Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

Rebecca’s War Dog of the Week: ‘Call of Duty’ gets a serious lookin’ SEAL dog

By Rebecca Frankel Best Defense Chief Canine Correspondent Call of Duty — the popular video game series featuring many, many different warzone scenarios — has a new game on the horizon: Call of Duty: Ghosts. In the official recently released trailer, an ethereal score swells against flashes of a post-apocalyptic terrain of vivid land- and ...

YouTube
YouTube
YouTube

By Rebecca Frankel

Best Defense Chief Canine Correspondent

Call of Duty -- the popular video game series featuring many, many different warzone scenarios -- has a new game on the horizon: Call of Duty: Ghosts. In the official recently released trailer, an ethereal score swells against flashes of a post-apocalyptic terrain of vivid land- and seascapes. It is the new, new world of modern warfare. Within the first few seconds a new character is revealed -- a SEAL team service dog.  

By Rebecca Frankel

Best Defense Chief Canine Correspondent

Call of Duty — the popular video game series featuring many, many different warzone scenarios — has a new game on the horizon: Call of Duty: Ghosts. In the official recently released trailer, an ethereal score swells against flashes of a post-apocalyptic terrain of vivid land- and seascapes. It is the new, new world of modern warfare. Within the first few seconds a new character is revealed — a SEAL team service dog.  

Where older versions of this game may have featured dogs as bloodthirsty obstacles, this time the canine fighter is on the side of good. The dog has its own role in this game, key to the way players strategize.

There are a number of promotional videos out there providing background on the serious lengths game designers went to amp up the gamer’s experience, improving the game’s scale and artistry. In the "Tech Comparison" video, creators discuss how they took "high res scans" of an actual SEAL dog, showing footage of a dog outfitted in motion-capture gear as he takes down a decoy and jumps up on high platforms. Their quest for war-dog authenticity was diligent: "Every detail is replicated," the voice-over says, "right down to the scars on the [dog’s] nose and that tattoo inside the ear."

And that authenticity is going to deliver in the gamer’s experience, creators promise. Yahoo! Games reports that the dog in Call of Duty: Ghosts will have his "own artificial intelligence and will apparently play a notable role in the game as part of the squad, who sniffs out dangers and aids the team."

News of an elite MWD’s inclusion in this upcoming version of the game, scheduled for release in November, has created an Internet stir this week. And not that we should be surprised, but this dog already has his own (fake) twitter feed. As of this morning, @CollarDuty has some 19,000 followers. Though, with a bio line that reads, "I hate cats…" and with tweets like "SQUIRREL!" I don’t think we’ll be seeing any SEAL dog secrets revealed via Twitter.

But the game, well, that actually looks pretty cool.

Hat Tip: The guys over at MWD on FB and DL.

Rebecca Frankel is away from her FP desk, working on a book about dogs and war.

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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