Earlier today, Activision (News - Alert), riding high from its recent quarterly numbers showing the company doing surprisingly well in the midst of a weak economy, added another feather to its cap by announcing that its upcoming product, Call of Duty: Black Ops II, due on stores November 13, will let gamers show off through a special live streaming mode that will work with YouTube (News - Alert).
Call of Duty: Black Ops II's live stream capability, originally shown at the Gamescom event in Germany, will now allow players with webcams to upload their live streams to YouTube, complete with any "color commentary" they may be applying at the time. Anyone with a YouTube account will be able to stream video, but those players with Call of Duty Elite status will have access to a set of additional features, including player cards, class loadouts, statistics on the matches, and career stats on other Call of Duty titles that have Elite support.
Streaming efforts previously required the combination of a third-party recorder and a variety of different cable linkups, making it cumbersome and a seldom-used product. Now, the floodgates will be opened and a horde of YouTube videos featuring frags, sweet kills and amazing headshots will likely be arriving in short order.
Treyarch, who developed the game with Activision, is banking on Call of Duty: Black Ops II being as fun to watch as it is to play. Its studio head, Mark Lamia, said of the initiative, “With our competitive play and eSports initiatives, we wanted to deliver live streaming capabilities built right into ‘Call of Duty: Black Ops II’, because ‘Call of Duty’ is not only fun and exciting to play, but we believe it will be just as exciting to watch.”
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While it's unclear if this will prove to be the case – a few videos involving the Benny Hill theme "Yakety Sax" will almost certainly show up – there will likely be more than enough takers using the service to make it well worthwhile for Activision and Treyarch to include it. While viewers may be in comparatively short supply, budding filmmakers likely will not be.
Still, it's clear that adding features to a game already likely to be a big seller can't hurt, and providing more value for customers is always the sort of thing that seldom goes wrong for the company doing so.
A weak economy means companies need to do a better job of showing customers why it's worth parting with their money, and though plenty likely would have already for this one, that addition of easy live-streaming certainly won't hurt.
Edited by Braden Becker