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Infinity Ward doing Call of Duty 2

Yes, we're shocked. And you'll be able to play its new branching levels in separate soldier-specific campaigns or chronologically, too. More details inside.

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Image credit: Eurogamer

Gob-smacking revelation of the day: Infinity Ward is developing Call of Duty 2 for Activision.

Confirmation that the Call of Duty developer, which Activision owns, is working on the sequel to its own game finally arrived in our inboxes overnight as Activision released details of some of the new thinking behind the second PC instalment in its World War II first-person shooter series.

It's due out this autumn, as you might imagine, and aims to expand on what worked in the original by introducing branching level design, a more convincing squad dynamic, realistic battle tactics and, you know, advanced AI - capable no doubt of fighting valiantly whilst also sparing a thought for poor Agnes/Katherine/Grettel back home.

Powered by its own proprietary engine this time, Call of Duty 2 will serve up four individual soldier stories - one more than the original and its expansion, which gave us British, American and Russian perspectives - and interestingly it'll be possible to play through them one by one or simply play through the game's historical scenarios in chronological order.

On the battlefield, tactics like flanking and laying down suppressing fire ought to work this time, rather like they do in Gearbox's Brothers In Arms, which is probably the best new World War II first-person shooter we've played in, ooh, the last half an hour.

Likewise squad involvement and individualism, which will be upped considerably, with squads now apparently able to take on a variety of objectives on multi-pathed missions, and even say things to the player that make sense depending on the situation - the latter thanks to a new "Battle Chatter System". Relax, Acti, you don't need to play the EA game with this stuff.

We're also told that visibility will be a key factor, as it often is for people who like to see where they're going, with smoke, sandstorms and blizzards cropping up in various places - those various places including North Africa and sub-zero Russia, rather obviously.

And you may well have to trek through your own blizzard to get hold of it, as, with the game due out in the US this autumn, we'd be surprised if Activision didn't launch its latest CoD piece in Europe in time for Christmas. Assuming you live somewhere nice, anyway; the only hail we get in dreary London at the moment is a hail of abuse. Yes, fine, whatever, I'll get a haircut.

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