Five years on, Call of Duty fan convention is returning

Top-selling gaming franchise will be celebrated in championship event capping a year-long tournament

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 16 June, 2016, 5:30pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 16 June, 2016, 5:30pm

Activision is re-enlisting in “Call of Duty XP”. After a five-year hiatus, the video game publisher is organising a second edition of the fan-focused convention to celebrate the popular military shooter franchise.

The three-day event will host this year’s Call of Duty championship. The e-sports extravaganza will serve as the culmination of a year-long tournament featuring 32 teams vying for a prize pool of US$2 million in competitive Call of Duty: Black Ops III matches.

“Call of Duty XP” will be held from September 2-4 at the Forum in Inglewood, California. The event is expected to draw 10,000 fans.

“We wanted to seize the opportunity to bring back a great fan event and make it bigger,” says Eric Hirshberg, chief executive of Activision Publishing. “We’re going to have what’s sure to be our biggest championship ever for our Call of Duty World League.”

“Call of Duty XP” will feature the unveiling of the multiplayer modes from the upcoming entries Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered.

Activision will also bring Call of Duty to life with such real-world activities as a paintball battle modelled after the Nuketown map from Black Ops III, and a laser tag course inspired by the zombie mode from Infinite Warfare.

At the convention, Sony will debut a PlayStation VR experience that will recreate the sensation of sitting in the pilot seat of the Jackal fighter jet from Infinite Warfare.

“It’ll be a celebration of the franchise – past, present and future,” says Hirshberg. “It’s a good time for us to invite our fans, celebrate the championships and go big.”

The inaugural “Call of Duty XP” event was held in 2011 and drew more than 6,000 fans to a five-hectare compound in Playa Vista, California.

“I think a lot has changed,” says Hirshberg. “Obviously, e-sports was already gaining a lot of momentum, but so much more has happened globally and with our Call of Duty World League.”

Call of Duty continues to be the top-selling gaming franchise. Activision said earlier this year that more than 250 million copies of Call of Duty have been sold since the series debuted over a decade ago.