The third installment of the Black Ops series and the 12th volume in the Call of Duty series has landed. Call of Duty Black Ops 3 is another shooter set in the next era of war. The year is 2065, jet packs can be found in every neighborhood Walmart, and war is yet again ravaging the planet. As a big fan of CoD games, I’ll dive in to see how it ranks with past and present FPS games.
Blue Ball Score: 19 out of 25 balls
Another year goes by, and another CoD game hits the market. It’s a vicious cycle for the CoD fan base, as gamers feel obligated to purchase the latest version. Every year presents the same ol’, same ol’, with no major improvements and no major setbacks here. I personally noted a few minor improvements and setbacks based on past games, but overall you can expect much of the same in terms of gameplay and controls.
As with all futuristic games, the love-em-or-hate-em jetpacks are strapped to the back of every soldier. I was always a huge antagonist in the fight against these unnecessary devices. Perhaps my stance was due to my waning reaction time as my mind continues to age. I didn’t stand a chance against these young micky mouse club gamers who have the reflexes of a mountain lion. For example, in Advanced Warfare, the jetpack could bounce you around the screen like a pinball in an 80’s arcade and my fat thumbs just couldn’t keep pace. However, I found that the BO3 jetpack was much subtler and did not retract from overall gameplay.
One of the latest additions to the CoD franchise is the ability to wall run, and of course you can fire all phasers while wall running as well. Combine a wall run with a jetpack assisted jump and rain death on your enemies from above. These features create a new dynamic to the game that keeps the action frantic and fast-paced. Overall, the gameplay doesn’t take any major steps back and earns a 4/5 balls.
As I said earlier, the year is 2065 and Robocops are everywhere on the battlefield. Cybernetic soldiers are the norm with enhanced attributes and abilities. You’ll find plenty of futuristic technology throughout your missions in the form of weaponry and gear. As you play through each mission, your character will level up allowing you to unlock new gear and transform you into the arse-kicking soldier you always wanted to be. The technology eventually begins to run amuck and hilarity ensues. The BO3 campaign also features 4-player co-op to multiply the action on a grander scale.
It is easy to discern that the main focus was spent on multiplayer game modes, but that should be expected and rightfully so in my opinion. If you have higher expectations of the campaign, then you’re trying to get blood from a turnip and maybe gardening isn’t for you. The campaign is exactly what I expected, average at best, and earns 3 balls.
In regards to the maps, some are balanced while others would catapult off the scales. The spawn system seems to be designed against the all-mighty spawn trap, as enemies will quickly spawn directly behind you if your team is holding position on the map. This proved to be extremely frustrating for my team that is used to winning through map control. However, with any new release of CoD, it’s adapt your play style or suffer the consequences. My suggestion would be to stay moving and circle around the map. If you stop and hold ground against a single direction, you are certain to be shot in the back.
Weapons are exactly as you would expect. Most are just average with the exception of a few that have yet to be hit by the nerf gun. I personally have always been an LMG man. Give me tons of bullets to spray in rapid succession and watch as the blood spills. However, I have to say that the Razorback would be my choice for the best overall weapon. It has the power/range of an assault rifle combined with the speed/fire rate of an SMG. It’s like Frankenstein’s creation if the monster spit out deadly projectiles. My only beef with weapons are the weapons that can be obtained through “supply drops” which can be purchased by earning in-game cryptokeys after each match. These weapons are HIGHLY overpowered and can only be obtained through a game of chance, so let’s hope you’re lucky.
With several fresh additions to create new dynamic gameplay, the CoD multiplayer experience remains strong. However, a few lingering issues such as the microphone Russian Roulette (unplugging/plugging in your mic repeatedly in an attempt to hear all of your friends), leave the online experience with 4/5 balls.
Seriously though, your favorite zombie game mode is here and continues to deliver to all the brain eaters out there. Thrilling, suspenseful, and adrenaline rushing can be used to describe the zombie gameplay that fans have come to know and love. Fight off waves of the undead with increasing difficulty and growing numbers with each round. As you progress (or IF you progress), their taste for flesh will become insatiable as they swarm you at every turn. If you were wise, you would hit up that pack-a-punch before you serve your brains on a blood-stained platter. If you are a zombie fan, you will find that BO3 zombies will provide the fun experience that you have been trained to expect. If you are new to the zombie game mode, you will likely have a hard time adjusting to the style as ratio for learning curve to difficulty level is steep. Try to find a veteran zombie player to help guide you through the basics, and you’ll have a much better time. Zombies gets a 4.5 brain-flavored balls out of 5.
In conclusion, BO3 provides an all-around solid performance. As with any CoD game, patches and updates will be released to fix many of the glaring issues. The multiplayer experience will continue to be balanced with minor buffs and nerfs as time goes on. For now, BO3 receives a grand total of 19 balls.