David Vonderhaar responds to fan backlash over Black Ops Cold War League Play

Liam Mackay
black ops cold war league play

League Play has finally come to Black Ops Cold War, but some players are unimpressed with the system. David Vonderhaar, Treyarch’s Studio Design Director, has responded to the complaints.

Four months into Black Ops Cold War’s lifecycle, League Play has arrived. Players can now pit themselves against other players of their skill level in competitive 4v4 matches that will earn them various rewards and bragging rights.

However, when it was announced that League Play would be taking on Black Ops 4’s controversial system, players reeled back their excitement.

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Other competitive games such as Overwatch, Valorant, and even Apex Legends use their own versions of the Elo system, which rewards points based on wins and in-game performance. The more points you have, the higher your placement.

Call of Duty: World War 2 had a similar Elo system which many players still look back on as League Play’s peak following the original system in Black Ops 2. Instead of continuing Sledgehammer’s system into Black Ops 4, Treyarch designed an entirely new one.

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Players are separated into Division Ladders, where they must try and get more points than the other players in their ladder. Placing high will reward you with gems that you use to advance into the next Division.

bocw league play ranks

This system is now in Black Ops Cold War, and the community has been vocal about their disappointment.

Treyarch responds to League Play complaints

A fan asked David Vonderhaar, Treyarch’s Studio Design Director, why they chose Black Ops 4’s system for Cold War’s League Play.

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Responding on Twitter, Vonderhaar said that “this might be a good blog topic or Reddit article” and tagged Josh Torres, Treyarch’s Community Manager.

“I don’t have enough characters to do it justice. Keywords: Scope. Accessibility. Deadlines. Franchise.”

“We got some work to do [in my opinion] to evangelize how it works after we clean up some of the obnoxious bugs,” he concluded.

WW2 was developed by Sledgehammer Games, not Treyarch, so it’s likely they would need to develop an entirely new system if they wanted to have the classic Elo system in Cold War.

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With “scope” and “deadlines” being a deciding factor in why they kept BO4’s system, it appears developers didn’t have the time and/or resources to create a new, standard League Play system.

However, Vonderhaar has since conceded that WW2, not Black Ops 4, had the preferred League Play system.

This confirms that Treyarch devs are aware of fans’ disappointment in League Play and will be actively working to improve it.

It’s possible that we’ll see an update on the state of League Play in the coming weeks, so keep an eye on Charlie Intel for the latest news.

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Image Credit: Treyarch

About The Author

Liam is CharlieIntel's Editor who focuses on Call of Duty but also plays lots of fantasy RPGs or anything else in his massive gaming backlog. After graduating in Journalism from Edinburgh Napier University, Liam freelanced in games journalism before joining CharlieIntel in November 2020. You can contact Liam at [email protected].