If there was a game that could be classified as a controlled substance, Call of Duty would be that game; It’s digital crack. It seemed that after selling a gazillion trillion copies of Call of Duty, that Activision adopted a “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” philosophy. That is not the case with Black Ops II. This game is a total 360 from its predecessors.
Since Call of Duty is an annual franchise, I typically know what to expect, unlike the Halo franchise, which releases every 2-3 years. After indulging myself in a marathon of the Black Ops II multiplayer, I realized that it is nothing like what I expected, and for the first time in a long time the game shows serious growth.
Right off the bat, I noticed that the gameplay has a much slower tempo than Black Ops I or Modern Warfare 3 (MW3). The perks “Last Stand,” “Steady Aim” and “Sleight of Hand” have all been removed from the game, so now we don’t have to worry about someone going H.A.M and killing the entire team and reloading faster than you can blink. With last stand getting the boot, you don’t have to worry about someone getting cheap kills because you shoot them fifty times in the face and they don’t die. Since these perks are no longer in the game, that means that something else had to take its place. Besides “Toughness,” which allows you to flinch less when getting shot, most of the new perks are the pro version of perks from the previous games.
For those who are familiar with Call of Duty and its load outs, this is where Black Ops II shows its evolution with the new load out system called “Pick 10.” The objective of Pick 10 is to maintain a balance among load outs, so nothing is overpowered or underpowered, like in the previous Call of Duty games. Pick 10 gives you more customization options, so if you want an assault rifle with multiple attachments, six perks, and a shotgun with a grip, you got it. Just don’t expect to have any grenades at your disposal.
With E-sports becoming more and more popular, Treyarch decided to capitalize on this by adding League Play. This is where all the pros and wanna be pros, go to play on a serious competitive level – not just for sh*ts and giggles. One cool thing about this mode is that you will have the ability to stream you matches via YouTube straight from your Xbox 360 or Playstation 3.
The Multiplayer is still that crinack, but it’s not perfect. Bullets still magically go around corners, there are no vehicles, and a lot of animation looks dated. But the minor tweaks and upgrades in Black Ops II gives the multiplayer portion a new feeling, which brings it back to its fun and addictive roots. I feel sorry for the girlfriends and wives around the globe who probably won’t be seeing Breaking Dawn Pt 2 this weekend because of this game.
Black Ops II does not short you in the amount of chaos you can bring. With all the futuristic guns, this is nothing like i've seen in any other game. Two of the illest attachments for your gun is the Target Finder and the Millimeter Scanner, or MMS for short. The Target Finder scans the area and puts a red square around enemies, and the MMS is an X-ray scope. No matter if you’re the patient type who can sit back, chill and take somebody’s head off from across the map, or if you’re the Rambo type who sprays and prays, there is a gun for everybody.
Zombies are as synonymous with gaming as the Whopper is to Burger King. This is a mode that is a best played with friends. That’s where it shows its strength, and the dialogue between characters gives it a Planet Terror feel. So, before the Zombie apocalypse happens and all hell breaks loose, it’s best to get some practice in early.
Honestly, I didn’t even finish the campaign for MW3, it became too boring, and was predictable and linear. I was expecting the same thing for Black Ops II, but like the multiplayer I was wrong. When you first crank the game up, it gives you one of the most intense and emotional intros I’ve ever seen in a game. It starts off with a brother trying to save his sister in a warehouse fire, I’m not going to go into the details about it, but it made me want to turn up on whoever did it.
Black Ops II is set in both the 1980's and in 2025 (the Mayans were wrong). The main character in Black Ops II is David Mason, the son of the main character from the first Black Ops, Alex Mason. The storyline of both games are connected, so I suggest you play Black Ops 1 (plus Ice Cube is in the first game). Like any war game, you’re either trying to stop somebody from destroying the world or taking over the world, or both. In this case, it’s all about revenge. Remember the boy I mentioned earlier who was trying to save his sister from a house fire? His name is Raul Menendez and he hates the U.S.A. The fire wasn’t an accident: the American owner set the fire on purpose so he could claim the Insurance money, and the fire left his sister crippled. Since then, America and capitalism is that sh*t he don’t like.
The good thing about the campaign is that it allows you to take your own load outs into the mission. No more preset guns, so if you want to take a sniper throughout the whole mission, go for it, although the game does recommend the type of gun you should take on your mission. In no way, shape or form is this campaign linear, and everything that you do in the game has some type of impact later on or during the campaign – sometimes during the same mission. Besides Call of Duty 4, this campaign is the best one in the series. It's very well written, engaging, and it got my emotions involved. Any time a game gets your emotions involved it’s a winner. If Call of Duty: Black Ops II was a movie, it would clean up at the Oscars.