The most recent season of the Call of Duty League was one of the most exciting yet. Call of Duty’s current future is Cold War and the extensions to Warzone, but what does all of that mean for the League? The Call of Duty League has just concluded its 2020 Season. The event was a huge marking for how far the scene has grown. We now know a little more about the shape of the league in the future. While the Call of Duty league format is getting changed up, the league itself might not be getting any bigger any time soon.
The New Call of Duty League Format
The Call of Duty League is getting a new format for the 2021 Season. The latest season has just wrapped up, but we already know that there are a few big changes coming next time around.
The 2021 Season is going to be taking place in a 4 v 4 format. This new Call of Duty League format takes things in a different direction. Last time around, it was a five-player team. Teams will have to shake up their entire rosters to compensate for this change. It isn’t just ditching one of their top five players. They now have to shift players into different roles and combine roles to still get a full team out of four players.
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— Call of Duty League (@CODLeague) August 31, 2020
The new season of Call of Duty League format is due to launch later this year, so the League’s rosters won’t have much time at all to adjust to the change. On top of this, they’ll be dealing with the league switching over to Call of Duty Cold War partway through the season.
Is the Call of Duty League Expanding?
The new Call of Duty League format comes just after the competition’s big finale. The League has seen a much bigger response than many have expected. This has lead to a lot of calls for its expansion beyond just 12 teams in the whole league. Reports now say that the League format isn’t going to be expanding beyond this for the time being.
This isn’t due to a lack of interest, but because of some specific financial questions with the existing teams. The League is due to expand, but this is going to be delayed until the 2022 season because of franchising fees. The original teams paid $25 million to buy into the league. This amount is going to be increased for the next batch of teams. This fee was paid overtime, and it seems that the current teams are being given an extra year for this fee before they try to bring in any more teams.
With the new Call of Duty League’s format, there will be space for more teams to enter the league and help it become a more regular fixture. We’ll have to see how losing a player from the starting roster affects each of the individual teams too. We might see some cut players resurface next time around with newer teams.
What Does This Mean for Competitive Warzone?
Warzone is a separate entity entirely, but the new Call of Duty League format and expansion can help us see what will happen with that game. We’re likely to see a continuation of the type of tournaments that have been held in Warzone recently. This includes sponsored events like the recent Cash App tournament. There probably won’t be any more crossover between the Call of Duty League and Warzone. Players are free to play in Warzone, but the team and franchising structure isn’t going to be extended to the Battle Royale.
Competitive Battle Royales often have orgs with the biggest players. Some of the best Fortnite players belong to formal teams. However, this rarely governs who they play with in-game. Duos, Squads, and Trios are drawn from whoever the players regularly play with. Warzone would likely hit against a similar problem. Battle Royales need a much bigger prize pool, a more complicated scoring, competition structure, and generally some massive resources to get the attention of pros. For sponsored events like the Cash App tournament, that works great.
The Call of Duty League on the other hand plays into the city-based teams that dominate the biggest Esports titles like CS and Overwatch. This is a spectator sport and its format helps with funding. This is on the backfoot with the move to online after the pandemic, but that isn’t a permanent change. Activision’s focus seems to on the city-based Leagues and the teams. This doesn’t mean there aren’t big Warzone events. However, they’re likely to remain on their current level rather than progressing into Fortnite World Cup scale events.