How to Experience the Call of Duty Games in Chronological Order

When it comes to video game history, few titles have left as significant a mark as Call of Duty. This franchise has not only redefined first-person shooters but has also made an indelible mark on the world of gaming. From groundbreaking single-player campaigns to intense online battles, Call of Duty has become a behemoth in the world of gaming. In this article, we will guide you on how to experience the Call of Duty games in chronological order, providing you with an in-depth look at each title in the series. We’ll also explore the numerous spin-offs, expansions, and unique features that have contributed to Call of Duty’s lasting success.

How Many Call of Duty Games Are There?

Before diving into the chronological order of Call of Duty games, it’s essential to understand the sheer breadth of the franchise. Over the years, Call of Duty has expanded into various subseries, undergone a reboot, and been developed by multiple studios. This complexity makes it challenging to pin down the exact number of Call of Duty games.

If we consider only the main entries, which include titles like the World War II series, the Modern Warfare series, and the Black Ops series, there are 19 games in the franchise. With the upcoming release of Modern Warfare III, that number rises to 20. However, the picture gets even more intricate when we account for expansions, online experiences, mobile games, and spin-offs.

For instance, Call of Duty: United Offensive serves as an expansion to the first title, while Call of Duty: Finest Hour and Call of Duty 2: Big Red One are side stories related to the initial two entries. The franchise has also ventured into other gaming genres, with titles like Call of Duty: Siege (2016) and Call of Duty: Heroes (2014). Mobile and portable versions of major console releases, such as PS Vita’s Call of Duty: Black Ops: Declassified and DS’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3: Defiance, offer unique gaming experiences.

Beyond traditional gaming platforms, Call of Duty has explored the Chinese market with the free-to-play Call of Duty Online (2015), which was later succeeded by Call of Duty Mobile (2019). The iconic Zombies mode, introduced in 2008’s World at War, has become a beloved staple and has appeared in various entries.

In recent years, the franchise ventured into the Battle Royale and Live Service genres with Warzone (2020), which enjoyed immense popularity and received a major overhaul with Warzone 2.0. Call of Duty even made its mark in the world of comics, with issues based on Zombies, the Black Ops subseries, and Vanguard.

To ensure clarity and prevent confusion, it’s worth noting that the reboot of the Modern Warfare series employs Roman numerals for numbering. Additionally, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, with its exclusive focus on multiplayer, is not included in the chronological list.

Call of Duty Games in Chronological Order

Now, let’s explore the Call of Duty games in chronological order, delving into the stories, characters, and key events of each title.

1. Call of Duty (2003)

The Call of Duty franchise had its humble beginnings in 2003, developed by Infinity Ward and set against the backdrop of World War II. This inaugural entry marked the start of the series’ exploration of historical events, following in the footsteps of other renowned titles like Medal of Honor.

In Call of Duty, players embark on three distinct campaigns, assuming the roles of soldiers from the United States, Britain, and the Soviet Union. Private Martin, the North American soldier, commences his training in 1942 and participates in the pivotal Normandy invasion of 1944. Meanwhile, the British Sergeant Evans engages in Operation Tonga during the same year, eventually aided by the recurring character, Captain Price. On the other side of the conflict, Soviet soldier Alexei Ivanovich Voronin’s campaign unfolds in the brutal Battle of Stalingrad.

Platforms: PC, Mac, PS3, Xbox 360 (Call of Duty Classic)

2. Call of Duty 2 (2005)

The sequel to the original title, Call of Duty 2, maintains the World War II setting but provides fresh perspectives. Unlike its predecessor, this installment features four campaigns, encompassing a North American soldier, a Soviet soldier, and two British soldiers.

Players step into the shoes of Private Vasili Koslov, tasked with defending Moscow against Nazi German forces. North American soldier Bill Taylor, on the other hand, joins the assault on La Pointe du Hoc during the iconic D-Day operation. The British soldiers, Sergeant John Davis and David Welsh, are embroiled in the North African conflict. Davis is under the guidance of the familiar Captain Price.

Platforms: PC, Mac, Xbox 360

3. Call of Duty: World at War (2008)

A few years after Call of Duty 3, Treyarch returned to deliver Call of Duty: World at War, another installment focused on World War II. This time, the game features campaigns centered on North American and Soviet forces.

In the North American campaign, players follow the journey of American Marine Private C. Miller as he participates in the Makin Island raid in 1942 and later engages in the Battle of Peleliu, where American forces confront the Japanese army. The Soviet campaign unfolds in the Battle of Stalingrad on the Eastern Front, with players assuming the role of Private Dimitri Petrenko.

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox, Xbox 360, Nintendo DS, Wii

4. Call of Duty 3 (2005)

Call of Duty 3 marks the first main game in the series not developed by Infinity Ward. Instead, Treyarch took the reins and transported players to the year 1944 during the Battle of Normandy.

