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Good But A Step Back For The Series.

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    Call of Duty: Black Ops 4

    Rating: 4.0 – Great

    Good But A Step Back For The Series.

    The latest in the popular Call of Duty series has arrived with Call of Duty: Black Ops IIII. The game has made the controversial decision to forgo the traditional campaign in favor of a Battle Royale mode known as Blackout and a more expansive online experience which includes more Zombie modes and a greater emphasis on gameplay.

    I played the game first at E3 and then again during the Beta phases for the game so I had a decent familiarity with what to expect when the full release version of the game arrived.

    After several days of playing the game, I have to say it is to me a mixed bag and many aspects of it disappointed me which is very frustrating as fan of the series since the very first game.

    The look and feel of the game does not come across to me as a new game but instead to me look and play like DLC for Call of Duty: Black Ops 3. Many of the maps seem familiar and have been updated from their appearances in previous games. The same holds true for the weapons and kill streaks. I am not saying it is not fun, but it all has a sense of having seen most of it before.

    Another very annoying change to the game is the severe limitation of grenades in the game. Usually a player has a grenade option which comes in handy when Snipers setup behind cover. Without the ability to lob a grenade to get Snipers out from cover, players are easy pickings, especially when the first appear on the screen. You can unload a full clip into a player at a distance and still end up dead with one shot from a sniper. As such you have to wait until you reach level 42 in order to add them to your customized loadout and even then they are very Nerfed from what players have come to expect.

    The multiplayer modes are what you have come to expect as there are the Team Deathmatch variations as well as the Capture and Control modes and a new mode called Heist where players need to capture or prevent the capture of a target.

    For me the most enjoyable aspect of the game was the Zombie modes as not only were the players I was matched with usually very helpful, but they were also much friendlier than many of the other people I encountered.

    The Blackout mode is very popular with gamers but not being a fan of the One and Done mode of play, I found myself enjoying the vast details of the map and preferring to work with a team, capturing vehicles, and such. I have seen multiple players unload point blank on a player in this mode only to see them walk away and one shot kill their attackers. This is either a hack or an example of how imbalanced things can be at times and you will see multiple instances of players taking numerous hits and walking away while others go down with one shot.

    Black Ops IIII does not have a regenerative health system and instead requires players to use a timed injection in order to restore health.

    This is all designed to foster teamwork and to make the game more appealing to the eSports community. While this is nice, it deviates from much of what has made the game so appealing from the start.

    The game to me seems like it was hurried to market as it released on October 12th vs the traditional November release date. I am sure a big part of this was a desire to beat Red Dead Redemption 2 to market but in doing so it seems that things are missing from the final product.

    There is much to like about the game as it is still an exciting and intense experience but to me is the first Call of Duty game to not feel shiny and new but instead more of the same in many cases.

    The developers have supported the game with numerous updates and there are more on the way as well as planned DLC down the road so the game as it is now is likely to change in the next few months as more feedback is given to developers and new features are added.

    Hopefully they will also look to add a campaign at a later date as although it is fun, it seems lacking and dated in many aspects as the changes seem like a step back to me rather than progress.

    4 stars out of 5

    Skewed and Reviewed

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