One of the most important aspects of a live service game is its ability to keep players entertained for long periods of time. This can be done in several ways, but a common trend is to organize temporary events aimed at attracting players. Call of Duty: Warzoneone of the most popular free-to-play live service games, relies heavily on its seasonal events, most recently with the implementation of Godzilla and King Kong.
The event, called Operation Monarch, launched on May 10 and allows players to battle alongside the massive monsters. While the event itself was intriguing and fun at times, the marketing prior to Operation Monarch was highly misleading, in part due to the fact that King Kong and Godzilla don’t fight each other at all. Instead, the two beasts just wander aimlessly around the map, leading to a great sense of disappointment.
The Operation Monarch event sends 60 players to Caldera, aiming to be the last team standing. The catch is that Godzilla and King Kong – known in-game as Titans – roam the island and take out players with ease. As you collect loot and damage the Titans, you’ll earn information that eventually accumulates and turns into rewards like a Loadout Drop, Gas Mask, or even a controllable killstreak that lets you actually control the two creatures (which is admittedly very cool) in order to do other things. attack players.
The mode itself has a whole host of issues, but the most glaring one is that King Kong and Godzilla don’t fight each other, despite the trailers making it seem like that’s what would happen. Many fans expected it to be almost like one of Splatoon’s Splatfest events, with the community having to choose between two teams – in this case Team Godzilla or Team Kong – to battle it out during the event.
Instead, Limited Time Mode (LTM) feels more like regular Resurgence Battle Royale, with a pinch of Kong and Godzilla on it, rather than the monsters being the focus. There’s literally a shot in one of the teaser trailers where King Kong takes on Godzilla, so it’s easy to see why the community was upset when this didn’t take place during the actual event.
To get an idea of what the community thought of the event, war zone streamer and influencer ModernWarzone have released a poll. Of the 24,194 polled, more than 70% voted that the Operation Monarch event was a “loss”. It’s a small sample, but given the overwhelming results, it’s an informative snapshot of the general reception of the event.
Used to be #OperationMonarch a W or an L?
— ModernWarzone (@ModernWarzone) May 11, 2022
One of Activision’s priorities with war zone is to keep newcomers engaged, which can be tricky due to the complexity of the game. With the Operation Monarch event, a newcomer or a casual player can still be absolutely decimated during a match, depending on who they’re paired up against. Experienced players can easily sit back, shoot at one of the Titans and gather information to eventually get their own custom gear, which can be used to easily take out players who don’t know what they’re doing. In this regard it is an attractive starting point for experienced players, but the casuals will probably struggle.
Since this mode plays like a worse version of standard battle royale, there isn’t much reason to rewatch it after a few matches. Sure, the spectacle of seeing the two huge Titans is fun, but it gets old quickly because there isn’t much content in this mode. It would have been interesting if Activision implemented something more cinematic, especially since the stars would be the two giants. Perhaps it could have been made special by giving players the option to land on top of the creatures to fight each other. Perhaps we could have seen a similar version of what’s in the game now, but with the ability to make the Titans stronger so they can battle it out.
For all my criticisms, I recognize that mixing massive monsters effectively into a seemingly grounded military shooter is tricky – especially from a development standpoint. Consider war zone only a few years old, it makes sense that developer Raven Software (and other support teams) are still learning what works and what doesn’t. In this case, it is a huge undertaking to find a way to satisfy all players. Players are often willing to forgive a developer missteps here and there – the main problem is that the trailers didn’t match the final product.
Ultimately, Operation Monarch is not the worst event war zone has received. war zone has a history of terrible events such as the Forefront reveal, forcing players to shoot at a train for an excruciatingly long time. So compared to that event, Operation Monarch is an improvement, although the bar is admittedly low.
Given the precedent of Fortnitewith large-scale events generally favorably received, it’s easy to see why players wouldn’t be impressed with the warzones Operation Monarch. Activision must look to the road Fortnite does its events – especially the large-scale modes with cooperative gameplay – and takes notes for war zone† Something like the massive Fortnite The Galactus event where players could enjoy a more guided experience was fantastic, so maybe Activision could put their own spin on a similar formula to create something more engaging. Operation Monarch was certainly a step in the right direction, but Activision still has a lot of improvements to make when it comes to warzones events.