Activision Announce Call Of Duty Convention

This could be you! Just imagine trainers poking out of the bottom of the trousers.

Ye Gods. Activision has announced Call of Duty XP 2011, a convention for Call of Duty fans taking place in Los Angeles on September the 2nd and 3rd of this year. Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg cheerily admits to the event being based on Blizzard’s yearly Blizzcon and says that it will allow CoD fans to “feel like you stepped into the game.”

I actually groaned as I was reading all this. The thought of finding myself in twelve acre convention centre filled with six thousand hardcore Call of Duty fans has a comparable effect on my testicles as salt has on slugs. Then again, as much as I enjoy the image of twelve Activision higher-ups discussing how to extricate me from my grotty bedsit, this convention isn’t for me. It’s for people who want to (among other things) eat at a recreation of Modern Warfare 2’s Burger Town, play paintball in a recreation of the same game’s Scrapyard multiplayer map and much more besides.

For the privilege of attending Blizzcon, Blizzard charges attendes $175 each. For Call of Duty XP 2011 Activision looked at this figure and then settled on $150, all of which Activision will be donating to Call of Duty Endowment, a charity organisation that helps American war veterans find jobs and receive training in civilian life.

So, hurrah for that. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about a franchise that so expensively glamorises the modern military then going on to put its name on a charity trying to spread awareness that (among other things) over 20% of US veterans between the ages of 18 and 24 are unemployed, but whatever. Here are just some of the rad things you’ll be able to get up to at Call of Duty XP 2011!

  • A Call of Duty® multiplayer tournament with over $1,000,000’s worth of cash and prizes to be won! 32 teams of 4 players will have to qualify prior to the event, but Activision say that “there will be additional ways to qualify on site”.
  • A real-life zipline!
  • The reveal of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3’s multiplayer component! Modern Warfare 3 is scheduled to ship around two months after the convention, on November 8th.
  • A real-life Modern Warfare 2 Burger Town to eat at!
  • A further reveal of Activision’s upcoming subscription-based Call of Duty: Elite service. You can read our own Alec’s thoughts on that here.
  • The Call of Duty® Armory, where attendees will be able to ogle the weaponry they have fondled for so many tens of hours online, for real.
  • A real-life recreation of The Pit, Modern Warfare 2’s training level
  • A real-life recreation of Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer map Scrapyard that you’ll be able to play paintball in.
  • Live music from “AAA artists”
  • And more!

I find myself wincing a bit at the fact that so many of those attractions relate to the last Infinity Ward Call of Duty game, with nothing at all (so far) from Black Ops, but hey. More attractions have yet to be announced.

So, what do we think, readers? Any takers? Tickets go on sale on Tuesday July 19th, according to the official FAQ.

EDIT: I’ve just noticed that the same FAQ states that “Desktop computers, laptops, consoles and electronic storage devices are not allowed inside the event.” Odd.


  1. brulleks says:

    “…it will allow CoD fans to “feel like you stepped into the game.” ”

    They’re going to shoot everyone who turns up then miraculously heal them as soon as they cower behind the nearest two-foot high wall?

    • Nemon says:

      And there will be corridors and linearity.

    • vimster says:

      I’d like to go just to see the 14 year-olds trying really hard to find exploits in the venue, get beneath the floor, inside a chair, etc.

    • Fumarole says:

      I’m curious about their invisible wall technology.

    • subedii says:

      I’m more interested in the conference speeches.

      Pop up, rattle off a clipped sentence, squat back down whilst the audience whoops at you.

    • wcaypahwat says:

      But half the attendees will be able to read their speech notes through the podium, anyway.

    • Nick says:

      Someone else will open all the doors for you.

    • Cyberpope says:

      someone better be at the entrance to open the door for me

      edit: god dammit Nick!

    • battles_atlas says:

      I’m looking forward to the moment four minutes in where you congratulate yourself for having torrented the ticket rather than pay for this exercise in existential debasement

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      Don’t forget the inevitable grenade spam that’ll be lobbed at the audience.

    • sg1969 says:

      You get some guy shouting “Oscar Mike” constantly in your face

  2. Teddy Leach says:

    What. The. Fuck. Is. This. Shit.

  3. Frabble says:

    Erm.. Okay?

    • westyfield says:

      Poor Dan Rivas, his comment has been sliding steadily down the page since half-five.

      Edit: and this reply failed. I wonder what’s up…

      • Kollega says:

        Yes, i’ve also noticed that. What gives, o mighty Hivemind?

        EDIT: Hmm… reply has also failed. Now i also wonder why is the comment section on the fritz.

