Trent Reznor, who it’s still weird to see referred to as an Academy Award Winning Composer, will be providing the theme tune for Call of Duty Black Ops 2. Both he and the FPS have come a long way from Quake, although I’ll leave it to you to decide in which direction each has been travelling. The news comes along with a trailer for the game that shows the villain for the first time. He has escaped from a place but doesn’t have any weapons but that doesn’t matter because he HAS TAKEN ALL OF THE BLOPS’ WEAPONS. That’s the plot. Oh, and it’s the future, so jetpack dives from space and baby AT-ATs.
Reznor had this to say about COD in an interview with USA Today:
I have always looked to that franchise as the cutting edge of what seemingly unlimited budgets and full-on not cutting any corners can do in the current day and age.
After talking about changes in the industry, mainly in terms of scale, he does acknowledge that indie games still exist and that CODBLOPS isn’t trying to be one. That’s good. I like to imagine he plays sad pixelly things as well.
As for the sound of the theme, it reflects the story.
What I learned in listening to the full story and the amount of effort that has gone into the back story and the characters and the full preparation there is a lot of reservation and angst and sense of loss and regret and anger bubbling under the surface. So it didn’t make sense to have a gung ho, patriotic feeling theme song. It has to feel weighty. There is a lot of remorse and apprehension here. So choosing to arrange it a bit more with guitars and drums and aggressively sounding, that struck a tone with them.
Angst, loss, regret and anger. That’s the Call of Duty I’ve come to know.
Let’s go back in time.