Thursday, 23 May 2024

10 Things We Learned About Sledgehammer: A Journey of Innovation and Commitment

Call of Duty

Sledgehammer, the renowned lead developer of the Call of Duty series, has captivated fans with their groundbreaking games and commitment to excellence. In this article, we chronicle 10 fascinating insights we gained from the Sledgehammer panel, “Sledgehammer: The Seven Year Journey.” Discover the company’s history, their dedication to believability, and their commitment to diversity.

Making Modern Warfare 3: A Collective Decision

When faced with the opportunity to collaborate with Infinity Ward on the final installment of the Modern Warfare trilogy, Sledgehammer’s co-founders, Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey, turned to the team for guidance. The resounding vote in favor of helping develop the game solidified their commitment to the project.

A Humble Beginning: Moments of Doubt

Even successful developers like Sledgehammer had their moments of doubt during their early days. Schofield vividly recalls sitting in his car outside their humble office, wondering if they had made the right decision. These doubts, though fleeting, remind us of the resilience and determination it takes to succeed.

Advancing Believable Technology

Sledgehammer’s dedication to believability sets them apart. When crafting the futuristic world of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, they immersed themselves in scientific research, consulting experts from NASA, JPL, MIT, and even the Human Genome Project. Every technological element in the game was grounded in scientific theory, giving players an experience that felt authentic and immersive.

Hollywood Connections: Motion Capture on the Avatar 2 Set

Imagine the excitement at Sledgehammer when they discovered they were using the same motion capture set as the highly anticipated film sequel, Avatar 2. The association with a film that inspired much of their own technological advancements added an extra touch of magic to their work.

Introducing “The Fourth Wall”: Showcasing Next-Gen Tech

To showcase their revolutionary next-gen technology, Sledgehammer created a captivating demo called “The Fourth Wall.” This demo highlighted the game’s stunning facial technology, including the ability to dynamically adjust pupils. It was a striking testament to Sledgehammer’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of gaming graphics.

A Name That Makes an Impact

The name “Sledgehammer” holds deep significance for the studio. Condrey explains that they wanted to make a lasting impact on the software, the game, and the fans. Schofield adds with a touch of humor, “We’re also about as subtle as a sledgehammer.”

In Search of Authenticity: Blowing Up the Golden Gate Bridge

Sledgehammer’s dedication to authenticity led them to consult an expert bridge inspector while researching for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. In a bold move, they asked how one would destroy the Golden Gate Bridge, allowing them to create a thrilling and realistic gaming experience.

A Night with Kevin Spacey: A Surprising Revelation

During the development of Advanced Warfare, a memorable night out with Kevin Spacey, Schofield, and Condrey took an unexpected turn. They found themselves doing karaoke, singing songs from Spacey’s 2004 album, “Beyond the Sea.” This little-known fact about Spacey’s musical talent surprised many, including avid fans.

Commitment to Veterans: Activision’s Efforts

Activision, the parent company of Sledgehammer, demonstrates its commitment to veterans through initiatives like the Call of Duty Endowment. As part of these efforts, the company dedicates a full day to volunteering at veterans’ homes, uplifting those who have served their country.

Embracing Diversity in Gaming: A Studio Culture

Sledgehammer’s commitment to diversity shines through in their games, including the inclusion of Ilona, one of the series’ first prominent female characters. Schofield affirms their dedication to creating an inclusive environment and representing women in the military. He envisions a future where the military comprises an equal balance of men and women.


Q: What is the significance of Sledgehammer’s name?
A: The name symbolizes their desire to make an impact on the software, game, and fans.

Q: How does Sledgehammer ensure believability in their games?
A: They immerse themselves in scientific research, consulting experts from various fields to ground their technology in reality.

Q: What is Activision’s commitment to veterans?
A: Activision demonstrates its commitment through initiatives like the Call of Duty Endowment and a company-wide Veterans Day.


The Sledgehammer panel offered a captivating glimpse into the world of this remarkable game development studio. From their commitment to believability and diversity to their collaboration with Hollywood icons, Sledgehammer continues to push the boundaries of gaming innovation. As avid fans eagerly await their next masterpiece, we can only anticipate the exciting journeys still to come.