Activision’s logo is conspicuously absent from the start-up screen of the Call of Duty: Vanguard alpha, which was made available to pre-load for PlayStation consoles on Monday.
Once downloaded, players can view the alpha’s start-up sequence, which includes the logos of the various developers making the game.
As first reported by Charlie Intel and since confirmed by VGC, Activision’s name only appears in the legally required copyright small print at the end of the intro.
Here's the Call of Duty: Vanguard Alpha start up screen.— CharlieIntel - Call of Duty News (@charlieINTEL) August 23, 2021
Very interesting to note...Activision logo does not appear. Only shows Activision at the end for copyright. Every other CoD game starts up with Activision's logo. pic.twitter.com/VN8vGrpSHH
While Activision’s logo traditionally features prominently in Call of Duty marketing, it was also noticeably absent from Vanguard’s debut trailer, which released last week.
Vanguard is the company’s first major product announcement since the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a lawsuit against Activision Blizzard last month accusing it of failing to handle sexual harassment and discrimination complaints.
The game’s marketing has been perceived as an attempt to distance Activision Blizzard‘s biggest brand from the numerous allegations of wrongdoing aimed at the company, which have seriously tarnished its reputation.
But asked about the decision to omit the Activision logo from the game’s debut trailer, a company spokesperson claimed the move was a creative one.
“Call of Duty has continued to expand into an incredible universe of experiences,” they said. “This was a creative choice that reflects how Vanguard represents the next major installment in the franchise.”
The PlayStation-exclusive Call of Duty: Vanguard alpha test will begin on August 27 at 10am PT / 1pm ET / 6pm BST and run for 48 hours.
Participants will be able to try out Vanguard’s new Champion Hill mode, which has previously been described as ‘Gunfight Battle Royale’.
Champion Hill is a progression of the small squad multiplayer mode Gunfight introduced with 2019’s Modern Warfare, now extended to a large map split into sections, with multiple teams battling to be the last squad standing.
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