  4. westyfield says:

    A convention for CoD fans?
    Not a convention for me,

  5. Icarus says:


  6. Valvarexart says:

    I’m not really sure that CoD fanboys are the kind of people I’m going to blend in with very well. First of all, they are probably extremist bandwagonist (I just made that up, but I think you understand), then secondly the majority are most likely teenagers and young men whose only goal is to be superior to other young men.
    Then there is the part where we attempt to have an intelligent videogame discussion with these young men. “Have you heard of Battlefield 3? I heard that they are running a new engine that is far superior to any other FPS engine…” I would be bound to tell the young men, and that would be bound to place me in a hospital or similar.

  7. nubbuka says:

    Will they provide camping spots free of charge?

    • Valvarexart says:

      I have to admit, that made me laugh.

    • nubbuka says:

      That’s why I’m here :P

    • Bhazor says:

      Call of Duty is possibly the last online shooter to allow spawn camping.
      link to

      That is amazing, it’s like playing Quake 3 again*. But not as fun.
      *I played Quake 3 for the first time last year. It is at least ten times more fun than the snipe happy COD games I’ve played.

    • Walsh says:

      Snipe happy? Someone hasn’t been playing CODBLOPS where sniper rifles are almost useless.

      RPS is clearly obligated to send a representative to this convention, I nominate Quinns.

    • Bhazor says:

      Sorry I meant as in constantly camping. Weapons just do so much damage and blind you so much that you can’t fight back and being blind sided means your dead.

  8. spruce says:

    Typically I’d be horrified at such a blatant trap arranged by a government to sterilise a portion of its population, but in this case, I think I’ll just look the other way.

    • Tsotsi says:

      Waste of money that’d be…the proportion of these people who’ll get a chance to procreate is tiny.

  9. Freud says:

    I’m sure it’s just a way to collect and observe them.

  10. James says:

    Will they charge you extra to see more of the convention?

  11. Joe Duck says:

    Just so that I get the idea, these people want to put ten thousand 13 year old Xbox gamers in one room with nothing to do but trash talk each other and the poor boothbabes with plastic machineguns.
    It should be illegal…

  12. TheApologist says:

    I do not find this event to be an appealing prospect.

  13. Hoaxfish says:

    Call of Duty XP 2011

    Call me when they announce Call of Duty Vista

    anyway… isn’t the “Call of Duty” experience… erm, joining the army?

  14. Schaulustiger says:

    Haha, nice joke RPS, you nearly got me, but you made it sound too ridiculous.

    It is a joke, right?


    • Teddy Leach says:

      Son… I think you should sit down.

    • nubbuka says:

      It is going to be…

      I can see the headlines now… “Lack of ambulances country wide due to Call of Duty convention Riot”

      Ah, the horror.

  15. Gundrea says:

    I hope there’s space to park my tank.

  16. DethonRells says:

    – “A real-life zipline!”

    Awwwwwww Yyyeeeeeaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh! brb, booking flight.

    • p4warrior says:

      Anyone may use the zipline. However, only Elite subscribers get to use a harness.

    • Jesse L says:

      RPS comments are the best on the internet.

  17. Xocrates says:

    I wonder for how long this exploitation of Call of Duty will remain viable.

    I have no particular love or hate for the games, but I simply do not believe that within the next 5 years the market won’t be so oversaturated and the brand so overexposed that the series won’t crash and burn or at least go through a major slump.

    Then again, FIFA and Madden seem to be going strong, so what do I know?

    • Kollega says:

      Yes, i also wonder about that. I mean, CoD brand just dosen’t seem sustainable. Guitar Hero was another cash cow for Activision, and where is it now?

    • BaronVonsnakPak says:

      to kollega:

      activision first had the tony hawk series which they ran into the ground, then guitar hero which they also ran into the ground, and now CoD.

      Theyre a one-trick pony, where the pony is still being saddled for rides even though it’s bloated and doesnt move.

    • Fierce says:

      Guitar Hero was never about the players. It was about riding the trend of masses of people willing to exchange their disposable income for plastic electronics (remember, this was during the Wii’s popularity splurge), plastic instruments and nostalgic rock and roll moments for as long as it lasted… and then the trend stopped lasting.

      MW -and remember, its more Modern Warfare than Call of Duty they’re exploiting- doesn’t have to be sustainable, it just has to make them as many SKUs, Bushels and Gobs of Money as possible before their cost/benefit analysis doesn’t add up.

      Then they’ll close the studios in the name of cost cutting and hard times, shutdown their “antiquated” MW2 server service because it isn’t compatible with Elite in 2013~2014, and blame it on Obama increasing taxes on corporations and the wealthy while laughing their way to the bank.

      You know, Business.

    • BrunoNZ says:

      BaronVonsnakPak said: “Theyre a one-trick pony, where the pony is still being saddled for rides even though it’s bloated and doesnt move.”

      I just got an image of Bobby Kotick as Rooster Cogburn, riding that little black pony until it dropped dead.

  18. nullward says:

    Does it make me a games bigot to say that physically “stepping into” a convention hall full of several thousand strangers who share in common only a love of virtually murdering each other with realistic military hardware is a slightly disturbing concept?

