By BRIAN HARNISH
On Oct. 12, “Call of Duty: Black Ops 4” was released. Many gamers hopped on their gaming console of choice to download the game. What they weren’t ready for was a 50-gigabyte download that took approximately two hours. I would check every couple of minutes for it to be done but would walk back to my TV utterly disappointed.
Admittedly, at first, I was incredibly skeptical about how this game would turn out if it would be a hit or miss. The “Call of Duty” franchise was feeling increasingly stale. With each new game released, it felt as if they copied and pasted the same game and just repainted everything in it. Once it finally downloaded, I was pleased to see that on this game, Activision utterly outdid themselves.
The title features more game-modes, settings and ways to customize the game than any previous games produced in the “Call of Duty” franchise. The intense new Blackout mode steals the spotlight of the Battle Royale game type, overshadowing “Fortnite” and “PlayerUnknown’s Battleground” (PUBG). When “Black Ops 4” came out, the other popular Battle Royale games most likely lost a significant portion of their players.
My friends and I have been so engrossed in this fun, fast-paced game type that we haven’t even thought about going back to other games as of yet, packaging it into a polished, powerful entry to the growing genre. The multiplayer felt slick and well designed. While many things remained the same, it felt as if it were presented in a new light with better graphics and a better storyline incorporated into it.
The way the multiplayer feels is drastically different after just a few matches, revealing a more tactical game with a focus on playing as different “specialists” that can affect the game in different ways. Each player gets a character to choose known as a specialist. These specialists aren’t custom classes, and their unique abilities are not killstreaks. Both of those exist in the game in addition to the specialist system, and in fact, the specialist abilities are closer to equipment.
While the previous “Black Ops” did hold specialists, they have never impacted the game in this way before. The specialist the player chooses can define the way the game is played. Are you into sitting behind a barrier, tactically holding off different portions of the map and deploying your team cover? The new specialist Torque is just the character for you. This is just one of the 10 specialists that come in the game that you can play.
Specialists have access to tools like trip-mines, grenade launchers, ballistic shields and even an adorable attack dog- loveable right until you’re on the wrong end of his bite. While it is clear that this game has been influenced by others such as “Overwatch,” it has kept its distinct “Call of Duty” feel.
Zombies is a labyrinth of confusion and despair, nearly too complicated for even the smartest humans, but for groups that can find someone that understands the interlinking systems and techniques or, perhaps, read the wiki while playing, this may be one of the best zombies “Call of Duty” has produced. You can also play with bots who prove themselves as surprisingly intelligent allies if you can’t seem to find a group.
This game took a bold step in not including the beloved single player missions, and if you’re willing to forsake the single player mode that all previous “Call of Duty” games had, this game is very much worth it.