The other problem is that we haven’t seen a situation before where video games are mainstream. When big budget AAA etc etc developers stopped tackling World War 2, they weren’t as mainstream or important as they are now.
In this current climate, people are content to write off the same game design as some sort of interesting tour through gamedom or ‘gamer culture’. The best analogy I can come up with is that people are getting excited (or annoyed) about Battlefield being in WWII in the same way that a famous musician announces where they are going to tour next.
RobZacny wrote about how Call of Duty: WWII looks as though it, and by extension the genre/medium, is willing to forget about history, and is therefore content to internalise ‘greatest generation’ myths topped with copying & recycling what are now OLD examples of how the movies portrayed WWII, and sprinkled with video game fun.
If believed, and that Cod: WWII represents the point where, with the dwindling numbers of living primary sources, that history becomes hazy, then Battlefield V/5 etc may end up being the point where WWII history ends up looking like a drug-fueled fever dream.
And… in talking about the new box art, besides it looking like said fever dream, and ignoring the ‘triumph’ of having a women on the cover - nothing about the box art communicates World War 2 in the slightest. People who don’t follow video game news etc wouldn’t know what era it is set in - I’ve tested that theory. Battlefield 1 was bad enough, since it had a character on it that a friend said it looked like the adventures of Count Blackula, and did, at best extremely hazily, communicate World War 1.
Generally speaking, while CoD pertains to act ‘seriously’ about the subject (and arguably too much so) Battlefield marketing screams edgelord underground club vibes, or a fashion show; More ‘Fight Club’ than Battlefield. EA borrowed its dad’s (Activision) movie collection, and then proceeded to edit them with modern music and scenes made to look more COOL!
I remember watching a recent Polish WWII film, which also tried, 3/4ths of the way through, this ‘edgy young people modern flair Call of Duty’, and unfortunately it was the point where that movie (cannot remember what it was called) Jumped.The.Shark.