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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: Activision
Developed By: Treyarch
Genre: First-Person Shooter
Players: 1-4 (2-16 Online)
Rated: M for Mature (Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language)
Release Date: November 9, 2010
Screenshots: Link
Amazon: Buy Now!
Written By: Marcus Prunty

November 12, 2012 - The Call of Duty franchise is one of the most heralded in the first person shooter genre. So when the announcement of a new game for the franchise comes around itís always a major event and thereís a lot of hype and expectations that come with it. Will the multiplayer be amazing? Or better then Modern Warfareís? What about the campaign; will it be engaging and keep you on your toes dying to play more to see what happens? These are all questions that are in the back of your mind but are unspoken due to the major popularity of the franchise so most fans just KNOW it will be great.

The single-player campaign takes place during the 1960ís and takes you to various Cold War areas from Cuba to Russia and even Vietnam. As a covert operative you have been enlisted to do a lot of Black Ops missions, which as you watch the mission objective screen you see most of the information is redacted and leaves you with usually the name of the place and the person you need to find or take out and the date. You have been captured and there trying to jog your memory by making you relive the missions you have done to put the pieces together. There is several interrogation cutscenes that make you think what the hell has this guy done? Confusion runs rampant as youíre playing the game and thanks to the cutscenes, you are always wondering what going on? Why do these guys have him? Itís this sense of intrigue that hooks you in.

As usual in a Call of Duty game the missions arenít too linear and there is a tendency for some globe-trotting for the various missions you undertake. Not only is the usual running and gunning, dodging bullets as they are whizzing by your head a part of the gameplay, itís a way of life. Not only are you the gunner in some missions, but in others youíre the driver and being able to blow things up while youíre speeding through the area is always a great thing. While there is lots of fun to be had playing the single player campaign, it wonít take up much of your time as I was able to beat it on Veteran in about 8-9 hours. Thatís decent for a Call of Duty Game but would love to see the campaign extended out a bit longer.

The place where most players will spend their time, often skipping the single-player campaign all together, is the competitive multiplayer. This is what everyone will be playing for months on end until the next Call of Duty game comes out. Heck they may still play it even then; itís that good. As you level up in the multiplayer you get your usual better weapons and other perks to make your load-outs that much better. The coolest thing I liked was one of the killstreak rewards that you can get; itís a remote control car that explodes. Instead of just getting experience points you also earn Call of Duty points which you can use to purchase perks, attachments for your weapons, killsteaks and other equipment. Guns are still tied to your level so as you level up you will unlock different, more powerful weapons. The point system is crucial to your effectiveness on the battlefield so racking up as many points as you can is almost as important as the XP.

There are 2 new mode within multiplayer and adds sort of gambling system which has interesting scenarios if your game to risk those precious COD points. There are Contracts and Wager matches. In the Contract matches you play against the house so to speak as there are missions where you pony up some COD points for the possibility of earning more. For example for 50 points thereís a ďstab a guy in the backĒ contract if you do this in the allotted time then you will earn 100 points so you make 50. There are even harder Contracts which you have to put more of your points up but they have massively higher payouts like getting 5 headshots without dying will get you 3500 COD points and XP for just risking 250 of your points.

The Wager matches are gambling against the other players you can do. You pay an entry fee to get into the match and can be as low as 10 points or as high as 10,000 just depend on how much you have and are willing to risk. This mode tends to have way more variety to the gameplay. One of the matches that I liked was one where as you kill more people you get better weapons after each kill, which I found that one to be fun. In the Wager matches however much is in the pot is split between the top 3 people and everyone else gets nothing. If youíre looking for variety Wager matches are where itís at but if your skills arenít the best you may want to avoid them so you donít lose all your points.

And last but not least you cannot forget the Zombies. I know people who only want to compete within the 4-player co-op zombie mode. The frenzied action is fun and addicting as wave after wave of zombies are coming after you. Its gets monotonous after a while of playing but people just love mowing down zombies and I am one of them. I also like the fact that itís a co-op mode and isnít everyone for themselves, although that could have been fun too.

I have noticed that there are people that are great at the multiplayer and people who get owned a lot. Black Ops has included a Combat Training mode that simulates the multiplayer but without other people. Itís just you and the AI and the difficulty can be set to your skill level. You unlock guns and gear and get XP just like in the multiplayer but all the stuff you unlock and the XP you receive is only available to you in the Combat Training mode so you canít boost in there and then go into the actual multiplayer leveled up with better weapons. They also added a new social aspect with Theater mode which allows you to watch your gameplay in multiplayer and even take screen caps and edit clips from different games together that you can then share to the web.

The visuals for the game are highly detailed and vary greatly. From missions that you infiltrate mountain bases, to firefights in the cities. The deaths and mayhem is always great to watch as you experience the Cold War era. The addition of stereoscopic 3D if you have the equipment for it makes everything pop and is a nice plus. But if you donít have the equipment the visuals looks just as good.

Call of Duty Black Ops is a welcome game in the COD franchise. From the great variety of multiplayer matches and perks that can be earned. The addition of Call of Duty points which can be spent on upgrades or even gambled with in contract and wager matches is a nice added feature. And if you tire of all these modes grab some friends and go kill some zombies. With the addition of Combat Training people with less skill or who just donít want to play against other players can get the feel of the competitive multiplayer without all the harassment. Visually, this is a pretty good game though you may have the occasional pop in of an ally or wall walkthrough; itís not enough to take you out of the experience. The campaign is a bit short but most people buy these games for the multiplayer. If you havenít already played this game I suggest you get it the story in engaging and different than what your use to from Call of Duty and am sure you will enjoy it.


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