Quite a bit has happened in the Black Ops timeline since it all started with Call of Duty: World At War. With dozens of characters and seemingly endless military scenarios to sift through, we here at Wikia thought we would help out by providing a timeline succinctly summarizing the series' most important events.
Call of Duty: World at War
The Black Ops timeline begins with Call of Duty: World At War, when Private C. Miller manages to escape from the Makin Atoll garrison on ‘’’August 17th’’’, 1942. A month later, on September 17th, Dimitri Petrenko and Viktor Reznov conspire to assassinate General Heinrich Amsel, the German officer responsible for the massacre in Moscow’s Red Square.
In 1945, on April 3rd, Petty officer Locke begins battle against the Japanese Navy in southern part of the Pacific theater. Meanwhile, on the western front, Dimitri and Reznov penetrate the German lines at Seelow Heights. Later that month, on April 30th, the Red Army captures Berlin. Back in the Pacific theater, on May 29th, 1945, Private Miller and his fellow troops take Shuri Castle on Okinawa. It’s there that he encounters Sgt Roebuck. At this point in the timeline, The player must choose whether to save Roebuck or Polonsky. Later that year, Reznov and Dimitri's positions were compromised after an attempted assault on a Russian ship that contains Nova 6 gas. Reznov is captured by the enemy and Dimitri is killed.
Captain Alex Mason, Master Sergeant Frank Woods, and Chief Petty Officer Bowman make an assassination attempt on Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. Their attempt fails and Captain Mason is captured and sent to Vorkuta Prison.
Over the course of the year, Soviet Major General Nikita Dragovich tries to brainwash Captain Mason using a variety of subversive psychological tactics. Reznov, who was also an inmate of Vorkuta at this time, used his friendship with Mason to sabotage the brainwashing by implanting new targets to kill: Dragovich, Kravchenko and Steiner, in revenge for betraying him and killing Petrenko.
On October 6th, Mason and Reznov finally escape Vorkuta Prison and Reznov is killed in the process. The following month, on November 10th, Mason is tasked with killing his former captor, Major General Dragovich. Later that month, Mason, Woods, Brooks and Bowman rescue Special Agent Grigori Weaver, and destroy Russian rockets before they have the chance to be fired off.
On January 21st, 1968, Mason ventures to Vietnam with Woods and Special Agent Jason Hudson, just two weeks prior to the Tet Offensive. It’s around this time that Dragovich begins testing Nova 6 gas on select villages throughout Vietnam and Laos Village. Soon after, Hudson and Weaver try to capture the inventor of Nova 6 – Daniel Clarke. Thought Clarke is killed in the process, Hudson and Weaver discover Dragovich’s abandoned compound, where they collect samples of Nova 6 Gas. On February 18th, Hudson captures a base on Mt. Yamantau, where he learns of Dr. Steiner, another scientist responsible for the synthesis of Nova 6 gas, who attempts to defect. Meanwhile, Mason, Woods, and Bowman are captured elsewhere in Vietnam. Bowman is killed and Woods is presumed dead.
Soon after, Hudson and Mason both arrive at Rebirth Island, the location of the secret Soviet bioweapons facility where Dr. Steiner is doing research. Before Hudson can extract the doctor, however, Mason manages to break into his laboratory. Mason beats up Steiner, eulogizes all the good men that died because of Nova 6 and shoots Steiner in the head, killing him. Hudson arrives soon after and captures Mason. They put aside their differences and resolve to capture the Rusalka, a Soviet ship anchored in the Cuban waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The ship will broadcast number sequences that will activate sleeper cells in the United States ordered to attack the country with Nova 6. Mason and Hudson foil Dragovich’s plan for contamination and kill Dragovich.
Black Ops II
Over a decade has passed since Alex Mason and Jason Hudson assassinated Dragovich, a turning point in the Cold War. On July 2nd, 1986, the pair receive intel that Frank Woods is alive and being held captive in Vietnam. They infiltrate the base where he is imprisoned and liberate him.
On September 5th, 1986, Woods accidentilly kills Josefina Menendez, the sister of Raul Menendez, a Nicaraguan political activist, with a grenade during a tactical assault on the Menendez villa. Raul Menendez would never forget this transgression. The following day, Russians attack Afghanistan, and Woods and Mason narrowly manage to save the Mujahideen’s compound.
