Call of Duty: Black Ops 2's "Boot Camp" mode, which lets players spar against a mix of human and low-level AI opponents, is just one design choice made to ease new players into the series' often crushing multiplayer experience, design director David Vonderhaar said in a recent VentureBeat interview.
The "Boot Camp" gametype is available within the game's Combat Training mode, which has been more integrated with the core multiplayer experience than in past Call of Duty titles. In "Boot Camp," two teams of three human and three AI players face off against one another. The mode will offer lessened challenge from the other multiplayer offerings — thanks largely to the tuned-down AI opponents — and will let players level up through rank 10, unlocking new options for the retooled Create-A-Class mode. After that, though, players are on their own.
"You don't have to be embarrassed because you're with other people who are also trying to figure the game out and get their aiming skills up and get prepared for the sharks," Vonderhaar said.
Vonderhaar described the mode as "just the tip of the iceberg" of methods for encouraging new players, also naming custom matches, other Combat Training modes and the ability to watch pro players' livestreams as other educational options.
"I'll be quite happy if a lot of people play and experience the huge depth and breadth this game has," Vonderhaar said. "I love to see new players come in and say, 'Okay, finally, I've got some spots here where we all get to participate in this system and see what all this crazy stuff is about.'"