In this installment, players experience the conflict from the perspectives of soldiers from Britain, Poland, the United States, Canada, and France. These diverse forces join together to confront the Nazi German forces in the village of Chambois, France, as part of the Battle of Normandy. Notably, this is the only main entry in the series that is not available on PC.

Platforms: Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii

5. Call of Duty: WWII (2017)

After almost a decade and a half since the first game, Sledgehammer Games returned the franchise to its World War II roots with Call of Duty: WWII. In this installment, the narrative unfolds through the eyes of a single protagonist, Ronald “Red” Daniels, accompanied by his loyal squad. Players assume the role of Red as he battles Nazi German forces across the European theater of war, from Normandy to Germany. While the game includes brief flashback sequences in 1940, making it the earliest game in the series chronologically, the core of the title is set in 1944.

Platforms: PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4

6. Call of Duty: Vanguard (2021)

In the most recent World War II setting, developer Sledgehammer Games continued to explore this historical event from a fresh perspective in Call of Duty: Vanguard. Unlike its predecessor, this game introduces multiple characters across different fronts, including the Eastern and Western Fronts. The primary objective revolves around uncovering Phoenix, a secret Nazi project that could turn the tide of the war in favor of Nazi Germany.

Vanguard also incorporates flashback sequences for the different protagonists, commencing in 1941. However, the majority of the campaign takes place in 1945, near the war’s conclusion.

Platforms: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5

7. Call of Duty: Black Ops (2010)

Following two significant entries, developer Treyarch transitioned to a new era with Call of Duty: Black Ops. Spanning the years 1961 to 1968, this installment explores the events of the Cold War and a portion of the Vietnam War, introducing players to a different historical context.

The main protagonist, Alex Mason, works with the CIA and is tasked with recalling events crucial to identifying Soviet sleeper agents hidden within the United States. These agents intend to release a dangerous chemical weapon known as Nova 6.

Platforms: PC, Mac, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, and Wii

8. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War (2020)

Developed jointly by Treyarch and Raven Software, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War aims to bridge the narrative between the original Black Ops and Black Ops 2. In this installment, the main protagonist, nicknamed “Bell,” allows players to customize their name, gender, and other details, including dialogue choices.

Set in 1981, players collaborate with returning characters like Alex Mason, Frank Woods, and Jason Hudson under the leadership of CIA’s Russell Adler. The elite team’s mission is to apprehend a Soviet figure known as “Perseus,” who is planning an attack on the United States.

Platforms: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5

9. Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 (2012)

The sequel to the original Black Ops unfolds across two distinct timelines. In the first timeline, players follow in the footsteps of Alex Mason several years after he and his team successfully thwarted Nova 6. It’s now 1986, and Jason Hudson enlists Mason’s help in the search for Frank Woods, who disappeared in Cuando Cubango, Angola.

The second timeline centers on David Mason, Alex’s son, in 2025. David’s mission revolves around pursuing Raul Menendez, the leader of Cordis Die, a terrorist organization responsible for igniting the Second Cold War.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U

10. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007)

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare represents a turning point in the series, moving away from the traditional Allies vs. Axis conflict and embracing a more contemporary setting. In 2011, Yasir Al-Fulani, the president of a fictional Middle Eastern country, falls victim to the executioner’s hand, Khaled Al-Asad, the leader of a revolutionary party. Meanwhile, Russia finds itself embroiled in a civil war, ignited by Imran Zakhaev, an arms dealer.

A squad led by Captain Price and featuring protagonist John “Soap” MacTavish, alongside other memorable characters, must work together to avert an international crisis.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox One (Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered)

11. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2009)

Five years after the events of the preceding game, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 introduces players to Vladimir Makarov, an Ultranationalist who continues the work of Imran Zakhaev. This extremist faction gains control of Russia, granting Makarov the power to orchestrate terrorist acts against the United States.

Well-known characters like the newly appointed Captain Soap and Captain Price join forces with Sergeant Gary “Roach” Sanderson, Lieutenant Simon “Ghost” Riley, “Nikolai,” and other agents in a bid to thwart Makarov’s secret plan.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, PlayStation 4 (Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Remastered)

12. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (2011)

The conclusion of the first Modern Warfare trilogy, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 sees the pursuit of terrorist Vladimir Makarov reach its climactic peak. Captain Price’s team is reassembled, including Yuri, an ex-Spetsnaz operative known to Nikolai. Captain John “Soap” MacTavish also makes a return for the final mission.

