After a few hectic days of teasing via a viral marketing campaign, Activision and Treyarch have announced that the next Call of Duty will be revealed on Sunday, April 26th via a new teaser trailer released earlier today. In less than surprising news, they have also confirmed that the game is indeed called Black Ops III and the official Call of Duty website has been updated.
Today’s announcement means that we’re just over two weeks away from the world premiere reveal of Black Ops 3. While details on the reveal are yet to be announced, previous Call of Duty reveal trailers have premiered during big televised sporting events, and often they’ve been on Sunday. With the announcement now out in the wild, the viral campaign may halt, but if not, we’ll keep you updated on any teasers that are released between now and the 26th.
If you’ve not checked out the teaser trailer yet, head down right below to watch! If you’ve seen it, then keep on reading to find some of the details contained within…
Teaser Trailer Lowdown
The teaser trailer is exactly what a teaser trailer should be. Over a minute long, the trailer delivered enough to get us hyped and intrigued, all while not spoiling what the game is about before its big reveal. The presentation of the teaser itself was also great, with community V.I.P’s having exclusive announcement dibs and nothing else about the game, including the title being revealed, other than a single phrase: #BackInBlack. This hashtag is enough to get anyone excited before even clicking play and has two clear messages: 1) Black Ops is back this year, 2) Treyarch are back this year.
Continuing in the tradition of the viral campaign, the teaser trailer doesn’t show any gameplay or other clips at all. Instead, it mainly consists of words, numbers and symbols used to convey hidden messages to the Call of Duty community. Any casual player would just pass this trailer off as a nice announcement of an announcement without taking a second glance, but Treyarch and Activision know their audience, and they know that the Call of Duty community were always going to decipher every little detail of the trailer.
Starting with the audio, from the very beginning we’re treated with a flashback to not only the very first Black Ops game, but to the teaser trailer for that game. The words “this should help you remember everything” take us all the way to where the series began, and is used as a catalyst to remember how we got to the likely finale to the trilogy that we are heading towards. It’s clear at this point that we will be visiting the Black Ops story once again! Where will the final saga take us? Which characters will return? Are we likely to see the Masons or Viktor Reznov once again?
Following this first quote, the teaser then reminds us of one of Black Ops’ key story elements: the interrogation of Alex Mason was a required strategy to overturn his brainwashed mind and to prevent a sleeper cell from being activated. As mentioned in our numerous articles about the viral campaign, this moment appears to have a key similarity with the viral teasers. In the viral teasers, it appears that a doctor is helping a patient visit a tranquil place in his mind. Whether used to aid the patient’s post-traumatic stress, as a brainwash method or something else entirely remains to be seen, but ultimately there is a connection between how the two stories focus on controlling the mind.
Immediately after we’re reminded of the ‘numbers’, an intense and thrilling soundtrack kicks in which accompanies the voiceovers fantastically right throughout the teaser. Eventually, the trailer begins to quote some of the more memorable pieces of dialogue from Black Ops 2.
Mostly all of the the audio is used to symbolize that the game will be set within the Black Ops universe by flashing us back to existing dialogue, but towards the end we’re gifted a very interesting new quote which appears to be from Black Ops 3: “Our greatest barrier is our own fear. Our own doubts. The only thing holding us back is how far we are willing to go.” Is this perhaps said by Dr. Salim, who seems to be the voiceover lead in the viral teasers? In analysing his comment, it appears to highlight how as humans we can let our mind hold us back. Perhaps his work with patients is to use techniques to improve our thought process and get rid of any fear? In doing so, these techniques would be able to create ruthless and fearless soldiers. Are his techniques just oral methods used to engage a patient’s brain, or will it go beyond that, possibly featuring physical enhancements (surgical improvements, such as transplants?)
Moving on to the visual elements, there’s so many hidden messages in the teaser. The messages are delivered by text and symbols which all swirl onto the screen in great numbers, making it quite difficult to discover everything yet also enticing.
In this screen capture (01 seconds), the coordinates in the top left are: 1.3000 N, 103.8000 E. If searched on Google, you will find that the location is New Town Primary School in Singapore. It’s very likely that this is one of the locations where the story campaign will visit.
In this screen capture (06 seconds), there’s one number in particular that pops out more than once: 115. As fans of the Zombies lore will know, 115 plays a key role in the backstory for Treyarch’s Zombies mode. Introduced in World at War’s Shi No Numa map, Element 115, which is found in meteorites, was the driving force behind reanimating the undead. Seeing this number in the teaser appears to tell us one thing: Black Ops 3 will have a Zombies mode. Of course, it would be more surprising if Treyarch decided to ditch their much-loved mode, but they likely wouldn’t be promoting 115 in the trailer if the mode wasn’t in the game (the game’s official description, seen further down below, also confirms Zombies).
