Original Call of Duty working title was "MOH killer"

Former Infinity Ward artist Justin Thomas recalls development on 2003 FPS and competition with Medal of Honor.

Activision's Call of Duty franchise has not always been the industry-leading series that it is today. That designation was previously with Electronic Arts' Medal of Honor series. Speaking with MCV, former Infinity Ward artist Justin Thomas, who also worked on Medal of Honor: Allied Assault for EA, recalled the first days of what would become 2003's Call of Duty.

"The project was actually named 'MOH killer' until an official name could be found," Thomas said. "We were focused more on fun than success, with the idea that if it was fun, it would be successful. We were just going to make a great game, and do the things better than we did on previous projects. The great thing is that a team learns from previous projects."

Thomas explained that one of the challenges associated with building Call of Duty was making sure it did not too closely resemble the Medal of Honor series.

"The challenge was not to duplicate Medal of Honor," Thomas said. "We also wanted to find a way to tell different game play stories without having a 'super soldier.'"

This resulted in a game that featured a James Bond-like character, who undertook a secret mission to stop the Nazis during World War II. However, the game's design shifted when Infinity Ward decided to make a game from the point-of-view of three different characters--something that would define the series going forward.

The three-pronged narrative approach did not come from Infinity Ward, but rather Spark Unlimited, which at the time was working on Call of Duty: Finest Hour. This did not mean Infinity Ward would need to start over on Call of Duty, because it was able to adapt what it already created for the new concept.

"We took stuff that had been intended to be a part of that American spy storyline and we found new uses for them," ex-Infinity Ward designer Zied Rieke said. "Then we designed some missions that we could have only done as the British or the Russians."

Thomas and Reike are just two of numerous former Medal of Honor developers who would later move to Infinity Ward to work on the Call of Duty series.

Though Call of Duty is the top FPS series in 2013 and Medal of Honor is out of rotation indefinitely, EA has a formidable shooter lineup that includes Battlefield, Titanfall, and Star Wars: Battlefront.

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Discussion

205 comments
King_Wii
King_Wii

So if MOH was killed by COD then it's likely that Titanfall will kill COD since it's made buy the people who invented COD in the first place. Mind you it will likely take two or three releases for Titanfall to finish the deed but I dunno the future of shooters could and should be different. Throw in a bit of Destiny (the game) and you've got a bright future for the FPS genre.

XNEXUS666X
XNEXUS666X

MOH 2010 had a good campaign imo, multiplayer was the same old rehashed shit, but still, best net codes and hit damage to date. Better graphics than CoD too, Infinity Ward need to tame down that colour pallet, their games look like a god damn transvestite parade.

kerrman
kerrman

Come on, obviously MOH Killer was the intention..

I still remember when it came out and all I could think was how it was MoH but with a way better single player. And then CoD2 came out an shit all over MoH's multiplayer.

tightwad34
tightwad34

Not a surprise there. Knew they were dicks all along. Don't they know competition is good for the industry? No, greed is more important.

19James89
19James89

Medal of Honor Allied Assault urinates over any FPS past or present and Electronic Arts destroyed that franchise.

hellangel_boy
hellangel_boy

MOH was killed, but not mainly by COD, it was killed by EA. Great times with old MOH.

Whiskey3romeo
Whiskey3romeo

EA has finally killed MoH just like practically everything else they touch.  Dice needs to extricate itself from EA's evil grasp before they run Battlefield into the ground too.

Hurvl
Hurvl

Lol, back when both MoH and CoD were good. They sure managed to kill MoH and even did it again when it resurrected. After MoH: Ridiculous Subtitle (aka Warfighter), it died a second time.

chatphon
chatphon

good old-times the first CoD and United Offensive Expansion  absolute MoH killer , but CoD name these day... it's far difference from those better days.

Techtroll
Techtroll

"I don't like cod because I only play indie steam sale games" keep hating losers after all is said and done it will still be number one as usual

TheDarkSpot
TheDarkSpot

It's depressing to know that the "killer" idiocy already started back in 2003.

mkeezay22
mkeezay22

So I guess COD doesn't have characters who are freakin super soldiers right, obviously that's one artistic choice they didn't stick too.

I actually really liked COD for the first couple games, they were good shooters for the most part but I really don't like where the series has gone. Profits speak louder than drunk girls though and EA is at $1 beer night right now, just raking in the profits off a game they have kept the same for how many iterations now with very little if any real steps up in qulity, I used to think Battlefield was the shooter that would never sell out but battlefield 4 is the first in the main Battlefield series to not make a big jump in terms of quality and scale compared to it's predecessor, another case of profits ruing a great franchise, well greedieness for more profit really.

NTM23
NTM23

And in the end, it wasn't really better, but just as good as the best Medal of Honor had to offer. On consoles, there was Frontline, but more appropriately I think it was the original Call of Duty and Allied Assault, though the two Medal of Honor's came out a year prior, while Pacific Assault came out a year after Call of Duty in 04, which I don't think was quite as special. Actually, I thought the first Call of Duty played a little better than the Medal of Honor games, but other than that, they were about equal.

Stiler
Stiler

"We also wanted to find a way to tell different game play stories without having a 'super soldier.'"

That's funny, because that's exactly what the CoD game is. 

You are the all powerful one, your team mates can't hit the broadside of a barn, enemies focus you and only you, the entire npc soldiers (on your side) are nothing more then an illusion , they don't do anything but run their scripts and work as set piece designs. 

