The Making of a Prestige Edition

With a new Call of Duty comes a new Prestige Edition. While last year’s Prestige Edition set the bar high, the goal is always to ratchet that bar even higher. For Black Ops, our number one priority was to provide a Prestige Edition that was something we felt the fans would appreciate and that made sense for Black Ops.

With that in mind, we turned to the game for inspiration. We asked ourselves, what from the game would make a kick-ass Prestige item? We explored a TON of ideas, but the clear front runner was one of our new Killstreak Rewards, the RC-XD remote control car. The in-game version allows you to remotely pilot an RC car armed with explosives and chase down enemies (one of the most satisfying Killstreak Rewards in Call of Duty to date!). But that brought us to our next challenge: since putting an explosive device on the car was out of the question (obviously), what could we do with to bring the RC-XD to life?

First and foremost, the car had to look and feel authentic – like the one you see in Black Ops. The designers of the car left no stone unturned replicating the in-game model, even going so far as to add “battle detail” on the car as if you picked it up straight off the MP battlefield. The frame, the colors, the wheel caps, the undercarriage – even the tire tread – are all faithfully reproduced in painstaking detail. We went with multi-textured plastics and paints to give the car a more dynamic look. There was no greater validation of this than the look of amazement when we showed the MP team at Treyarch their Killstreak Reward in real life.

Second was making sure the functional RC aspects of the car itself were of equally high quality. Given the variety of RC cars on the market, quality was a huge concern with the team. We wanted to make sure the car itself was fun to drive, just like in the game. Everything from the steering, suspension, throttle, acceleration, and responsiveness was vetted by a team of RC car experts. We went with digital vs analog components to help deliver a driving experience more consistent with hobbyist-grade RC cars. High grade plastics were also used to help ensure durability, something that is especially important given all the electronic components going into the car. The end result was a pistol-grip controller with variable acceleration, 4-wheel independent suspension for improved handling, hi-low speed controls, digital proportional throttle and steering, and up to 200 ft. control range.

Finally, the car had to have something that set itself worlds apart from other Collector’s Editions (and RC cars) out there. Again, going back to the game, we looked at how the car was used in MP, how players would find a hiding spot before remotely driving their car to run down unsuspecting enemies. We then asked ourselves – how cool would it be to run “surveillance” on unsuspecting friends and co-workers? The answer is “very”, so we gave the car a camera and a microphone that feeds live video and audio over a 2.4 Ghz wireless signal to an LCD screen and speakers embedded in the remote controller. Using the LCD screen in the controller, you can remotely drive the car from the safety of your cube and eavesdrop on co-workers down the hall – just don’t tell HR :)

Let’s not forget everything from the Hardened Edition is included as well. We re-created the Black Ops emblem in the form of a high grade, limited collector’s medal, complete with display case. We’ve made a full outfit for your Xbox Live or PS Home avatars based on Woods, one of the key characters in the game. For our zombie fans we’ve brought over ALL 4 zombie maps from World at War: Nacht der Untoten, Verruckt, Shi No Numa, and Der Riese – now playable in the Black Ops engine with fellow Black Ops Prestige and Hardened owners, and in addition to the new zombie maps already included in Black Ops. And of course there’s the game which comes inside of our premium SteelBookTM case, which is a must-have for any Call of Duty collection display.

Add all of this together and you get our biggest Collector’s Edition yet – something we sincerely hope our most hardcore fans will enjoy!

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