Activision has released the latest installment in the Call Of Duty franchise. Another year brings another futuristic shooter. Many gamers wish CoD would go back to the roots of past wars and drop the whole futuristic approach. How can you blame them after the horrendous attempt that was Advanced Warfare? And for the record, I’m a CoD fan and more importantly I’m a fan of great games in general. I believe that the futuristic settings hold a ton of potential for video games, but only if it is implemented correctly. So how does the laser light show that is Infinite Warfare stack up? Check out the full details below!
Blue Ball Score: 18 out of 25 balls
If you’ve played one Call Of Duty, you’ve played them all! They are like the partner in every relationship you’ve ever had, where they will never change. Not for you. Not for anybody. They are who they are, and that’s what CoD is these days. Now that’s not to say that more of the same is a bad thing. If you’re a fan of the CoD formula, you’ll certainly fall in love with Infinite Warfare. Double that expectation if you enjoyed Black Ops 3. CoD Infinite Warfare is practically a cookie-cutter. Add a splash of new graphics, re-skin the characters/maps, throw in a few new weapons and… Ta-da!!! Infinite Warfare dude!!!
The controls are exactly the same as BO3. Wall-running, sliding, jumping, shooting, it’s all the standard control scheme. Overall, the gameplay mechanics are the same as well. You have rigs (or “specialists” if you are familiar with BO3) that have special weapons or abilities that charge during gameplay. The new additions certainly help vary gameplay, but as always a few of them can be a little overpowered. This is to be expected as the developers continue to tweak every aspect of the game to create balance.
Infinite Warfare brings back the weapon variants. Personally, I’m not a fan of the variants. They are usually obtained at random via the supply drops, so it is basically a luck game in terms of obtaining the more powerful variants. Epics/Legendary variants add new abilities to your weapons to increase firepower, range, or even give you a 25-kill streak option for a nuke! Needless to say, those lucky enough to find themselves with the higher variants are typically at an advantage. It’s not a HUGE advantage, but an advantage nonetheless. This offsets the balance at times, but not enough to ruin it.
More of the gameplay that CoD players have come to know and love earns 4 balls.
The in-space battles can be very frantic at times. Lots of action will keep your fingers moving and your nerves at peak sensitivity. The proverbial dog fights with the “ace pilots” can be very intense. The game provides a lock-on mechanism that can assist when tracking down an enemy pilot. You will often find yourself dodging debris and/or other ships as you chase down the other crafts which makes for an interesting experience. It can be slightly disorienting and overwhelming at times, but overall it plays well.
While Call Of Duty Infinite Warfare gives you a glimpse at a possible future, the story is still fairly dry and just sort of “meh”. I loved how the ship was the command center and you had the option to choose your missions. However, the story just didn’t deliver enough of shock and awe. Yes it was cool to see the futuristic elements. Yes the campaign brought you to various places throughout the solar system. Yes the power of pinesol is overwhelming. None of this fixes the fact that the campaign was less than average. I understand that CoD has always been a “multiplayer first” game, but I still expect better from a heavy-hitter like Infinite Warfare.
The space battles were not enough to carry a strong score. 3.5 balls to a lightweight single player.
A new game brings new weapons, scorestreaks, and abilities. Infinite Warfare separates weapons into two main classes: energy weapons and ballistic weapons. Energy weapons shoot… Yep you guessed it, energy! It shoots frickin’ lasers man! Energy weapons introduce a new twist with reflections. Your laser shots will now ricochet off most surfaces and can help kill enemies who duck behind cover. Hope you nerds paid attention in geometry class! Ballistic weapons are your traditional gunpowder & bullet weaponry. One thing I noticed was that bullet penetration has been heavily adjusted in this game. It is almost impossible to shoot through any surface without having FMJ equipped. The lack of penetration promotes the use of head glitching and improves the overall importance of taking cover.
For those familiar with the specialist setup in BO3, you will quickly notice their new replacements, the Combat Rigs. RIgs are equipped with a payload (a special weapon or ability) and a trait (an always-on perk). The weapons and abilities require a charge before use. Rig weapons can typically be used twice in the average game. A good game can squeeze three uses and a bad game might only get one use. The abilities charge must faster and get more uses as a result. The traits are fairly minor and don’t provide any major impact to the game. However, they do have their uses.
Overall, it’s a very balanced system that works well. All new CoD games require adjustments to your gameplay style to fit the new scheme. Once you get used to the new mechanics, you’ll realize that it’s very good out-of-the-box. The spawn system will need several tweaks, but you should expect that with any fresh first-person shooter game. Another year ushers in another great multiplayer experience and earns 4.5 balls.
Sound is decent enough. As with any first-person shooter, the guns and explosions need to make you feel as if you have boots on the ground in the middle of the battlefield. Call of Duty Infinite Warfare gives you just enough to pull you into the mix but not enough to fully immerse you in the experience. Sound quality is a bit flat at times in both the campaign and multiplayer. Again, it’s not enough to derail the experience entirely, but it’s certainly noticeable.
Good graphics and sound earn 4 balls.
In conclusion, this is another great installment into the Call Of Duty franchise. The Battlefield fans will hate, just the same as the CoD fans will hate on Battlefield. It’s just the way of the video gaming world. I choose not to hate on the other and believe that it’s just a matter of personal preference. Call of Duty Infinite Warfare earns a total score of 18 balls.