To see a game that does'nt use this "super soldier" AI look at games like the classic Rainbox 6 series (before Ubisoft got into it), Operation Flashpoint, Arma, , etc.

RenegadeGR
RenegadeGR

i liked the MOH better than COD (back when it was WWII titles)

DefconRave
DefconRave

Considering the sad state MOH is now, they succeeded in killing it. MW2 is one of the best fps campaigns i've played.

so_hai
so_hai

That just goes to show - CoD was a response to an existing game, and only had a goal to dislodge current software. This cannot be said about MoH, as this game tried to create something new: an historical shooter that was focused on realism and playability.

xukxj0nny
xukxj0nny

Call of Duty is different every year.  People that don't like it just say that. I mean yeah, Shooting a AR, Sub MG, Pistol, or what ever is the same. It is a FPS, theres not been a big improvement on graphics but there is only so much they can do with the tech they have. Not innovative? WAW w/ Zombies. Black ops 1 w/ even more zombies, different lvl up system and dolphin dive LOL, MW2 w/ spec ops, MW3 w/ spec ops & survival mode, Black ops 2 with updated zombies, a VERY good campaign, and pick 10 system, Then Ghosts w/ Aliens, freakin Aliens. thats gona be awesome. something similar to the pick 10 system but a little different, knee sliding and probably a lot more stuff we don't know about yet.. I have enjoyed COD. Some more then others but I'm not on here bashing it because it was the greatest game ever made. Games are made to be fun, not change the world. ppl should quit being so picky and just have fun playing something. If not COD, then find something else to enjoy and quit bashing stuff just b/c you don't like it.

joseanrodrigue9
joseanrodrigue9

is it just me or this does not make any sense what so ever people keep saying the new call of duty are garbage but how so all and i mean all call of duty  are the same exact game over and over so how that make them garbage 

Daian
Daian

Among military shooters maybe, not everything.

shreddyz
shreddyz

@Techtroll meh. really the "losers" are the people that buy it. The people that avoid cod are the real winners. confused are you?

platinumking320
platinumking320

@TheDarkSpot People were talking about Halo-Killers and GTA-Killers back then too. Get a lot industrial testosterone in one place and this stuff just tends to happen.

Hurvl
Hurvl

@TheDarkSpot I think it started with Cain and Abel, or even before that. Seriously, though, that meaning of the word killer and its usage is really old.

goldenlink64
goldenlink64

@so_hai The Video Game Industry thrives off of competition. Without that we wouldn't have half the games that exist today like Sonic the Hedgehog (Mario), Crash Bandicoot (Sonic), Skate (Tony Hawk), Marathon (Doom), Killzone (Halo), Saints Row (Grand Theft Auto) and now TitanFall (Call of Duty).

sortajan
sortajan

@so_hai "CoD was a response to an existing game, and only had a goal to dislodge current software"


because it's impossible to have more than one goal

Harbinger_CR
Harbinger_CR

@xukxj0nny I agree to some degree, CoD has a fanbase that loves the game, changing it too drastically might alienate the audience, although with the amount of $$$ they have they should be able to make the game look amazing and have some incredible things in it, but they don't and its not just because of the yearly releases.

so_hai
so_hai

@xukxj0nny It depends on what you consider different enough. People always say that Mario games are repetitive, but it's hard to see even two that are very much alike. CoD may have differences, but the nobody would claim that the fundamentals ever change because they really do not.

so_hai
so_hai

@joseanrodrigue9 It makes some sense to me, but it doesn't mean people shouldn't like them. Also, just because you do like them, it doesn't mean that they necessarily change.

HAZCHEM88
HAZCHEM88

@joseanrodrigue9  It makes them garbage since every game after MW1 was an exact copy of it and even used recycled buildings and parts of maps. So barely any development time goes into them and yet they make a shitload of money.

so_hai
so_hai

@sortajan @so_hai It is impossible to have more than one primary goal, and that primary goal was stated in the article.

TriggerManX97
TriggerManX97

@19James89 @Daian So what your telling us is that Medal of Honor: AA is miles ahead of every first person shooter ever including but not limited too Doom, Quake, Unreal Tournament, Halo, Goldeneye 007, Battlefield 1942, Metroid Prime, Wolfenstein, Half-Life 1&2, Counter Strike and Team Fortress 2. 

Ok, I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

Azugo
Azugo

@sortajan @so_hai I think the fact this article states that the developers dubbed the game "MoH killer" is reason enough to assume killing off Medal of Honour was their primary goal.

so_hai
so_hai

@sortajan @so_hai I don't know what their other goals were, you claimed they have other goals. The question is, where is your source for these other goals? All we know is that the developer has claimed they aimed to dislodge MoH. Any more than that is guessing.

sortajan
sortajan

@so_hai @sortajan let's assume i'm terrible at reading and have you show me exactly which part implied that it was their primary goal. i'll admit i'm wrong if i am.

sortajan
sortajan

@so_hai @sortajan @HAZCHEM88 @joseanrodrigue9 ignoring a point made by my comment, you said there are "far, far, far less BF games." that said, are you by any chance female? you argue a lot like some of my ex-girlfriends, that is to say without logic.


EDIT: i replied to myself again, fuck this noise

sortajan
sortajan

@so_hai @sortajan @HAZCHEM88 @joseanrodrigue9 actually CoD and Battlefield are close to even, CoD has more spinoffs (around six between the DS, Vita, PSP, and iOS. battlefield hasn't really branched out to handhelds.


EDIT: got an email telling me i replied to myself with this comment, fuck this website