Activision confirms the next Call of Duty will be a sequel to 2019's Modern Warfare

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Both a new game and Warzone experience will be designed together

Today, Activision Blizzard unveiled some changes coming for Call of Duty: Vanguard and Warzone. Alongside that, the publisher also confirms some details about what’s in store for the next year of CoD.

In today’s Warzone briefing, Activision confirms that Infinity Ward is taking the lead on both the new Call of Duty and the next Warzone experience. The two will be designed in tandem, with a new engine, from the ground up. And this year’s Call of Duty will be a sequel to Modern Warfare 2019.

The return to the Modern Warfare series will also bring a new shift in the Warzone battle royale space. Activision says it is building an “all-new playspace,” and also a new sandbox mode.

Yes, that sounds vaguely metaverse-y. In the wake of Microsoft’s announced acquisition of Activision Blizzard, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella highlighted the metaverse. A press release at the time said the acquisition will accelerate growth in Microsoft’s gaming business and “provide building blocks” for the metaverse. Whether it goes for that, more potential for user-created content, or just a new play mode for the Warzone experience, we’ll just have to wait and see.

Amid the acquisition news, Activision Blizzard has remained under scrutiny due to reports of a toxic internal culture. Microsoft president Brad Smith told CNBC in a recent interview that the company would commit to putting “the right people in the right position” at Activision Blizzard.

Call of Duty: Vanguard and Warzone are trucking along for now. I’m curious to see when this franchise ever moves away from the annual launch schedule. With concepts for a new “sandbox” and “playspace” floating around, it seems inevitable. But we’ll see more of what Infinity Ward and Activision has in store as the year progresses.