“There’s a soldier in all of us.”
The 90-second ad by 72andSunny features a group of friends and their very own Call of Duty dog in a war-torn Las Vegas. Directed by James Mangold, the spot also follows the group through a snowy vehicular assault and a shootout in space. The four friends begin their trip on the streets of Las Vegas shooting enemies left and right. They eventually make their way to a rooftop and one of the players gets distracted by the sight of a beautiful sniper, Megan Fox. Thinking he’s hot stuff, he attempts to make conversation with her only to be saved by her from an incoming drone attack. The players are later seen scaling the large building until an explosion causes them to free fall… into space! The transition is done very well but space seems to be the reason they stop falling which doesn’t make any sense whatsoever, oh well. One player makes use of the zero-gravity and tosses ammunition to his friend who uses it to ecstatically shoot enemies. There’s another quibble I have with the trailer, how are they shooting in place without holding onto something? Oh brother. The enjoyment from shooting enemies soon becomes enjoyment from driving a vehicle through a snowy terrain with one of the players manning the vehicle’s turret. The ad concludes by recapping places shown previously with the players having the time of their lives, even the dog seems to be enjoying the ride! After shooting down a chopper with a rocket launcher, the players walk towards the camera in slow motion while the tagline “There’s a player in all of us” appears. Seems to be the formula. The very last scene shows the players walking along the dancing waters from the fountain in front of the “Bellagio”, which are being caused by gunfire from an aircraft. I absolutely love this part.
Activision’s ad campaign has been creatively stellar for years. From TBWA’s 2010 Black Ops spot with Kobe Bryant and Jimmy Kimmel through 72’s trailers for Modern Warfare 3, featuring with Jonah Hill, Sam Worthington, and a stint from Dwight Howard, and Black Ops II with Robert Downey Jr. They keep going back to the well and have been very successful in the process.
The trailer is one of my top ads in 2013, and that’s not exclusive to just video games ads. The song, “I’m Gonna Live Till I Die” by Frank Sinatra, is a perfect match for the spot as well and the lyrics accompany some of the scenes extremely well. Though this year’s ad features less prominent personalities compared to previous years, Megan Fox still does a great job playing the part. Perhaps she’s due for an action role.