Call of Duty: Escalation (Starring Trejo, Rooker, George A. Romero, Freddy Kruger, & Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

Call of Duty: Escalation (Starring Trejo, Rooker, George A. Romero, Freddy Kruger, & Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

Call of Duty – Three words almost universally despised by wives and girlfriends everywhere. Well ladies, things are about to get worse. If it seems your man has been picking the controller up less frequently as of late, I hope you enjoy it while it lasts. Coming May 3rd is the newest expansion for the latest Call of Duty game, Black Ops. This is the second such expansion released for the game, as First Strike is almost 3 months old already. I know a few people I play online with still haven’t bought the First Strike expansion, but personally I’m happy I did, as ‘Discovery’ has become my favorite map in the game. The new add-on is called Escalation.

Here is a quick synopsis:

As indicated by the retailer leak, the DLC will include four multiplayer maps: Hotel, set “on the roof of a Cuban luxury hotel and casino against the vivid backdrop of old Havana”; Convoy, which offers up “intense, close-quarters combat at the scene of an ambushed US military convoy”; Zoo, set in a derelict Soviet-era animal park; and Stockpile, which is set in a small Russian town that contains secret facilities housing weapons of mass destruction.

Also included in the Escalation pack is a new level for Black Ops’ zombie mode. Today’s announcement gave no details on the mode, other than that it will provide a “unique Zombies experience.” However, the previous retailer leak referred to the level as “Call of the Dead.”

Ok, so new maps are always nice, but what’s really grabbing me here is the “Call of the Dead” aspect of the game. Long has the Zombie section of the game been a favorite of mine, and it is in fact the reason I bought both Call of Duty: World at War and Call of Duty: Black Ops. And while it was fun, it was obviously never a real focus for the designers. That’s about to change. Here is the trailer for the ‘Call of the Dead’ section of the expansion…

As our esteemed Technical Editor likes to say: Holy crap.

Not bad at all. Here are 4 luminaries in the Horror/Sci-Fi genre, brought together to voice characters not for a full game, but just a downloadable expansion to the game. That is throwing your budget around. Just look at this cast:

- Michael Rooker made his name with a lot of geeks in Mallrats, however was already established in the horror community for a decade prior with the title role in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. And for the Zombie connection – he was in the first season of AMC’s The Walking Dead.

- Danny Trejo is one Mexican you don’t want to f–k with, or so he told us in Machete. Machete was of course a spin-off of Grindhouse, and Trejo has been in such classics as Maniac Cop 2, the From Dusk Till Dawn trilogy, and Rob Zombie remake of Halloween.

- Sarah Michelle Gellar is of course best known as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but has also appeared in horror movies like I Know What You Did Last Summer, The Grudge and Scream 2.

- Robert Englund has played Freddy Kruger over 50 times between the Nightmare on Elm Street movies and the TV show they inspired. Plus he has been in other movies like Wishmaster, Urban Legend, 2001 Maniacs, and Zombie Strippers! He is a horror icon.

And all of them helmed by the man most synonymous with Zombies – George A. Romero. If you somehow don’t know who Romero is…well, you’re just not a zombie fan. He is responsible for Night of the Living Dead and all of it’s seemingly thousands of sequels.


I’ll admit, on the last map pack download, I didn’t spend a ton of time on the Zombie stage, but this time around…I plan to.