’ll be looking for Valve to reinstate the paid mods again to make some bank on the community’s efforts? I guess we’ll find out in 2016.