Written on: 18/05/2011 by martinrobinson (3 reviews written)
Call of Duty: Black Ops
The eagerly anticipated release of Call of Duty: Black Ops had big expectations to live up to from fans of the previous games. This these big expectations were mostly down to the success of the previous and fantastic game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. On its release Call of Duty: Black Ops exceeded these expectations and the best "shooter style" game of the year was born!
The single-player campaign mode is jam packed full of exhilarating and diverse game play. It grips the player with an intriguing story and intense excitement.
The story takes you back to the 1960s and is set in American Cold War locations such as Vietnam, Russia and Cuba. As the campaign begins you wake up strapped to a chair facing a bright window and the silhouette of two interrogators are visible. They speak to you through a voice distortion device and attempt to gain intelligence from you. Initially it is not clear who they are or what information they want from you. Following a brief conversation the interrogators try to make you recall your previous adventures as a soldier and you slip into a memory.
The various levels of the campaign are played as these memories and between each level is another short conversation with the interrogators.
Your adventures throughout the game form pieces of a mysterious puzzle. It becomes apparent further through the game that your secretive captors are trying to put the pieces of this puzzle together by interrogating you. The games missions slowly come together and add pieces to the puzzle.
Your flashbacks cover a wide variety of geographic locations and these environments are richly detailed.
In addition to carrying out missions on foot, you utilise a large number of vehicles to assist in your operations. These vehicles range from being in the gunner's seat of a 4x4 to flying a helicopter, whilst at the same time operating its weapons. You even have the excitement of taking charge of a gun boat in a very hostile Vietnamese river.
The vehicle handling is remarkable and there is no end to the thrill of blowing stuff up.
As this game is based on warfare in the 1960's the weapons reflect this. You wont be using all of the modern weapons that we are used to from the previous Call of Duty games. Instead you will become more accustomed to weapons such as an AK47 or even revolver style handguns!
The campaign continues with this flash back style game play including more clips of the interrogation room. I am not going to spoil the ending for you as the story really is interesting and rewarding when you reach the conclusion.
A disadvantage to this game in my opinion is that the campaign is just too short. In total it is only six hours long which was just enough time for me to get into it properly. I have to admit that I was a bit disappointed on day two of owning this game when the campaign was over!
Life after campaign?
My second favourite mode to campaign is the online multiplayer mode. On Call of Duty: Black Ops you can expect the usual mind blowing gaming experience you get with some of the previous games. The online pace is usually fast and brutal, especially if you are unfortunate enough to end up on a map full of stupidly hardened veterans! The only thing worse than this is playing on a map full of cowardly snipers who find cosy little hiding places to do a touch of camping and shoot you from miles away!
During online game play you earn experience for doing well in battle. As time goes on you will level up and gain access to new weapons and maps. You can also unlock kill streak rewards as you gain more experience which can be really effective.
An added feature to Black Ops is that you can now play online with a friend on one console. This puts the screen onto a split screen mode and of course you will both be on the same side during this. This new feature can be really effective as you can watch each others back and develop a strategy to help your team win.
Online game play on Black Ops has the usual modes such as "team death match" which can be played on the player match mode. This game also allows you to generate your own game for just yourself and your friends on the private match mode. Before playing online you can also practice against dummies on combat training. This mode is there to increase your skill before playing against experienced players online who usually have no mercy!
Zombies you say?
Yes, this game has an extra feature where the objective is to kill wave upon wave of zombies! On this mode you can play with up to four friends and earn cash for kills. This cash is used to buy better weapons and unlock new rooms. The game usually starts with just one or two available rooms to move around in and you have to constantly re board all the doors to slow down the waves of zombies. As you earn cash you can unlock extra doors leading into new parts of the level, freeing up some much needed space to avoid the zombies while you reload your weapon. This feature has an oddball humour about it as the situation is strange and one of the characters you can play as is American President JFK.
This game is absolutely amazing visually, especially if you are playing on a HD television with a HDMI cable connecting the Playstation to the TV. The colour and detail is vivid. The environment is heavily detailed and close ups of the faces reveal detail down to stubble and blinking/moving eyes. Another point I should make about this game is that I have found it to be a lot more brutal compared to the last Call of Duty games. I remember one particular level where I got a very clear and detailed view of my knife being thrust into a Vietnamese soldier whilst at the same time holding him under water. If I'm honest this even shocked me at first! Not to mention the missing limbs you will cause with a revolver whilst exploring Vietnamese tunnels. This game is branded with a well justified age 18 certificate.
Call of Duty: Black Ops is an exciting game with exceptional graphics. It is the best "first person shooter" game I have played to date and offers a heightened sense of realism compared to other similar games. It has a real "spit and sawdust" feel which is a bonus to a game of this type. The campaign is too short in my opinion but non the less this game gets a 10 out of 10 from me.
Thank you for reading.
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