    No hate for the game, I’m not not sure the theme works for a convention. It sounds like a military theme park.

  19. jealouspirate says:

    Oh dear.

    I wonder if the US Army will be there recruiting. Being in the military is just like FPS with better graphics, right?

    • Stellar Duck says:

      But does the military run at 60 fps? If not, it’s clearly not worth playing.

    • Stromko says:

      Unfortunately the human eye can only perceive about 20 FPS, so it’s pretty shitty frames.

    • BaronVonsnakPak says:

      not to mention that leveling is a BITCH.

    • Stellar Duck says:

      Yes, I can attest the levelling sucks. I got drafted into a nine month trial account and never even got past private, let alone unlocking very many weapons.
      And some of the hardcore players, especially those who got to sergeant were really abusive. Sadly there is no mute function.

      The mud engine is ace though.Never saw better mud in my life.

  20. p4warrior says:

    Which platforms will be available at Call of Duty XP?

    Xbox 360 is the exclusive console partner of Call of Duty XP.

  21. Om says:

    Another day, another mention of Quinn’s testicles…

  22. Unaco says:

    It’s not for me… the convention or the games. But I’m not going to get up in arms and start whining about it. Much more productive, constructive things I can do. Fair play to them, I say… If they can get the numbers in, and the people want to attend, should the complaints and thoughts of those who don’t want to attend or play the games really matter to them? They know their market, they know their ‘demographic’, and they seem to be quite successful at making the BIG games… The release of MW2 was like the release of a Hollywood movie. They’ve certainly done a lot to bring gaming to the mainstream, to the masses. The great unwashed masses, they may be, but still.

    • subedii says:

      For someone with more productive things to do, I think yours is actually the longest post here.

    • JerreyRough says:

      Well it only takes seconds to write that much, unless you type one word a minute.

    • subedii says:

      Which applies just as much to everyone else.

      Just sayin’.

  23. Kazang says:

    Nuke it from orbit, it’s the only way to be sure.

  24. mlaskus says:

    Wrong again Quintin! I do not wear trainers, nor trousers for that matter.

  25. Aemony says:

    Is this some sort of Zoo like facility, where CoD fans are confined within enclosures, displayed to the public? Because I’d pay a ridiculous unspecified amount of money to visit said facility and watch the daily mundane lives of said fans.

  26. Rush Ton says:

    It makes sense. Its not for me but I know alot of people who would go. Call of duty has a very large fanbase so should easily be able to fill and event like this.

  27. Kollega says:

    Thoughts in order of appearance:

    Thought #1: “Oh my goodness, thousands upon thousands of Call of Duty fanboys gathered in one place, trash-talking eachother and comparing the size of their man-parts? That cannot possibly be good!”

    Thought #2: “What?! Activision donating money to a charity? If that’s their attempt to repair their reputation, shouldn’t it be rubbed in our faces much more harder to have any sort of effect?”

    Thought #3: “Anyone want to gather up a few thousand people, dress them all in Russian Army uniforms with appropriate weapons and vehicles, and crash into the place? Sounds like fun…”

  28. onehitter says:

    “Who are the ad wizards who came up with that one?”

  29. Frank says:

    At first I thought you meant a new game
    Activision announce “Call of Duty: Convention”
    I would have read that article.

  30. PiP999 says:

    As much as I love playing CoD, I hate 80% of its loud mouth, sexist, racist, immature, egocentric playerbase, so to heck with this convention… Heck I say!

    Also, about the tournament: “there will be additional ways to qualify on site”… oh my…

  31. gganate says:

    I am completely baffled by this. The Call of Duty series is completely devoid of personality. It’s multiplayer is repetitive and badly-designed. “Let’s reward the best players with an AI controlled helicopter and air strikes!” How the hell have they made a franchise out of this jingoistic bland fest?

  32. Theodoric says:

    They should’ve held it 5 years ago when the franchise wasn’t crap.

  33. Leelad says:

    Sounds utterly utterly awful.

    Surely the devs of Call of Scriptathon will be considering walking after this announcement…i’d be banging on Respawn’s door begging to code for cock after this.

  34. JerreyRough says:

    Here, I’ll summarize all the comments:


    Well, I guess I’m not surprised. We are the neglected platform. But it saddens me when I see all these people proclaiming to be better than CoD fanboys (indirectly), yet hate harder than normal CoD players. The people that I know that play CoD play all kinds of games, and they are all nice people. Because, if you look at how many “14yo” trash talkers there are, and then look at how many people actually talk, its the same on any PC game ratio-wise. At least on random public servers (private/non-regular servers don’t have that problem console and PC alike usually).

  35. Mordsung says:

    Just when you thought Blizzcon was the largest gathering of pathetic human beings in history, Activision goes and shows up their own studio.

