Beta Feedback: How You’re Helping Shape Blackout in Call of Duty Black Ops 4

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Beta Feedback: How You’re Helping Shape Blackout in Call of Duty Black Ops 4

Treyarch drops by to share detailed notes on how the Blackout experience will continue to evolve leading up to October 12.

We hope you’ve enjoyed the Blackout Beta as much as we’ve enjoyed playing it along with you. Armed with your incredible feedback, we continued to update the Beta throughout the week and will keep listening as we improve the game in time for launch. That’s what betas are for, after all.

Blackout is our own distinctive Battle Royale, and we knew we had to make this something special for our fans from the start. Our teams have set out to create a uniquely Black Ops experience, featuring time-tested Call of Duty gameplay, signature Treyarch design philosophy, and a celebration of 10 years of Black Ops heritage. We know we have to nail the things that people love about the genre, improve on the elements that we want to take to the next level, and bring plenty of new ideas to the table. Your feedback this week has been encouraging to say the least, and everyone here at the studio can’t wait to show you what’s coming in the future.

With the Beta wrapped up and everyone counting the days to October 12th, we’d like to take this opportunity to look back at the biggest feedback items that came from the community and provide some deeper insights into what we’re doing to improve the game, just as we did following the Multiplayer Beta. Here’s a look at some of the hot topics we’re tracking between now and launch:


Armor’s role in Blackout is inherently unique compared to its role in MP. You only live once in Blackout, and you’re rewarded for scavenging in areas that often put you in perilous positions, especially as the Collapse gets smaller in the late game. For this and other reasons, we’ve been cautious about making sweeping changes to the way Armor works, though we’ve made some tweaks during the Beta and continue to evaluate how Armor will work at launch.

Every Item in the game, from Armor to Weapons to Perks, is constantly re-evaluated to ensure they fit in the correct place in the game’s meta. You can expect Armor to be tuned multiple times as the game, and the gameplay content, evolves over time.

Some changes to Armor since the start of the Beta include:

  • Spawn frequency of Level 3 Armor has been reduced by 75% compared to its initial spawn rate in the Beta.
  • Level 3 Armor will now most frequently be found in Stashes and Supply Drops, though it may occasionally spawn in the world.
  • Level 3 Armor now breaks sooner and passes more damage to the player wearing it, and still offers headshot and other types of damage mitigation. We’ve heard your concerns that Level 3 Armor was still perhaps too powerful by the end of the Beta, and will be evaluating the data to see what other tweaks may be required.
  • Level 2 Armor was also minorly adjusted during the Beta and will potentially be tweaked further in time for launch.
  • Players will see an indicator of the condition of their own Armor, and those of their teammates, in the HUD. This provides a more granular indicator of the damage that your Armor has taken beyond the Armor icon and will let you know if it’s time to seek out a replacement.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 – Blackout

Audio Adjustments

We saw several reports of footsteps sounding louder or quieter than expected, and not always being able to tell the direction enemies were coming from. Others reported an uneven balance of footstep volume between teammates and enemies. We’re on it. Improvements to how audio will work at launch include:

  • Sounds will be properly impacted by walls, floors, ceilings, and other objects in the world. This means enemies directly above or below the player should no longer sound louder than expected.
  • The volume of the cargo plane, punching, game countdown timers, and everything else you’ve brought to our attention (and many things you have not) will be reviewed in-depth as part of that process. The game has not yet had its final audio mix.
  • Teammates’ footsteps will be quieter compared to enemy footsteps.
  • The Awareness Perk will further reduce the loudness of the footsteps of your teammates.
  • All audio presets will be available at launch in the Options menu. Audio presets can make a big difference, and we offer many choices for those who play with headphones or surround sound.

Inventory & Item Management

On the first day of the Beta, the community almost unanimously asked for faster Item pickups. As a result, we made pickup speed as fast as possible while still protecting players from accidentally picking up an Item when attempting to reload.

Console players have asked for an option in Settings to allow them to tap a button to instantly pick up an Item. We like this idea a lot, and want to be sure we get it right and test it thoroughly.

The Quick Equip menu can be fantastic for making Inventory adjustments quickly, but could also get in the way of picking up Items, opening doors, or entering vehicles. We adjusted the Quick Equip menu so it automatically closes after a few seconds with no interactions. We are also looking into the feasibility of closing the Quick Equip menu if the player performs other actions such as firing a weapon, changing stance, starting a Sprint, etc.

