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The Real-Life Inspiration Behind Warzone's Rebirth Island

SVG 9/17/2022 Stephen Michaels
Warzone soldier wearing mask © Activision Warzone soldier wearing mask

Following its introduction in "Call of Duty: Black Ops," Rebirth Island became a popular map for battle royale matches in "Black Ops 2" and then "Warzone. It features several notable locations with plenty of landing spots to choose from, loot to acquire, and places to plan your next ambush. It makes regular appearances in "Warzone" seasons and remains a fan favorite.

While hardcore players likely know every inch of the digital destination, some may not have realized that it's based on a real-world place with its own interesting history. Rebirth Island is located off the coast of Russia in "Call of Duty," however, its real-life inspiration can be found in United States' San Francisco Bay. This is none other than Alcatraz Island, the location of Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary, one of the most famous prisons in modern history.

FaZe Clan's Nuke Squad learned about this connection and explored the island when they visited the now closed prison in 2021. While the fictional interpretation has its own history and names for areas, the group had no trouble finding their way around and identifying game landmarks on the actual island. This accuracy spoke to the care the developers took in bringing the island to "Warzone." Nuke Squad was impressed with these efforts and enjoyed their time on the real-life Rebirth Island.

An Accurate Recreation Of The Real Rebirth Island

Aerial view of Rebirth Island © Activision Aerial view of Rebirth Island

Also known as "The Rock," Alcatraz was originally a military installation in the 19th Century before being transformed into a federal prison in 1934. Its distance from the shore and the treacherous waters surrounding it made the island an effective location for a prison, with escape proving nearly impossible. In translating this fascinating island into an in-game experience, Infinity Ward and Raven Software showed remarkable attention to detail.

A video posted to Reddit by user yoursofunny offers viewers their own tour of Alcatraz with a side-by-side comparison of Rebirth Island from "Warzone." While many of the interior spaces are quite different (the island is now a tourist attraction), the exteriors and building design and placement are incredibly similar. Reddit commenters were blown away by the accuracy of it all.

Changes have been made to the map over the years to improve the experience for players, but Rebirth Island as a whole remains a loving reimagining of the iconic prison. Though the real-world island no longer functions as a federal penitentiary and Alcatraz itself may not be as well known as it once was, "Warzone" has carried on its legacy and made it a part of gaming history.

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