Call of Duty: Warzone fans have an interesting theory about the time-travelling Verdansk map and what the new Verdansk '84 means for the game's future.
It's all gone a bit confusing in the wacky Call of Duty world. If zombies running rife in the main game and then crawling their way into Call of Duty: Warzone wasn't weird enough, there's an interesting theory that's floating around about the new Verdansk '84 map. Although it was widely publicised ahead of time, the destruction of Verdansk was still a show-stopping eve that saw the Warzone servers pushed to their limits.
In the ultimate case of out with the old, in with the new, Verdansk '84 is a blast from the past that beautifully marries Raven Software's battle royale favourite with Treyarch's Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. The OG Verdansk being wiped out has left plenty of room for Verdansk '84, but with Warzone trying to keep some sense of narrative and normality, there's a wild theory that explains why we've gone to this specific time period. And no, it's not simply to we keep playing Cold War.
What is the Warzone time-travelling Verdansk theory?
To examine what's going on in Warzone right now, we have to look at the game's announcement trailer. As well as dropping a banging remix for "Eye of the Tiger", the trailer for Verdansk '84 showed off what's change in-game. The trailer starts with the original Verdansk being nuked, but it isn't long before we rewind to the year 1984. The general idea is that everything taking place in Warzone right now is a flashback to Russell Adler's covert days.
When you deploy into the new Warzone, there's the word "Flashback" in the corner of the screen. All of this ties together with a new fast-travel system of red doors that were just revealed in a player survey. Remember that last year, the names of the new multiplayer maps were leaked through the Black Ops Cold War internal alpha and "Red Door" codename. We hadn't thought much of it, but it looks increasingly likely it's all connected to a bigger arc.
How do red doors link to the Warzone Verdansk theory?
Diving deeper into tin foil and spoiler territory, red doors were a big part of Cold War's infamous "Break on Through" mission. Here, Adler subjected the mysterious "Bell" to psychoactive drugs and went on a trippy trip through different scenarios in Vietnam. Linking this to Warzone, there's the idea that Verdansk '84 is simply the player reliving a flashback mission to the glory days. It would neatly explain why Adler features so much in the games new marketing.
In the latest update, Alder has been kidnapped by the villainous Stitch and is out there somewhere in Verdansk. Given that we know Alder survives the ordeal, the new map might be players reliving the rescue of the cold-hearted CIA agent. Others have noted that a red door appeared at the end of "The Destruction of Verdansk Part 2". Before the final credits rolled, the camera whizzed through the red door and there was a stoic warning when Stich told players, "You have no idea what's coming".
It's all a neat idea, but then again, maybe we're overthinking things and Call of Duty: Warzone really just is a battle royale game where you try to be last squad standing. More than just chucking players into a match and whittling them down, battle royale games are adding expanded lore to their stories to keep players engaged. While Apex Legends and Fortnite arguably do it the best, Activision is keen to make sure Warzone isn't left behind. Whatever Raven Software is working on, we're suitably confused by the new map and can't wait to step through the red door to see what's on the other side.
Images via Activision