Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 FAQ — Release date, platforms, locations, time period, and more

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 campaign, multiplayer, and zombies reveal screenshots.
(Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

It has been more than a decade since a Call of Duty title was revealed on an Xbox showcase stage. Call of Duty publisher Activision had a decade-long marketing agreement with PlayStation that limited how Xbox was able to market the ongoing franchise. Not only has the marketing deal between Activision and PlayStation expired, but Xbox has successfully closed the deal to purchase the publisher and studios behind Call of Duty for a record-breaking $70 billion. 

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 is the first title to be released since the marketing deal was exhausted, ushering in a new era of Call of Duty as an Xbox property. The benefits of the PlayStation marketing deal like console-specific Operators and extra Create-a-Class loadout slots are now a thing of the past. Call of Duty fans can look forward to a more equal gaming experience regardless of where they play.

What is Call of Duty: Black Ops 6?

What is Call of Duty: Black Ops 6?

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 is an immersive blockbuster game with spy action thriller and first-person shooter gameplay developed by Treyarch Studios with support from Raven Software and published by Activision. It is the sixth entry in the Black Ops subseries, the first of which launched in 2010.

In the timeline of narrative events, Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 takes place after Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 and before Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, while following up on a substory that was introduced during Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and referenced in flashbacks of the 1980s during Black Ops 2. 

The game is broken down into three main gameplay modes: Single-player campaign, competitive multiplayer, and cooperative Zombies. Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 is built upon the shared engine that was the unifying factor for the Call of Duty franchise starting with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022), and is expected to require the Call of Duty HQ launcher currently housing for Modern Warfare 2, Modern Warfare 3, and Warzone. It will be the first Black Ops title to be included with the launcher.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 release date

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will launch on October 25, 2024. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

When is the release date for Call of Duty: Black Ops 6?

You will be able to play Black Ops 6 on October 25, 2024.

Historically, Call of Duty titles have typically launched on the first or second Tuesday of November. That has changed a couple of times in recent years, however. Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will take an earlier release date, much like some of its predecessors. Previous Call of Duty titles have provided players with an early access period to the campaign as a reward for preordering. There has not yet been any confirmation that Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will offer that preorder benefit.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 campaign gameplay

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 campaign reveal. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

What is Call of Duty: Black Ops 6's campaign gameplay like?

The campaign for Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 is a single-player first-person-shooter experience set after the events of Black Ops Cold War and tied to flashbacks of the 1980s from Black Ops 2. Iconic Black Ops characters Frank Woods and Russell Adler return to the series, while new allies Troy Marshall and Jane Harrow flesh out the player's support team. Themes of conspiracies, paranoia, and a blend of history and fiction will flesh out this spy action thriller.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will continue with the Safehouse hub that was introduced in Black Ops Cold War, allowing players to select missions, learn about allies, solve puzzles, and collect lore or upgrades before continuing with the story. This is a change of pace from the Modern Warfare subseries' more linear storytelling method. 

Missions will take players across the globe, through the harsh Russian Tundra, across Middle Eastern deserts, and through Southern Europe and the US, all without the support of the government's military. This is due to a CIA infiltration conspiracy that has made a fugitive of Adler. Set in the early 1990s, Black Ops 6 will put players right in the middle of political upheaval and unrest, and require the team to go rogue and to work together while trusting no one. 

While many attribute the Black Ops series exclusively to Treyarch Studios, the development of the campaign for Black Ops 6 was helmed by Raven Software. The studio also previously provided lead development for the campaign of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. Every single Activision studio had a hand in bringing Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 to fruition.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 multiplayer

Omnimovement is a major overhaul to the movement system in Call of Duty. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

Is Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 multiplayer?

Yes. The campaign for Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 is single-player only, but there are two multiplayer options. Traditional multiplayer is a combination of maps and gameplay modes ranging from Team Deathmatch to Hardpoint offering free-for-all gameplay, 6v6 team gameplay, and 2v2 strike modes. Black Ops 6 will also include a cooperative multiplayer mode in Zombies.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 PvP multiplayer

The PvP multiplayer environment for Call of Duty titles treads a fine line annually between keeping the core experience that players know and love in check, while simultaneously adding something new to keep it fresh and engaging. For Call of Duty: Black Ops 6, Treyarch Studios has dared to hone in on movement, redefining the way Operators and players engage with their surroundings and each other in a variety of new ways. 

The largest change is the introduction of Omnimovement, a new system that improves and redefines character movement to be more realistic and seamless. With Omnimovement, players are no longer limited to sliding forward or dolphin diving out in front of enemies. Instead, they can now sprint, slide and dive in any direction. Successfully diving backward can allow a player to feel like their favorite 90s era action star, hurling backward to land on your back while blasting at a foe with a shotgun or other weapon.

Along with Omnimovement, Treyarch has introduced an all new way to take cover with Supine Prone. Gone are the days of laying prone on your belly and being spotted by enemies as your entire Operator spins like a top while you look around. Instead, Supine Prone allows the player to rotate while in the prone position, giving more freedom and tactical flexibility to look around and engage with surroundings without leaving the safety of cover.

