Call Of Duty: Vanguard multiplayer will be free-to-play for four days this week

As rival Battlefield 2042 prepares for its official launch Activision has announced a lengthy free trial for Call Of Duty his weekend.

Things are not going well for Call Of Duty: Vanguard. Despite purposefully preventing reviews from appearing at launch the critical response has been muted at worst but the game’s commercial success has been far more damaging, with the game suffering the series’ worst launch sales in 14 years.

That is no doubt part of the reason for Activision announcing a free trial just a fortnight after the game’s launch, something that doesn’t usually happen until months later.

Vanguard’s free multiplayer trial begins at 6pm GMT on November 18 and will last for four days, which coincides with the launch of Battlefield 2042 launches on Friday, November 19 (after releasing a week earlier for those that paid for the more expensive editions).

Activision is also set to release the Shipment map just before the trial begins, a popular small scale map that, ironically, made its debut 14 yeas ago in Call Of Duty 4.

This version will be different to the original in that it randomises the position of shipping containers, many of which are destructible – including one hanging by a crane.

How much any of this will distract from the Battlefield 2042 launch, or reverse Vanguard’s fortunes, remains to be seen but the other main issue for the game at the moment is online cheats, which Activision also attempted to address yesterday.

The publisher is also dealing with ongoing allegations, and several lawsuits, decrying the company’s workplace conditions and attitude to women and minorities, with CEO Bobby Kotick this week coming under direct criticism in a damning new report by The Wall Street Journal.

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