To the right of the 115 on the top left is bit of a mysterious symbol which looks like an eagle’s claw or something. What this symbol has to do with anything, we don’t know. Like the trident logo, which also appears in this teaser trailer, it could be some sort of organization/faction logo. Potentially it could even be some Perk logo or something, but I doubt Treyarch would tease a multiplayer item like that this early on.
Another interesting thing worth noting in this image are these coordinates: 30.0500 N, 31.2333 E. If you search these coordinates on Google, the location you’ll come across is the 6th October Bridge in Cairo, Egypt. As it’s on the same frame as the 115 club, it could be possibly that this is hinting towards a Zombies location, but most likely it refers to a location you’ll come across in the story campaign. An epic shootout or car chase on a bridge? Sounds like a classic Call of Duty mission to us.
In this screen capture (16 seconds) there is a long vertical sequence of mysterious symbols. One theory speculated about these symbols is that they could be a look at the Prestige or Level Ranks. The fifth one down, in particular, resembles a rank that’s been used in previous titles I’m sure. Throughout the trailer, there are plenty of strange symbols and letter sequences, many of which won’t be cracked this early on. Perhaps the symbols shown here are part of some code that needs to be cracked to reveal a hidden message.
In this screen capture (23 seconds), there are more coordinates: 47.3667 N, 8.5500 E. Doing a search for this location will take you to Zurich, Switzerland. To be exact, this location is a prison called Gefangis Zurich. Again, this location seems like a prime candidate for a campaign level and further shows that like most Call of Duty titles, Black Ops 3 will be a worldwide affair. Will the protagonist perhaps get locked up? If so, maybe there will be an escape level? Or the protagonist could be visiting another character? It’s also worth noting that the coordinates are on top of what appears to be the outline of a weapon such as a pistol.
In this screen capture (34 seconds), a trident logo that appeared in one of the viral teasers shows up to the left of the M in the center. Initially, there was speculation that this logo would be the logo for the game, but the styled III seems to be instead. Most likely this may be a logo for a prominent in-game organization, such as the team that the protagonist may be working for. Will water perhaps play a part in the game? Strangey enough, a real-life company Watermans Applied Science utilize the same trident logo shown.
During this capture, the letters Z, M, B and S also appear on different parts of the screen. This is likely another tease at the Zombies mode (which is confirmed to be returned further on in this article). Due to their surrounding of the trident logo, could the two be related?
In this screen capture (44 seconds), the messages are joined together to form the outline of the Black Ops 3 cover star, as will be revealed in its entirety further below. The cover character bears a resemblance to the Black Ops 1 cover; a soldier sitting down holding two pistols. The Black Ops series comes full circle.
In this screen capture (59 seconds), the Black Ops 3 logo is revealed. The logo follows the same pattern as the Black Ops 2 logo and has an orange colour theme and a flame/fire effect. This explains the embers image that was sent to select members of the community.
As straightforward as can be. The final frame of the teaser trailer simply states that the official reveal will happen on Sunday, 26th April when the world premiere trailer becomes available. For details on the reveal, including when and how you can tune in, stay tuned in the coming weeks. Just over two weeks to go!
These are just a few of the details we’ve found ourselves and we’ve saw mentioned by analyses from the rest of the community. With that in mind, there’s likely still plenty hidden in the trailer, some of which probably won’t be fully uncovered until days or weeks. The random letter sequences, other strange symbols, and oriental writing styles in particular are all something that may take a while to crack.
Official Marketing Assets
With the game’s announcement, Activision has released some official high-quality assets (such as the Black Ops III logo), and the official website has been updated. Seemingly unintentional, users have also found some additional material through the official website, including the box art cover and game description. The description itself offers us much more interesting information than was first revealed. The game is confirmed to take place in a “dark, twisted future” and will feature “cutting-edge military robotics.” The game will of course include Campaign and Multiplayer modes, but the description has also confirmed that Zombies will indeed be included. The tagline appears to be “How far are you willing to go?”
“Call of Duty®: Black Ops 3 is the first title for next-gen hardware in the critically acclaimed Black Ops series. Developed by Treyarch, the award-winning creator of the two most played games in Call of Duty® history. Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 deploys players into a dark, twisted future where a new breed of Black Ops soldiers emerges and the lines are blurred between our own humanity and the technology we created to stay ahead, in a world where cutting-edge military robotics define warfare. With three unique game modes: Campaign, Multiplayer, and Zombies, it providing fans with the deepest and most ambitious Call of Duty ever.”