Multiplayer will launch with 16 new maps. 12 core 6v6 maps and four Strike maps available for 2v2 or 6v6 modes. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

Treyarch Studios took the lead on the development of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 multiplayer. Players can look forward to 16 brand-new maps available on day one, with 12 of those maps being exclusive to 6v6 modes, while four are designed for small map lovers on Strike modes with 2v2 or 6v6 variants.

Oft requested features Classic prestige and theater mode will also be returning to Call of Duty: Black Ops 6. With the introduction of seasonal content and battle passes, prestige mode had previously been changed to only allow players to reach a certain level, with the caps being raised incrementally with post-launch seasonal content. 

There was no risk or reward to this prestige system, as players only needed to commit time (or double XP tokens) to reach the max level cap each season. Classic prestige will require players to give up their progress on weapons and challenges in order to start their level count over again and move up in rank. There will be 10 classic prestige ranks available at launch, with a master prestige consisting of 1000 levels to follow up on once you complete the classic challenges. A unique and valuable set of rewards will be available to those who hit the cap of prestige master.

Theater mode will give players the chance to relive their action-hero moments as they work their way through ranks and challenges.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 Zombies

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will see the return of round-based zombies on two maps at launch. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

Treyarch really seems to be honing in on calls from the Call of Duty community for multiplayer modes. Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will return to the classic round-based zombies mode for cooperative multiplayer. A group of 4 players can squad up together to take on increasingly difficult waves of zombies on two brand-new maps, Terminus and Liberty Falls. 

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 platforms

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 campaign screenshot. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

What platforms is Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 coming to?

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will be available globally on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC. PC players will be able to access Black Ops 6 via Battle.net, the Microsoft Store, and Steam.

Xbox's acquisition of Activision Blizzard King was met with intense scrutiny by global regulatory bodies, who expressed concern that Call of Duty would become an Xbox-exclusive title to foreclose on Sony's PlayStation consoles. To acquiesce to these concerns, Microsoft signed multiple decade-long contracts with Sony, Nintendo, NVIDIA, and Ubisoft to bring Call of Duty to multiple platforms. 

While it is uncertain when Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will be included on Ubisoft and NVIDIA streaming services, or the Nintendo Switch. However, we do know that the game will be released simultaneously across Xbox One and Series X|S families of consoles, PlayStation 5 and 4 consoles, and PC via Battle.net, the Microsoft Store, and Steam. 

Black Ops 6's inclusion in the Microsoft Store is a first for modern Call of Duty releases, and it may indicate that Black Ops 6 may be one of the first Call of Duty titles to embrace Xbox's Play Anywhere program. This would allow PC players to unlock Xbox achievements without playing on the console. The PC port of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 was developed by Beenox.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 install size

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 reveal screenshots

(Image credit: Activision)

What is the install size of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6?

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 is currently listed with an approximate file size of 309.85 GB. The game will require the Call of Duty HQ launcher, which also houses Call of Duty: Warzone, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. The inflated file size is how much space the game will require if all other elements of Black Ops 6 plus the previous games and Warzone are installed simultaneously. Players can opt to delete some segments of each Call of Duty game if they are not playing them. Activision has also confirmed that the file size will be reduced by launch.

Xbox has recently announced three new additions to the Xbox console line up, with a special edition Galaxy Xbox Series X hitting retail shelves with 2 TB of storage. You may need that space if you're a Call of Duty fan, as the anticipated file size for Black Ops 6 is listed as 309.85 GB on the Xbox store. The listed install size is an approximation that assumes the player has the Call of Duty launcher installed with all elements of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, Modern Warfare 3, and Warzone installed along with Black Ops 6. 

Activision has confirmed that the final install size for Black Ops 6 will be adjusted down by launch, and players can choose to uninstall certain modes if they are not actively playing them. This includes the choice to uninstall each game's campaign, multiplayer, or cooperative elements like Special Ops, DMZ, and Zombies or Warzone.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 and internet connectivity

(Image credit: Activision)

Will Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 require an internet connection?

Yes. A large portion of Call of Duty is online multiplayer, but even the single player campaign will require an internet connection to play. Call of Duty utilizes streaming of high-resolution textures to compress the game's file size. Therefore, Black Ops 6 require an internet connection to stream assets that are not stored locally.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 and Xbox Game Pass

Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 features returning characters and new faces, alike. (Image credit: Activision, Xbox)

Is Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 on Game Pass?

Yes! Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will be available on Day One for subscribers of Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass, and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Xbox Game Pass Core members will not have access to Call of Duty: Black Ops 6, however.

Subscribers of Game Pass for Console or Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will have access to the full Digital Cross-Gen Bundle of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 on Xbox consoles, while PC Game Pass subscribers will have access to the PC Standard Edition of the game in the Microsoft Store. The Game Pass edition of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 will provide subscribers access to preorder benefits, including the Woods Operator Pack and Open Beta Early Access.

Game Pass subscribers who want to utilize their subscription to play Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 are limited to the Xbox console or Microsoft store version of the game. Those looking to play on PlayStation consoles, via Battle.net, or on Steam will need to purchase a copy of Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 in order to do so. 

Cole Martin
Writer

Cole is the resident Call of Duty know-it-all and indie game enthusiast for Windows Central. She's a lifelong artist with two decades of experience in digital painting, and she will happily talk your ear off about budget pen displays.