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Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s beta coming in August, with a sneak preview chance through Comcast

Fans can register for a chance to play in one of eight USq1 cities

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Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 - Ajax holding up a barrier and firing a pistol Treyarch/Activision
Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s beta will arrive in August, but players in eight large U.S. cities will get a chance to see it before then thanks to another partnership between Activision and cable provider Comcast.

Beginning today, fans can register for a sweepstakes-like opportunity to be invited to Comcast’s Xfinity Store to play the game, beginning in July. The promotion will take place in Washington, Boston, Philadelphia, Houston, Seattle, Chicago, Indianapolis and Atlanta over the coming months. Registration begins today, and the first event will be held in mid-July, Comcast’s Mark Cruz said.

A news release from Comcast confirmed that Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s multiplayer beta would be available to the general public sometime in August. The game itself launches Oct. 12 on PlayStation 4, Windows PC and Xbox One.

“We look at the sweepstakes as an opportunity for fans who didn’t make it to E3 to also get a preview of the game,” Cruz said. “For us, we thought it was important to get as many people as possible to play the multiplayer beta, so we spread it across the country as best as we could based on Activision’s ability to provide the experience as well.”

Cruz expects that about 40 will end up invited to the private events at the Xfinity stores, with every winner allowed to invite a friend. The times and dates will vary by market location.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 got a showcase presentation at PlayStation’s E3 news conference on Monday, but no beta date was announced. However, Sony and Activision did announce that 2015’s Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 would be available to subscribers of the PlayStation Plus service for the next month.

Last year, Comcast and Activision partnered to bring Call of Duty: WWII’s multiplayer beta to Comcast subscribers without pre-ordering the game. It’s part of an ongoing effort by the cable provider to align itself with esports brands and top performers to showcase its cable internet products.

Gordon Hayward, a professional basketball player for the Boston Celtics and a noted esports enthusiast, will participate in the sweepstakes event in Boston, Cruz said. Other notable persons may guest star in other locations but Cruz could not yet confirm who they might be.

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