Makarov captures Boris Vorshevsky, the president of Russia, who was on the brink of establishing peace with the United States. Threatening the president’s daughter, Makarov gains access to nuclear launch codes, once again becoming an international menace.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, Wii

13. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019)

In 2019, Infinity Ward decided to reboot the successful Modern Warfare series, revisiting classic characters in a fresh timeline. Iconic figures like Captain Price return, embarking on a new conflict involving a fictional republic called Urzikstan, which is invaded by a Russian army. Simultaneously, the terrorist organization Al-Qatala, hailing from Urzikstan, launches operations across the globe. Captain Price, leading his Task Force 141 and the Urzikstan Liberation Force, strives to de-escalate the conflict.

Platforms: PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4

14. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II (2022)

Continuing the narrative of the reboot, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II unfolds in 2022 and features returning characters from Task Force 141 and the Urzikstan Liberation Force, with a focus on Farah Karim.

While Al-Qatala remains a threat, all eyes turn to the Quds Force, an Iranian revolutionary group commanded by Hassan Zyani. Zyani collaborates with Al-Qatala and a Mexican fictional city’s cartel called Las Almas, planning terrorist acts against the United States following the assassination of General Ghorbrani, an Iranian military leader.

Platforms: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5

15. Call of Duty: Ghosts (2013)

A standalone entry with minimal connections to previous titles, Call of Duty: Ghosts was developed by Infinity Ward in 2013. As the title suggests, the game focuses on the special operations group known as the Ghosts, a U.S. team entrusted with clandestine missions.

Set in 2027, after a decade of conflicts in the Middle East and an oil crisis, the Federation of the Americas, a South American force, initiates war against the United States. Players join a new team tasked with stopping Gabriel T. Rorke, the former leader of the Ghosts.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Wii U

16. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (2014)

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare marked a significant departure, both in terms of its temporal setting and development, as it was the first game by Sledgehammer Games. Set in 2054, players assume the role of Jack Mitchell, a member of the United States Marine Corps who later becomes embroiled in the private military corporation known as Atlas after a life-altering accident. The adversaries in this entry are Chechenian, specifically a separatist group called KVA led by Joseph “Hades” Chkheidze.

Notably, Advanced Warfare introduced substantial changes to gameplay due to its futuristic setting, such as soldiers donning Exoskeletons, which grant them unique abilities.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4

17. Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 (2015)

The concluding chapter of the initial Black Ops trilogy, developed by Treyarch, ventures into the future. Set in 2065, it depicts a Third Cold War between the Common Defense Pact and the Winslow Accord. This war sees the emergence of robotic drones, cyborg supersoldiers, unmanned air forces, and various technological advancements.

Once again, players join a black ops team, led by the character simply referred to as “The Player,” alongside Jacob Hendricks and their cybernetics division. Their mission involves investigating a mysterious event in Singapore and monitoring the 54 Immortals, a formidable crime organization.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4

18. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (2016)

No other Call of Duty game takes players further into the future than Infinite Warfare. This installment, set around the 2080s, introduces the United Nations Space Alliance, established as Earth’s natural resources become depleted. As humans venture into space, this alliance is defended by the Solar Associated Treaty Organization, a military force tasked with countering the totalitarian regime known as the Settlement Defense Front, based on Mars.

Platforms: PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4

How to Play the Call of Duty Games By Release Date

For those who prefer to experience the Call of Duty games based on their release date, the following list provides the order in which they were launched:

  1. Call of Duty (2003)
  2. Call of Duty 2 (2005)
  3. Call of Duty 3 (2006)
  4. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007)
  5. Call of Duty: World at War (2008)
  6. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2009)
  7. Call of Duty: Black Ops (2010)
  8. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (2011)
  9. Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 (2012)
  10. Call of Duty: Ghosts (2013)
  11. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (2014)
  12. Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 (2015)
  13. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (2016)
  14. Call of Duty: WWII (2017)
  15. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019)
  16. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War (2020)
  17. Call of Duty: Vanguard (2021)
  18. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II (2022)
  19. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III (2023)

What’s Next for Call of Duty?

As of the time of writing, fans of the Call of Duty series are eagerly anticipating the release of the next entry, Modern Warfare III, scheduled for November 10. This release marks the conclusion of the reboot trilogy. In the realm of Call of Duty’s online multiplayer, Warzone 2.0 continues to receive frequent updates, catering to its millions of dedicated players. The launch of Warzone Mobile is also on the horizon, offering a new way for fans to engage with the franchise on the go.

Additionally, there is ongoing speculation about the possibility of Call of Duty expanding into other forms of media, such as TV series and movies. While a film by Stefano Sollima was announced a couple of years ago, it has yet to materialize. The future of the Call of Duty franchise remains as exciting and dynamic as ever.

You May Also Like: Must watch star trek movies

Author Profile

Jabeen Panchaya
Writer and Reviewer


Leave a Reply