We’ve already improved the proximity and height at which you can interact with Items on the ground so you don’t have to look down at that Item so precisely. It’s being tested now and is very likely to be in when the game comes out.

Last but not least, we are creating designs for other “quality of life” improvements to these very important game systems including, but not limited to:

  • Evaluating options to improve the Stash interface when looting enemies and containers on console.
  • Adding a new method to allow you to quickly remove all Attachments from a weapon.
  • Incorporating a way to swap Attachments between Weapons, if both Weapons support the same attachment.

And finally, we’ve got some fun Beta stats to share. While the (very unofficial) numbers, Mason, are still coming in across all platforms, we’ve poked through the data to find some of our favorites to share:

  • Players eradicated 7.5 million Zombies. Don’t worry, there’s plenty more where those came from.
  • Squadmates were revived 26 million times. Thanks for being team players.
  • 3.3 billion Items were picked up. That’s “billion” with a B.
  • Over 64 million Stashes were spawned. That’s a lot of loot.
  • The longest Combat Axe kill distance was 213 meters, or about 698 feet. Well done!
  • Players managed to eliminate 123 people with a basketball. Is ball still life?

Most kills by an individual player:

  • Solos: 25
  • Duos: 29
  • Quads: 25

Most kills by a team:

  • Duos: 32
  • Quads: 38

And that’s a wrap. Please keep your feedback coming and give us your detailed thoughts in our official post-Beta survey. Thank you for taking this journey with us so far, and know that we’re committed to listening and communicating with you along the way to make Blackout the best experience it can be. This is just the beginning.

– Treyarch

Comments are closed.


  • I was thinking for the Blackout mode you guys have Zombis spawn in the storm and track people down like hunters but they only spawn when they storm gets smaller and the smaller the circle the more zombies we have to survive against and please make snipers do more damage to lvl 3 armor it should take two hits to knock someone out not three

    • I wish it was a open beta… it’s KILLING ME not being able to get in on the new call of duty blackout action! I’ve always been a Huge C.O.D. fan and I just can’t afford the newest games these days.. well at least I get to watch it on YouTube

  • Should have some kind of armor repair kit(must stop to use and take 15 sec to use) and have different repair kit 25% 50%…. so people who play aggressive aren’t at a disadvantage after one gun fight

  • I am glad the armor is being looked into because it was one of the biggest issues I had with the beta. However, I can not understand why the healing and reviving is so insanely fast. I mean if you are being shot at by a sniper you can literally heal faster than he can shoot you. I really don’t get it. It makes no sense to me

  • It would be good to have a mode on Blackout that everyone starts the game with a class he has created and the only things to pick up from the ground would be ammo and health stuff…because it can get boring setting up a game for 20 minutes and be 5 mins in combat..everybody should start with a loadout of their own choice and the only collectibles should be ammo,health,grenades etc

  • Loving all of these adjustments. I came here to provide some feedback but you really covered everything I was going to say. Armor needs adjusting just like you said. Being able to remove all items from a gun, swap items between guns, faster movement between the inventory and game, etc… Well done! Really enjoyed the beta! Can’t wait for the final release!

    • No this is not a good idea because it’s a battle Royale not free for all you gotta do what you gotta do to survive

  • Crossplay?

  • Bata was fun. I do think lvl 3 should be very limited. Also you should be able to jump out with your weapon of your choice say no ammo, or make it so you pick up the first gun automatically. Can’t tell you how many times I walked over a gun hit square and backed up just so someone else could pick it up and kill me with it had to look straight down while on top of the weapon. That is the only thing I can think of right now on blackout. The regular multi player ( what I have always loved ) was fun too but you should have a mobile app to change classes set up weapon and track your progress (show off and rub in your buddy’s face) I Know you are hard at work buffing for your launch but you have to get that Mobil app.

  • couple things that would help while playing. 1 is a kill counter for your squad. 2 a kill notification for your squad separate from the game notification so you can easily disengage from a downed enemy. 3 is to make sure there is some punishment from intentional team killing . thank you

  • How do I get the beta?

  • Needs more wepon drops and change controls on driving and there needs to be a zombie horde that’s only allowed to be in the storm so it’s different and the zombies do damage

  • I never. Got beta. Tho

  • You guys already covered the armor and item pick up speed. Those are my biggest concerns. Great Beta! Had a lot of fun with it. A lot of good things were put into it. I would like to see a machine gun added for the pilot of the helicopters. Atleast for solo. Besides the armor and pick up issues (being slow and having to look all the way to the ground) I can’t say I have anything else to add.

