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[Hands-On] Call of Duty: Black Ops

Written by: jpopsicle on 18 November 2010 at 6:00 am No Comment

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While Modern Warfare 2 was a slight disappointment, mainly due to its over-the-top storyline, the wearing off of the novelty of the original Modern Warfare and its very short single player campaign, I can safely say that Black Ops is a gorgeous return to the previous high standards.

The story is engaging and the action is intense right from the start. The graphic is what is expected of new generation consoles with great environments and lighting for each major set piece that help immerse you into the thick of things.

Granted, the game is not without its short-comings. For one, the campaign mode is at about 6 hours, which is similar to Modern Warfare 2. And if you have played the previous installments, the linear cinematic sequences may feel a little familiar. Some gamers even mentioned that in the stage where you are supposed to guide the plane for take off, the plane will fly even if you do not input the on-screen commands.

The sense of weariness of having to shoot waves after waves of enemies to get to the next objectives continue to mount with each FPS released in the market. Though this is lessen somewhat by the variations of weapons and the different stages.

The biggest bug of all is perhaps at the Vietnam stage where you are supposed to help hold the enemies off from an ammo point, but the game fail to provide the necessary objectives to advance from the stage. After shooting an endless wave of soldiers from my cover, I got impatient and discovered by chance that you are supposed to head down the slope. For those of you who may be stuck, you need to run up to the barrels and hit the action button when it is indicated on screen to light the trenches on fire.

Despite all these glitches, Black Ops is a solid game that is fun and exciting. The story adds a lot of realism and you feel a stronger sense of attachment to the characters unlike in previous installments.

So imagine the shock I felt when Gamasutra reported that Modern Warfare 3 will be based on a future setting with “Space Marines”. Realism has been a big part of COD’s success. The departure from the World Wars to enable access to modernized weaponry and vehicles is a much welcome one that set the tone for the new era of FPS. Will a space FPS share similar resonance?

We do have Master Chief already you know?

If you are looking for something that will redefine FPS like Modern Warfare did, you will not find it here. But you will definitely get a great FPS experience.

I am not a big fan of FPS multiplayers so I have not tried the online modes. However, from what I have read, the game is properly balanced and quite addictive.

I guess in that sense, it is not surprising that the game’s community manager Josh Olin actually tweeted “Am I getting solid intel? Is there really almost 1,000,000 players on Xbox Live right now??”. Yes, that is 1 million Xbox Live players within the first 24 hours. There are still the Playstation 3 and PC players.

All in all, Black Ops is a solid effort and provides great continuity to the Call of Duty franchise. The crown of FPS is for now safe, but next year’s installment will definitely have even bigger shoes to fill.

Source(s): Gamasutra, Eurogamer

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