After a comment from Mark Rubin, executive producer of XDefiant, many fans are wondering what the likelihood is that XDefiant gets a clan wars system, and what Ubisoft’s take on the feature would look like. Hopes are high in the community, as this wouldn’t be Rubin’s first -or even second time incorporating clan wars into an FPS.

For those unfamiliar, clan wars are clan-based competitions that allow players to compete for in-game, and sometimes even real rewards. As far as FPSs go, many games have had clans as a social feature to allow friends to play together under one banner. Halo, Destiny, Apex Legends, and a few other titles have had some form of clan/guild/club system, but they are typically no more than just a means of acquiring an in-game clan tag. Ultimately, Call of Duty has been the only franchise to truly flesh-out the clan system, and that is in part thanks to Mark Rubin.

Once a producer at Infinity Ward, Rubin helped make Call of Duty 2 and Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, and went on to helm the development of Modern Warfare 2, Modern Warfare 3, and Call of Duty: Ghosts as Executive Producer. Under his leadership, both clans and clan wars were introduced to the Call of Duty franchise in Ghosts.

Call of Duty Elite was an online service that was released alongside Modern Warfare 3 in 2011. It was viewable online and also had companion apps for Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and smartphones. Elite allowed players to view detailed lifetime statistics, watch a variety of digital content, and most notably, featured a suite of clan features. Clans could house up to a hundred players and allowed them to level up their clan and participate in competitions called Clan Operations. Across different game modes in multiplayer, clans racked up points based on a particular metric (e.g. kills in TDM, captures in domination, etc.) over a pre-set period of time. These tournaments awarded various cosmetics and badges, and some even offered real prizes such as COD merchandise, ATVs, Jeeps, and vacations. Clan Operations would be the forerunner to Clan Wars, and this aspect was even Mark Rubin’s idea. Call of Duty Elite was received very well by the player base, and had nearly two million mobile downloads alone, and over 670,000 clans were formed after just five months according to

COD elite persisted through the lifespan of MW3 and Black Ops 2, but was shut down in 2014. Still under Rubin’s leadership, Infinity Ward rebuilt the clan system and launched it with the Call of Duty app for Call of Duty: Ghosts, replacing Clan Operations with Clan Wars. In these wars, divisions were formed based on a clan’s skill level and player count, and the objective was to complete assignments across multiple game modes which would unlock nodes awarding Clan Points and hindering the opponent’s progress while boosting your own.

After the release of Ghosts and Mark Rubin’s departure from Infinity Ward, Clan Wars and the Call of Duty app were improved upon once more for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. However, that would be the final iteration supported by Activision. With the release of Black Ops III, Clan Wars was removed, and as of now the feature is relegated solely to Call of Duty: Mobile.

With XDefiant’s release all but officially confirmed to be in Q1 2024 (before March 31st), we will at long last have our hands on the game for good. While clan wars will not be available at launch, the feature may not be too far away. Mark Rubin has made multiple posts on discussing how he would love to implement clan wars into XDefiant, leaving fans to speculate what XDefiant’s version of clan wars would look like. Could we potentially see an app-based approach like in COD, or will this be an entirely in-game system? Would we see rewards like skins and other cosmetics, or even real-life prizes? Will XDefiant follow suit with other FPSs and modern Call of Duty, letting clans largely fall to the wayside, or will Ubisoft and Rubin breathe life into the fan-favorite feature once more?

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