Angry man shootyblams - that most noble of sports - are surprisingly complex business. To an outsider, it might seem like a simple matter of pointing your perpetually enraged avatar in a direction and pulling the trigger - practically killing with your mind, except your mind is a gun - but sometimes there are other factors to consider. Loadout, map, and how best to demean your generally reasonable foes with hurtful language, sure, but also things of a more sinister nature. Yeah, I'm talking about lag. Peer-to-peer connections topple, empires fall. What's, say, a Call of Duty game to do? Yep: give up and get cancelled. No wait, sorry. Dedicated servers.
Speaking with NowGamer, Infinity Ward's Mark Rubin explained that Call of Duty: Ghosts is going all-in with dedicated servers.
“We did mention dedicated servers on Xbox One. One thing I can say is we're also doing dedicated servers on PC. So PC will be all dedicated servers, all of it."
It's not just about keeping games silky and quick, though. Actually, that barely seemed to be at the forefront of Rubin's mind at all. Instead, for better or worse, his principle goal is apparently secret patches.
“Basically the overall reasoning behind it all is we're always updating the games, even whether the community knows it or not. We're making changes that they don't know about because we want to see the changes happen without [affecting] peoples sort of free perceptions on what they think has happened, so sometimes we stealth in changes to design and see how they react.”
I suppose when you're working with a community that would rather fire off death threats than newly nerfed bullets, you've got to get them to actually try various changes one way or another.
Still though, the promise of dedicated servers is an encouraging one. Taken with other recent soundbites, it's enough to make me believe that Infinity Ward might actually be giving PC the top-to-bottom best version of its modern military megalith. Not that it means all that much to me since I may or may not actually end up playing it, but the more high-quality PC ports, the better. And if anyone can lead the charge on a trend, it's Activision's mighty, multi-billion dollar winner of all the breads. So yeah, optimism sorta!