Blacks ops… literally.
Ever heard of Vantablack? Well now, you can play Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 inside a room coated in the stuff – a special version of Vantablack known as VBx2. It’s been applied to every wall of a unique gaming space, as part of a special experience for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, which will be launching globally on Friday, October 12. Known as the Black Ops House, this room, where practically all natural light is absorbed, creates an optical effect of playing the game within an endless blackout. Attendees to this special event were able to play Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Multiplayer, as well as witness Zombies and the mode, Blackout.
In case you don’t know, Vantablack was created by Nanosystems, a company that are based in Surrey, UK, and it’s primarily used in space applications, since the material’s unique properties mean that it absorbs 99.965% of natural light. The VBx2 coating, which the Black Ops House is made from, was designed to reduce reflected light to such a level it becomes extremely difficult to discern any surface features on an object, making a three-dimensional object appear as a two-dimensional black void.
Both the internal and external structure of the Black Ops House have been coated in VBx2; when you enter, you’ll first walk down an unsettling, 40 metre-long, raised platform, as you approach the house itself, creating the sense of walking into a pitch-black void. Sliding doors will open, to reveal a PlayStation 4 Pro and monitor, immersing the player fully in the experience.
Ben Jensen from Surrey Nanosystems said: “Since developing Vantablack we have had the opportunity to work with like-minded partners to deploy our coatings in new and imaginative ways. We’re all huge gamers and fans of Call of Duty so when Activision got in touch and we began discussing ideas, we couldn’t wait to bring the project to life. This is the first time we’ve ever created a room that is completely covered in the VBx2 coating, so is the darkest man-made room ever created. The future of entertainment is all about more and more immersive experiences. What could be more immersive than this?”
David Tyler, VP, Call of Duty, Activision, added: “Black Ops 4 delivers the deepest, most engaging Black Ops game that Treyarch, has ever created, so this is an incredible opportunity to create a space to match. The Black Ops House is an endlessly dark gaming space, completely immersing the player in the action of the game. Whether playing the all-out combat in Multiplayer, experiencing the all-new battle royale mode, Blackout, or the thrill of Zombies; this one-of-a-kind gaming experience raises the excitement to a whole new level. It’s been a fascinating and fun way to celebrate the launch of Black Ops 4 later this week.”
Among the players were Dere Alli, who had this to say – “It was a great experience playing Black Ops in the blackout environment, it felt like I was in the game! I wish I could get my own blackout room!”
The house itself was designed by Asif Khan, the award-winning London-based design studio working at the cutting edge of architecture and technology. Asif Khan commented that “Like many of my generation, I grew up gaming at home, with the living room and TV being the default scenery, but here we had a chance to reimagine the whole sensory experience of gaming. We heighten the player’s perception of space and time, from the moment they step up onto the black walkway, to the door which appears from nowhere, to then being enveloped in an infinite void. As an architecture studio we are dedicated to exploring and augmenting human experience. We are so excited here to have been given the opportunity to blur the boundaries between spatial design and digital experience.”
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 will release on PS4, Xbox One, and PC on October 12, 2018.