Gamesplanet Review Round Up: Call of Duty: Black Ops III
It's that time of year again, the annual title in the Call of Duty franchise has been released. How does it fair?
This year it's the job of arguably the best studio tackling the COD series, Treyarch. Black Ops III is the third entry in the Black Ops story and takes place 40 years after the events of Black Ops II. Unlike Black Ops II though this is not a direct sequel, instead setting up a fresh story set in the year 2065 you play as either a Male or Female player who is teamed up with their Commanding Officer, Jacob Hendricks. Your job is yet another global affair taking place across multiple countries including Cairo, Singapore and Ethiopia. This time you're gvien advanced cybernetic upgrades which not only give you some new powers but also allow you to interact with machines. Other returning modes include the fast paced Multiplayer and the satisfying Zombie mode, both of which have received some impressive additions to make both better than ever.
Another round of Black Ops.
Let's see what the reviews had to say on the matter, GamesRadar+ rated the game with 4 out of 5 stars. They compared the story campaign to a Tom Clancy Novel, calling it predictable and a chore to play on your own. Campaigns in the Black Ops games have at most times been about putting on a show, it seems to do that but is best when played with others "It doesn't feel that way when you're rolling four deep with your buddies, turning robots into walking fireballs and making human combatants vomit up their breakfast with your techno-magic abilities". Zombie mode seems to be another favourite this time and was given a glowing response being compared to a Left 4 Dead type of expiernece, "with a colorful cast of inglourious bastards, richly detailed mid-century backdrop, and punishing difficulty, Zombies really comes into its own this time around".
IGN also enjoyed the selection of powerful new upgrades, each one seems to have a unique style so you have the choice to be up close and personal with the cloaking ability, go in guns blazing with a charge or use a ground pound to strike from above. Even more exciting is the fact you have abilities that let you cause even more mayhem, "Ignite enemies with the wave of a hand and set loose a swarm of bees." Multiplayer has been mixed up slightly, you have a choice of 9 specialists to pick from each one with their own power and weapon. You still have the same options in previous titles such as perks, weapon attachments and more but this time you're playing things a bit differently with the new thruster pack ability, "Fast battles can start at any time and from any angle". It was awarded a 9.2 out of 10, while it's not the best COD, it's the biggest and most feature-packed game of series.
Pay no attention to that screen in the corner.
GamesBeat rated it their highest COD title in the past few years, scoring it a 92 out of 100. Story comes together in a well paced manner with the cinematics and gameplay striking the perfect balance, "The acting is superb. Christopher Meloni is the voice actor for commander John Taylor, Katee Sackhoff is Sarah Hall, Sean Douglas is Jacob Hendriks, Rachel Kimsey plays Rache Kane, and Tony Amendola is Yousef Salim." Quite a few popular names to show up voicing characters, each one does a good job and doesn't outstay their welcome.
And closing us out we take a look at Destructoid which scored it 8.5. The big change from many of the previous titles is that this time during the campaign you can pick the levels in any order you want. Should you ever feel like a certain part of the game is boring or you just want to skip to the end, you can do that. You also have a hub center that let's you change your abilities, weapons and loadouts as well as the XP system give you plenty of freedom. "Charming - Not perfect, but it's easy to ignore the rough spots when faced with so many engaging design decisions and entertaining moments. A memorable game that's hard not to like and recommend to others." Game does feature quite a few additional modes beyond the Campaign, Multiplayer and Zombies mode such as the returning Dead Ops Arcade and the new Freerun mode which is somewhat like Mirror's Edge.
You and me buddy!
Overall it appears another strong entry in the Call of Duty library, a 6 hour campaign with the bang of a hollywood movie, an engaging multiplayer mode with over the top action and fast paced gun spraying, made even better this time around with the inclusion of specialist classes should improve matches as well as remove some of the stale of previous games. Also the fantastic addition of the thruster pack which adds an aerial edge not unlike last year's title Advanced Warfare definitely spices things up in all modes. Zombie mode seems to be yet another favourite (and perhaps the highlight of the game), perhaps the best Zombie mode to date - with even Jeff Goldblum voicing a character!
Love or hate Call of Duty titles, they may not be for everyone but should you feel the need to get together with some buddies and have a go on a rampage or undead zombies then why not do it in Black Ops III? There is bound to be a mode suited for you in the game, maybe you'll find one you like.
- Craig Bishop