  36. Dreamhacker says:


  37. pagad says:

    I bet there’s nothing at all related to the first couple CoD games.

  38. Stellar Duck says:

    What is a AAA band? Or is it a band called AAA?

    Because, surely, I’ve never heard the expression AAA band before.

  39. Araxiel says:

    I’m not saying that I wouldn’t find that fun. But it’s just not worth it. A) I’m living in good ol’ Europe, and B) 150 is quite the sum. Also, I rather play with my friends some paintball wher there is actually teamplay and that know a little bit how to behave than with a bunch of unknown kiddies that have no idea of the word “teamplay”. Also, I went down a zip-line already a couple of times. Yes, it can be a fun thing. And yes, it’s fun to pretend to have a gun and shot while sliding down in a height of 10 meters of the ground. But it’s probably not fun if you see every single yerk doing the same thing in some steams and hot hall.
    About Burger Town. Well, I can eat a burger anywere and just because there’s some scenery around it does not make that junk anymore tasty.
    And fingering the guns: Well, I’m already happy that I will not have to use a G36 since there’s no conscription in Germany from the 1st of July on. (I shouldn’t say that out loud, it’s still 30th and thus they’re still allowed to drag me to the military today).
    I just have the feeling that this convention is for the typical, heck, stereotypical Call of Duty fan. Somebody that has no idea what the heck is going on there in the real world and whose biggest worries in the recent past was that his PS3 Network was down. Also, his other favourite games and best games of all times are Gears of War, God of War, Gears of War 2, Killzone 3, Halo and Codblops and the words “Witcher” and “Amnesia”, “Red Orchestra”, “Age Of Empires”, “Stronghold”, “Magicka” and “Morrowind” sound like diseases to him.

  40. Big Murray says:

    Can we organise a strategic nuke for that day?

  41. trooperdx3117 says:

    My god there will be an overload of “lol fag noob” used in one location and will cause a quantum singularity centred in the convention centre. God damnit acitvision first $15 map packs and now end of the universe, when will it end!

  42. DrSlek says:

    “All attendees must be over 18 years of age”


    This is glorious!

  43. mseifullah says:

    Not interested in this at all.

    What’s kind of weird is that I remember being at Quakecon — that’s a combination of “Quake” and “convention” for the unlearned — with the first ever public hands-on of the original Call of Duty game many years ago. And now,many years and sequels later, the game that debuted at another title’s convention gets its own.

    The difference here is that Quakecon started as a free event organized by fans and still remains free today (with some optional paid stuff added in now). This convention was started by Activision and strikes me as a money-grab, not as a fan-service.

  44. thebigJ_A says:

    Just what I want to go to, a dude-bro douchebag convention.

  45. Shodex says:

    “A real-life recreation of Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer map Scrapyard that you’ll be able to play paintball in.”
    I’ll go if they let me call in rabid dogs and attack helicopters.

    “A real-life zipline!”
    Will it be just like the one from Black Ops? Will I get shot half way across it?

  46. MD says:

    “A real-life recreation of Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer map Scrapyard that you’ll be able to play paintball in.”

    That’s actually awesome! I’ve never played MW2, but I would totally go for this if it was one of my old favourites like Dust2 or Q3DM6. Not sure how they’d pull off jumppads though…

  47. Zogtee says:

    Well, they’re obviously trying to transition this into an “e-sports” game/happening that can be compared to Starcraft 2, but I can’t see that happening. Activision doesn’t really seem to be encouraging this sort of thing. They’re more into churning out sequels and sprinkling them with overpriced DLC. It’s what killed Guitar Hero and I think they’ll do it to CoD as well. They squeeze something dry, Bobby Kotick consumes it the dead husk, and they move on.

    I really enjoyed the multiplayer in Modern Warfare 1, btw. I got into the whole “unlock this and that” routine and played it quite a lot. Then Modern Warfare 2 hit and was like “Dude, you get to unlock all that shit again! Yay!”. I played for a while, but lost interest, because it felt like I had already done all this in MW1. Then Black Ops hit and was like “Dude, you get to unlock all that shit a third time! Yay!”. I admit that I got swept up by the release hype and bought it, but I’ve barely touched it since.

  48. Eukatheude says:

    The new RPS writer has to go there. Think of it as a rite of passage.

  49. shoptroll says:

    The money might be going to charity, but goodness does Activision shamelessly acknowledge that they’ve got their fans wallets by the balls. Compared to some of the other big-name fan conventions, the MasterCard parody almost writes itself.

    Penny Arcade Expo 3-Day Pass: $55
    QuakeCon: $0
    Call of Duty XP: $150
    BlizzCon: $175
    Gleefully exploiting your customer’s wallets? Priceless

    Admittedly, they might be keeping prices high, at least in the case of BlizzCon, to keep attendence in check for the venue size.