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Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s co-op campaign could have been awesome

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 may have been long forgotten, especially as we head towards the release of Modern Warfare 2 and its multiplayer beta, but a trove of leaked documents now reveals that Treyarch’s reviled multiplayer FPS was originally an amazing sounding co-op campaign.

You may recall that when Black Ops 4 launched in 2018, it was mostly multiplayer only and featured traditional deathmatches, zombies, and the Blackout battle royale mode. However, the shooter used to offer a full-fledged campaign focused on co-op and 2v2 gameplay. And from what we’ve seen, it could have been very good.

In Black Ops 4’s apocalyptic near future, two factions would compete for what remains of Earth’s natural resources: the authoritarian World United Nations and the nascent Free People’s Army. At the beginning of the campaign, you choose which faction you want to fight for and then ally yourself with a friend online. However, as you battle AI enemies, complete objectives, and complete missions, an opposing pair of players representing the opposite faction played against you.

A typical level would involve straightforward PvE co-op, but there would be certain areas – a room, a battlefield, a vehicle section – where the gameplay would transition to PvP as you and your buddy compete with the opposing cooperative partnership. Depending on who won, the narrative of the campaign will branch in different directions, with multiple storylines and endings available.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 co-op campaign could have been amazing: A Black Ops 4 drone attacks a ground target in the cut co-op campaign

You could earn XP by completing the campaign, and Treyarch not only designed four full missions and characters to represent each faction, but was apparently ready for DLC and additional seasons for Black Ops 4’s “Career” mode plan before it was eventually scrapped after complaints from testers that it was too repetitive.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Co-op Campaign could have been awesome: A player prepares to board a vehicle in the Call of Duty Black Ops 4 Co-op Campaign

Some of this information was originally reported by Kotaku in 2019, but a new leak containing 400+ planning pages, design documents, screenshots, and level maps has just surfaced on Reddit as originally spotted by Eurogamer. This is another story in a week that’s turning out to be a good week for leaks and abandoned versions of old games, as we previously covered how the utterly derided Duke Nukem Forever was ahead of its time but nerfed before launch.

Black Ops 4’s campaign mode may be sadly dead, but Call of Duty lives and kicks (and shoots and stabs) courtesy of the upcoming Modern Warfare 2 – check out our guide to the Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer beta release date and how to access it once it’s started. There’s also plenty of fun to be had with Warzone Season 4, but be sure to arm yourself with the best loadout drop. And if you feel tired from Call of Duty, maybe try something else from the best FPS games or even the best multiplayer games on PC like Fortnite and Overwatch.

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