Thursday, November 22nd, 2012 by Nick Maunders
Call of Duty: Black Ops II is probably the most highly anticipated games of the Call of Duty series if not for the entire year. With all the trailers and leaks of information that have happened in the past couple of months, it’s hard not to realise that this game looks better than ever. Of course with all the tonnes of new features some old things you perhaps enjoyed from the previous Black Ops game such as Dead Ops Arcade is no longer featured in the new game. But fear not! For the new features of the game far outweigh anything left behind, and you can always play classic arcade games for real money elsewhere.
So is it as good as the original Black Ops? Is it better than Modern Warfare 3? Now as many of you may know although Call of Duty is a single series it’s developed by numerous different companies. The main ones are Treyarch which have developed World at War, Black Ops and Black Ops II most recently, and Infinity Ward which have developed Modern Warfare 1, 2 and 3. Now for me personally, I’ve always enjoyed and thought that the Treyarch developed games have been a lot better than any of the Modern Warfare games. They’ve always seemed to have more features and more enjoyable content in them – although the new addition to Modern Warfare 3 last year of the survival games and the multiplayer almost human-zombie like mode was definitely a step in the right direction. Of course nothing can really compare to the original zombie mode developed by Treyarch and this really makes Black Ops II stand out from the crowd.
Who’d have thought that just a little added in bonus of single zombie map at the end of the World at War campaign mode would turn into something so massive? The developers certainly didn’t think so! But it has! The mode got an additional 3 maps in World at War and then an extra healthy potion of basically double that in Black Ops. So what’s new for the zombies in Black Ops II I hear you ask? Well quite a lot actually! Huge news to start with for all the fans: Due to engine for the zombie mode now being switched to a multiplayer engine 8 player online is now possible. Yes 8 people! And with double the people you know what that means right? Double the amount of zombies as well! If you thought there was a lot of them in a 4 player match you haven’t seen anything yet. As well as doubling the online experience Treyarch have also very kindly doubled the offline experience as well, you can now play 4 player split screen offline zombies. Although this may not be the best selection if you have a small screen and may leave your console lagging slightly with all of the processing it needs to do for four people – but, it can still be a very fun experience if you’ve got 3 friends round and want something different to normal multiplayer for a change.
Speaking of the multiplayer mode – just wow. In all fairness I didn’t play multiplayer much on Modern Warfare 3, but I certainly did on the original, and my how much has changed! There’s so much to choose from but let’s start with kill-streaks shall we. Well kill-streaks don’t really live up to their name completely anymore because for the first time you can technically get your kill-streak rewards without having to make a single kill! Instead of saying that a UAV is worth say 3 kills it’s now worth a number of points 350. It makes sense therefore that they’re now called scorestreaks right? I think this is a great addition to the game because it’s making it so you don’t have to go all out for kills and forget about other parts of the game such as capturing a base in domination etc. Of course if you want to just go all out for just kills then please do, you haven’t been restricted or had anything taken away from you in that respect, it’s just now you can earn rewards for simply completing objectives as well as kills.
Another part of the multiplayer that has greatly changed is the new create a class system. It’s been completely redesigned into a new 10-point system. What does that mean? Well each object say in your class is worth a point. Your primary weapon, secondary weapon, attachments, perks, grenades, and tactical grenades: all of these are worth one point each. And basically as you’d expect you can only have a total of 10 of them. Why would you need 10 though you might ask? Two weapons, an attachment for each, 3 perks and a grenade and tactical grenade are only 9 points. This is where the wildcards come into play. Wildcards are completely new to the game, they also count as a point and they improve your class in many different ways. Perk 1 Greed is one wildcard for example. This wildcard lets you have 2 perks from the first category. So if you added this to your previous class you’d now have 11 points which is too much! So you’d have to get rid of maybe an attachment or another perk etc. This new feature really lets you design your class exactly how you want too.
Does anyone remember Wager Matches from the first game? Games such as Gun Game and One in the Chamber were always personal favourites of mine and gambling your hard earned points for more was always a great addition. Of course now CODpoints have been excluded from the game so Wager Matches have been renamed as Party Games. Don’t worry though if gambling is your thing why not head over to Paddy Power Games. For me, I think the deduction of the CODpoints makes the game that much better, and so with no points to win in the Party Games you win XP instead.
Of course we can’t really forget about the single player campaign mode of the game can we, and in this case it’s rather different than usual. The story actually takes place across two separate time lines: One following events in the 1980s and the other in the year 2025. The switching between the years really mixes up the game and makes it much more pleasant to play. Also new to the mode are some special missions known as ‘Strike Force’ – this for me really shows how much can be done in games these days. The mode has two ‘views’. Basically you control a team – be it soldiers, turrets, machines etc and have to complete an objective. Doesn’t sound anything special yet does it? Well you’d be wrong. You can start the mode off in the bird’s eye view seeing all of your team members and machines as well as the enemy. Here’s where things get rather amazing, by selecting any part of your team you can go down and control them. If you select a solider you go straight down and can round around the area etc, selecting a turret puts you in control of it, and the same can be said for any machines you have. These missions are really new and inventive and can give you the best of both worlds of playing from a commander’s point of view or just as your ordinary soldier.
So all in all there are still loads of new features for Black Ops II out there and they’re all in my opinion a great addition to the already brilliant game. If you haven’t got this yet I would seriously recommend playing it. In the past I’ve always looked at shooting games with disapproval but this game really makes you think and plan strategies and everything. It has to be the best one of the series so far!