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Before Battlefield 1, There Was COD: Roman Wars

Before Battlefield 1, There Was COD: Roman Wars

Everyone is excited about Battlefield 1 taking the players to the trenches of World War I, while COD: Infinite Warfare is getting bashed for putting the players in space battles. But what if we told you, that there existed a COD project that was supposed to be set in Ancient Rome?


That’s right. According to GamesRadar, about eight years ago, Activision almost considered a pitch where Call of Duty would’ve taken place in ancient Rome. The story would’ve followed the story of a soldier in Julius Caesar’s trustworthy tenth legion, with first person sword combat, war elephants and even a playable Julius Caesar himself.  As we know, The COD franchise is known for one thing; guns, guns and even more guns. So hearing about this might come as a surprise. However, the tremendous success that the titles witnessed made Activision confident enough to get a little experimental, hence the demo for Roman Wars even made it to CEO Bobby Kotick’s desk.

The game was developed in the Unreal Engine by Vicarious Visions, the studio best known for Skylanders. The footage shows a Colosseum-style combat (very gladiator-like). In the game you could fight on horseback, climb siege towers and ride elephants into battle. GamesRadar’s source, known as Polemus, said that Roman Wars was born out of a test to see what Activision’s studios could create with the Call of Duty name. Roman Wars was built from the foundation of Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 and utilized both first and third-person perspectives.

Unfortunately the game never got to see the light of day. There was concern about stiff competition that the game would face, as the release may have coincided with that of Ryse: Son of Rome, which caused them to push for Advanced Warfare. However, the poor ratings received by Ryse show that Roman Wars might have been more successful. There was also apprehension about “oversaturating” the market (talk about irony). That’s why you might see Ubisoft flags in the background of the video as the gameplay was taken from a build that was “repurposed and pitched to Ubisoft, as just Roman Wars,” after Activision turned it down.

Source: GamesRadar

What is your take on this? Would you have liked to see a COD title that focused on swordplay? Let us know in the comments.

For more news and reviews, keep checking back at Gaming Central.

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