The next downloadable map pack for Call of Duty: Black Ops - Escalation - has been outed by Australian games retailer GAME. In true Treyarch fashion, a new Zombies map will be included. Named "Call of the Dead", the co-op survival board joins four competitive maps (that should be playable in the pseudo-cooperative mode Combat Training as well), respectively named Zoo, Hotel, Convoy, and Stockpile.
So far no price has been discussed, but there appears to be some marketing material that provides a hard release date of May 03rd, 2011. This jibes with the usual Call of Duty DLC release procedure, as it falls on a Tuesday. The other half of that procedure is a hefty price, so don't be surprised if you're staring down the barrel of a $15 price tag. If the rumor proves to be true, you can also expect Xbox 360 users to get this DLC first, with PS3 and PC users some months behind.
But wait - there's more!
Upon further examination, the story gets a little deeper, according to the MTV Multiplayer blog: easter eggs and teasers hidden in the game's on-disc maps hint at something called "Quarantine". However, these same rumors indicated some kind of announcement on April 07th -which was yesterday - and yet the presses are silent.
If there's anything we can say about the developer's dedication to keep Zombies a viable co-op option for shooter fans, it's that it just won't die. See what I did there? Now if they could only fix the Ascension matchmaking...
Editor's note: as of the posting time of this news, the MTV Multiplayer source article incorrectly lists the First Strike map pack as having three competitive/Combat Training maps. In fact, there were four competitive maps and one Zombies map.