  • It would be great if you can shoot through a wall then why can’t you shoot through a wall then why not a oil barrel or a door a staircase it would only make sense that you can.

  • I feel like the guns are hard to see, its almost blending into the ground. It might be for realistic purposes, but it would be definatly better if it could be better to see them.

  • I like all the call of duty series hoping to play this game soon

  • I love Black opps 4 it’s really cool…but sometime in the future I would love 4 y’all 2 remaster Black opps 2.

  • Lol how about the fact that it frequently, for some reason, doesn’t let people join lobbies to play in squads. Trying to play with my friend and tried for almost an hour to get him into my lobby, no luck, just getting error codes. Come back 20 minutes later and it works. WTF.

  • There should be way to repair your vehicle

  • They out done themselves I just love the feeling of revisiting the old maps in one bigger map using vehicles Visiting zombies locations and I loved it when they made the boss event that was awesome now I feel like I’m going to be prepared when I see that monster in zombies maps

  • You should find a way to not copy any other battle royale and to try to make Black out unique

  • I agree why must you guys copy other games battle royal why not make your own it would pretty awesome if you guys would make a modern runescape but black ops version I think that would be amazing

  • Blackout Should Be Free to play. I personally would pay anything to have a Ghost (MW2) Skin on Blackout, anything to play with the intervention once again. It’s a Battle Royale Don’t expect People to stay on a Battle Royale Game that is Updated or has a DLC every 3 months… Making it Free to play will attract more players and get you more revenue.

  • Set yourself even more apart from the existing battle Royale games by making Blackout split screen compatible. Please and thank you

  • Needs melee weapons that interact with brawler perk since that one seems to be always lying around somewhere. Also different types of “armor” like ghillie suit armor and stealth ninja type armor or something to go with the melee sneak style. Also dual wielding of pistols and allowing them to have a decent amount of attachments. Shot guns still terrible even in Blackout. Make them not crap in both game modes plz.

  • I don’t think we would be mad if you wanted to release the game 2 weeks sooner :)!!! Love the new mode ..excited to hear the fixes you all are thinking of!

  • Zombies out side of the zone would be a cool COD spin off of the regular old “battle royal storm”. I think this would encourage people to remain in the circle and play the game out rather than stock up on healing items and wait out the fight from the other side. Also, many comments have suggested that Level 3 Armor remain as is (very powerful), but that it only be found in supply drops. A sort of ‘risk for reward’ if you will. I feel that this would balance out the armor just a touch more than you have already done. Other than those few things I would like to see tested, you’ve exceeded my personal expectations. Great job Treyarch.

  • Leave the black out alone this is perfect I use to hate cod until this came out

  • Bye bye rainbowsix!!! Lol. I remember all you who team killed!!! Can’t wait to see you in black out!!! Welcome to my world now!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Totally enjoyed the beta. It felt like the developers where really answering the community, specially noted when pickup speed was increased and lvl 3 armor was tuned.

    Pending inquiries I can think of are the following:
    – Several perks are useless / a waste of inventory space, specially two come to mind:
    -Brawler: Totally useless as of now.
    -Squad link: Only makes you allies look pretty, other than this does nothing. One idea would be to reduce / eliminate friendly fire
    damage while squad link is up for the user in question (At least to me this makes a sense).
    – Model displacement on helicopter riding: when a squad rides on a chopper the characters riding on the sides will get their jaw displaced if they look around. (other players riding on the sides can see it.)

    Anyway, totally loved the beta. Can’t wait for the full release. Please keep up the amazing work you’ve done so far.

  • I love everything about the beta it’s one of the best game so far the only thing the I have a problem with it’s the graphics man we on 2018 it should be more detailed on that aspect I hope it’s better for the global lunch and another thing do not put futuristic guns or anything like that it will kill the game and please we need costumes your own characters

  • I wish I had the beta!!!

  • increase weapon spawns


    Recently, it has been mentioned by Treyarch that there will be an option for players to set a tap of “square” to pick up nearby loot vs. holding square if the player wishes for that setting instead. Of course, it has been speculated that this new setting would interfere in gunfights when the player wants to reload but instead picks up nearby loot. I say, why not ADD ANOTHER OPTION (for PS4 specifically) where a simple SWIPE of the TOUCHPAD would pick up loot? I feel like touch pad goes fairly unused in most games, but to me it seems like this can really be a good solution to the conundrum of this button configuration.

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