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How Call of Duty went from PC to Esports

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Call of duty is a hugely popular first person shooter designed for single player and online multiplayer campaigns. The game allows the player to be transported to the times of the most historic wars, starting with WW2-focused games in 2003 developed for Microsoft Widnows, and progressively moving towards the more recent conflicts such as the Cold War, and even beyond that, into futuristic settings as well as the outer space as well as onto consoles such as the Xbox 360. 

The popularity of CoD esports can be traced back ot the very beginnings of the franchise with the first-ever appearance back in 2003 and even beyond that, with its origins in the Medal of Honour franchise and the MW3. The Invasion of Normanydy by the Allies in 1944 and life within the infantry are imitated by the computer controlled allied army, first-person navigation with multiple playable characers and classic cinematic set pieces – first ones of their kind among computer games. As one of the first of its kind Call of Duty aimed at breaking monotony of gameplay to create a unique experience and as such was devised to allow players to see all the sides of the battle.

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Starting in 2006 at the time of the release of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare players were able to play as individuals against the computer and in teams in online multiplayer games againt each other. In a way this set up paved the way or the games to enter the esports stage, although this wouldn’t happen until later. Well known extensions like ‘World at War, Modern Warfare 2 and 3, Black Ops and Black Ops II, and Ghosts were released over the years and with the release of Black Ops III  in November 2015, which contained a new esports structure for a Call of Duty World League. 

Not surprisingly, this took the spitrit of engagement and competition to another level, the prize pool of $3 million playing its part in helping attract new players as well as new fans. With the novelty of first ever Call of Duty tournaments and related rise in competitiveness, interest among the fanbase increased, leading to the rise of call of duty betting on the teams battling within the Call of Duty World League. Nowadays, the main betting markets revolve around multiplayer battles held during professional tournaments and range from more basic like betting on which team will win, to which team will win the whole tournament or even betting on individual players’ top scores.

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The World League has two divisions – Pro and Challenge – and each one feeds into what’s considered the grand finale of the season, the Call of Duty Championship. In order to get their ticket to the Championship, teams from across North America, Europe, and Australia & New Zealand comepte in regional competions throughout the year.

The Challenge Division was created for amateur players allowing teams to compete against one another in their local area network to build up their skills and granting them admission to the Championships. 

Call of Duty joined other popular PC games like Dota 2, League of Legends, and Starcraft II in transitioning to eSports and while the move solidified the game’s popularity, the very first released of the game, now classics, were incremental in that change takng place.

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