On December 20th, 1989, after being captured during a tactical assault in Panama, Menendez tells them that Hudson, Woods or Mason must die as payback for the murder of his sister three years ago. At first, Hudson is a bit hesitant, but in the end, he decides to sacrifice himself so that Woods and David can live. Menendez then uses a SPAS-12 to shoot Hudson's kneecaps and then slashes his throat with his pendant, killing him.
Many years have passed. On June 22nd, 2014, Menendez, using the alias "Ulysses", starts the Cordis Die political movement via social networks. The popularity of the group grows rapidly due to the charisma of Menendez. The main motive of Cordis Die appears to be crippling capitalist governments all around the world, the United States of America being their primary target. Almost immediately after the group’s inception and rise, Cordis Die members stage a violent uprising in Pyongyang and Tehran.
On November 3rd, 2020, Marion Bosworth is elected as President of the United States on a platform centered on strengthening ties with China.
In June, Cordis Die carries out an unprecedented cyberattack, targeting China’s stock market. The attacks severely cripple the world’s economy. The US is blamed for the hack. The US Government, realizing the power of Cordis Die’s social media, deletes the group’s official Twitter account. Members retaliate by assassinating the FBI director, burning him alive in his apartment.
On April 19th, 2025, David Mason and Mike Harper visit Woods for info on Menendez. They discover that his outfit is stationed in the Hkakabo Razi mountains. The next day, Mason and Harper stage an assault on the mountainside compound and discover plans for a cyber attack with potential ramifications even more substantial than the attack four years ago.
The following month, Mason, Harper, and Navy SEAL member Javier Salazar tap Menendez’s communication lines, seeking intel during his conversations with DeFalco, the leader of the Mercs. Their attempts are foiled, however, when their presence is somehow discovered by Menendez.
On June 12th, 2025, the United States discovers that Menendez is harboring a secret weapon named “Karma” on a floating city named Colossus. A week later, the CIA inflitrates Cordis Die, capturing Menendez in the process. Brought as a prisoner aboard the USS Barack Obama, Manedez is soon after liberated by Salazar, who has been working with Cordis Die as a Double Agent all along. Menendez hacks into a fleet of drones and uses them to remotely attack Los Angeles during the G20 Summit, which includes a number of prominent world leaders, including US President Bosworth. The timeline has several endings depending on which conditions the player fulfills over the course of the game.
If the player spares Menendez's life, completes all four Strike Force Missions, and both Chloe Lynch and Alex Mason survive the events of the game, the "best" ending will result. The player will have secured an alliance between China and the United States, ending the Second Cold War, Chloe's survival prevents Menendez's cyberattack from succeeding, and Mason's survival allows him to visit Frank Woods in retirement, reuniting with Section. The final scene shows Menendez in prison, watching a talk show with Jimmy Kimmel interviewing Chloe, becoming frustrated and enraged when Chloe insults him during the interview.
If Menendez is spared and Chloe dies, but Mason is alive, he will visit Woods in "The Vault". But Section will not come to "The Vault" and see his reunion with his father. Without Chloe, Menendez's cyber-attack will succeed and he will break out of the jail and kill Woods before committing suicide.
If Menendez is spared and Chloe lives but Mason dies, Menendez's Cyber-Attack will fail and he will rage because of the insult Chloe said to him and finally smashing the TV with his head. Section and Woods then will visit Mason's grave and Section will declare that he is done with his military career. This ending is similar to the best ending, but Mason won't reunite with Section since he is dead.
If Menendez is spared, Chloe is killed and Mason's fate is unresolved, Section will apprehend Menendez and take him into custody. The cyberattack will succeed, allowing Menendez to escape from prison. He kills Woods in The Vault before visiting his sister's grave, dousing himself in gasoline, and readying a lit match.
If Menendez is killed, Chloe's fate is unresolved and Mason is killed, Section will visit his father's grave, ending his military career. Menendez's followers will riot when they learn of his assassination from a video Menendez programmed to post in such an event, ending with a cut of the White House burning.
If Menendez is killed, Chloe's fate is unresolved and Mason lives, Section will kill Menendez before reuniting with his father at the retirement home, and Menendez's followers will riot as above.