Screenshot of a camouflaged sniper from a “Call of Duty” game.
Activision is looking to snipe monthly fees from players with “Call of Duty: Elite.” (Photo Credit: CC BY-ND/ATKR/Fotopedia)

Online multi-player first-person shooter fans who love the “Call of Duty” series should expect to pay more for their full metal carnage, reports GamePro. “Call of Duty: Elite,” a monthly subscription service, is currently preparing for beta testing phase and is accepting summer applicants. Speculation is that the service will cost less than $7.99 per month and will debut late 2011.

Activision eager to shake their ‘CoD: Elite’ moneymaker

Considering the massive popularity of the monthly subscription model for massively multi-player online role-playing games (MMORPGs) like “World of Warcraft,” it should come as no surprise that video game company Activision has decided to optimize the monetization model for the online multi-player FPS, one of the most popular PC and console gaming genres. Keeping gamers locked into the “Call of Duty” universe is very much in line with current market gaming strategy, argues Activision’s VP of Digital Business, Jamie Berger.

“In an always-on world, the competition for our players’ time has exploded,” he told Wired. “Online interactivity and community is critical for us to face that world. It’s what sets apart games with growing audiences from really great games struggling to find an audience.”

The US that loves ‘Black Ops’ will go ‘Elite’

Activision has already confirmed that “Call of Duty: Elite” will work with the game “Call of Duty: Black Ops,” which in February became the best-selling video game in U.S. history, according to NPD research. Over 30 million people play one of the “Call of Duty” games online each year, spending over 170 hours each year doling out hot video lead.

The beauty of “Elite,” suggests Activision, is that “Call of Duty” fans won’t have to run out and buy another $60 game. On the contrary, “Call of Duty: Elite” is not a new game at all, but an online social network extraordinaire that allows players to use various chapters from the “Call of Duty” saga. It should prove to be an intoxicating community for FPS online multi-player fans, while serving as a “Holy Grail” for Activision, suggests analyst Bill Harris of the blog Dubious Quality.

How ‘Call of Duty: Elite’ works

GamePro points out that “CoD: Elite” will be much more than leader boards and player-versus-player matchmaking. The “Elite” site will reportedly break down into four categories:

Career: Where total analysis of your play style and weapon choices happens, as well as intensive play map details. If you think you’re an FPS pro but haven’t seen what ‘Elite’ can do, reconsider your professional status.

Connect: Social media for “Call of Duty” fanatics. Chat, join groups, share highlight reels and simply go crazy.

Compete: FPS matchmaking done the way eHarmony does dating. Expect major firepower, not major halitosis.

Improve: Pump up your “Call of Duty” game with loads of tips.


Call of Duty: Elite:

Dubious Quality:



‘Call of Duty: Elite’ Legend of Karl trailer (Note: Contains video game violence)

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