Call Of Duty – Black Ops

Posted: July 1, 2011 in Gaming

Why COD?

COD Black Ops for the PS3

For all the hype that surrounds this series, and mainly the negativity generally aimed towards “COD fanboyz”, I decided to give this game a go on my shiny new White PS3 Slim.  Originally made using the Quake 3 engine, the game has spawned multiple sequels and now uses it’s own IW Engine – although looking at the game’s dated graphics it certainly made me wonder what they had actually improved over the years (admittedly I have only vague memories the first and second in the series). 

This is my first entry to the blogosphere so I may be rather long-winded as I test out WordPress, generally I’m more a fan of quick, to-the-point reviews!

For the Casual Gamer

Before I continue I have to admit that I have played and completed Killzone 2 as well as Crysis 2 within the last couple of weeks, so it seems a little unfair to compare COD to them.  It is hardly in the same league really – and that is the point.  This game is clearly aimed at the casual gamer – as here casual clearly means a gamer with absolutely no taste or gaming history whatsoever.  Having said that, I can certainly appreciate the lengths they have gone to to make this game “awesome” and easy to play, I was genuinely excited by some of the locations and situations I found myself in, but this was somewhat marred by the fact that there was always some dude telling me exactly what I was seeing: “AVALANCHE!! AAAh!” cue whiteness, shaky screen and me running blindly towards the location marker, “SPETNATZ ATTACK!”, cue black-clad dudes who move and fight exactly the same as everyone else, except perhaps they roly-poly viciously at you if you so much as look at them.   The game never got tired of telling me “LOOK AT AWESOME STUFF IT’S AWESOME”, except unfortunately it isn’t as awesome as they say, with most scenes being so poorly rendered it was lucky they told me what was going on after-all – or I would have just been stood there spinning in circles.

What about the GAMEPLAY?

The phrase “run & gun” really does this game justice, as you literally run forward and shoot throughout the whole game, whilst occasionally taking part in a couple of QTE’s.  Zooming in or using your ironsights generally pretty much allows you to lock-on to your targets so there is little need for aim – especially since your enemies generally go down in 1-2 hits.  Of course, COD allows you to turn off this “auto-aim” feature and I appreciated that it has at least some level of customisation.  In fact, if I was to compare it to any recent game I have played, it would have to be Heavy Rain, mainly because the amount of gameplay you actually control is incredibly low.  At least it runs at 60 fps, which is great and gives nice and responsive control, and certainly better than Killzone’s laggy gun-play.

Unfortunately I can’t comment on the multiplayer – mainly because China doesn’t have PSN (officially) and if I wanted to play FPS online then I would have to be playing on PC.

Verdict

Graphics don’t mean everything, but they mean a lot when your gameplay is below-average too.  If you want multiple hours of brainless, non-stop action with great graphics, fun weapons and great offline multiplayer – buy Killzone 2.  If you want something better in nearly every (single-player!) aspect, buy Crysis 2.  If you see Black Ops in the bargain bin for $5-6, you might just get your money’s worth.

5/10