"Launch the counter-offensive! This map features 3 fast-paced combat scenarios with short and medium range gameplay." - In-Game Description

Operation Griffin is available in Call of Duty: WWII.

Operation Griffin was the second War Mode map we developed, it benefited greatly from the knowledge we gained building the mode and Operation Breakout. I wrote the pitch for the Battle of the Bulge setting and worked with creative direction to align it to War Mode's goals. My main focus was providing a different experience from Breakout to show that War Mode wasn't a rigid Attack/Defend gamemode, so the objectives were all new. I served as the primary level designer with support from Dave Osei and Mike Renner. I also handled map specific systems and concepts outside of the core War Mode gameplay scripting. I coordinated with every department to help close the level out.

The first objective was originally a variation on the mode Blitz from Call of Duty: Ghosts and Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. The Wehrmacht needed to get enough troops across the Allied trenchline to advance the objective. In playtests it proved chaotic, it was difficult for Allied players to track and keep a hold on the advancing Axis. The Tank Escort objective proved to be our most popular internal objective, so I pivoted to a variant in which the Wehrmacht had three tanks and needed to push two across the Allied trench. It worked out much better in playtests, there was a lot of fun cat and mouse gameplay around the tanks and the push/pull of all three was very unique. The blocking hedgehogs were Gameplay Engineering's addition, and it came out of a desire for the Allied team to have some agency in the objective, and their dual purpose as offensive elements for the Wehrmacht was serendipitous.

The gascan objective was based on reports of Wehrmacht troops raiding Allied fuel depots in Ardennes Forest. It was originally based on Capture The Flag but found in playtesting it wasn't very exciting. We revised the objective with a more dynamic version based on the gamemodes Uplink and Gridiron. Throwing the gascans opened a lot of strategy and the play area evolved to reflect the change with walls lowering to facilitate the added player agency.

The bridge was based on the axis approach of Stavelot, Belgium where Allied forces failed to detonate a crossing point during the Battle of the Bulge. The final objective of the map went through a lot of revisions. It originally was the area around the bridge and a variation of Domination where the Axis would have to hold several capture points until they earned enough score. Several problems with the design came up during playtesting: The fiction of the objective didn’t work, the finale of the map wasn’t very interesting (points counting up until you win felt anti-climactic), the bridge wasn’t the focus, and it felt bad to leave the tank behind after putting so much work into getting it here.

The second attempt was a series of capture points across the bridge similar to the gamemode Momentum from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. It solved the issues that the previous design failed on, but felt inconsistent with previous tank interactions. The Tank Escort objective solved every problem that the previous two designs could not, so we reimplemented it and took pains to keep it feeling different from Operation Breakout's Tank Escort.

The map also had an additional final objective to match Operation Breakout's length where after escorting the tank where you had to plant a bomb in a bunker, but it felt unrelated since the level story was completed with the tank crossing the bridge intact and it was removed.

Screenshots courtesy of some of the many talented artists who worked on the level: Gabe Cervantes, Mark Maxwell, Eugene Geer, Nick Comeau, Raquel Garcia, and Sam Williams.