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Customer Review

69 of 81 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a review on the campaign, multiplayer, zombies and combat training, November 18, 2012
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This review is from: Call of Duty: Black Ops II - PlayStation 3 (Video Game)
well, color me surprised.

after having been disappointed by the last couple of CoD games, i was hesitant to purchase black ops 2. a lot of the gripes and criticisms of black ops 1 and more particularly MW3, were wholly justified. but, being the sucker that i am, i forked over $60 because i love me a FPS and i really enjoyed combat training in the first black ops (more on combat training in a minute). after having spent nearly a week with the game, here's my verdict:

campaign - in short, it's a massive improvement over the last four CoD campaigns. i don't think it's stretch to say it's the best CoD campaign since CoD4. yes, it still looks dated (very dated, actually), but what it lacks in snappy graphics it makes up for in pure fun. all the trailers leading up the game led me to believe the campaign took place in the future. well, only about half the game takes place in the future. the other half takes place during the last days of the cold war. all the protagonists from BO1 are back and they all still speak like testosterone-happy alpha males (the franchise really, really needs legit writers who can write dialogue). however, the gunplay is what matters and that's where BO2 excels. first of all, you can customize your load out before you start every mission. it's a nice touch that allows you play your way. not all guns, attachments, camos, etc are available right off the bat (you have to unlock them like you do in the multiplayer), but it's a nice change. the campaign also gives you several choices in the game that will affect the outcome. this is practically unheard of in FPS games, so kudos to treyarch for mixing it up and bringing something new. each mission also has a series of ten challenges specific to that particular level. some of the challenges are fairly easy, but some are very challenging. and sometimes the only way to complete all the challenges is to replay the mission. the only part of the campaign i don't care for is the strike force missions (but that's probably because i suck at real time strategy games).

multiplayer - ah, the great love-it-or-loathe aspect to all call of duty games. i haven't played any CoD multiplayer since MW2. i got sick of the glitching, camping, obsession with killstreaks, etc. BO2 isn't a drastic departure from the formula, but it's a least an improvement. scorestreaks have replace killsteaks which encourages more team play. smart move. the maps are much improved, in my opinion, from BO1. in fact, there's not a map i don't care for. the sound design is 1000 times better. where in BO1 it sounded like you were shooting pop guns and peashooters (pew pew pew), the guns in BO2 are hefty, beefy and actually have some bass. they sound great. not BFBC2 great, but close enough. i haven't experienced all the freezing on my ps3 that many others have noticed, but the lag is absolutely horrendous. rubberbanding is non-stop, hit detection is often spotty, and with 650,000 people online at any given time, i'm not sure why it can take five or six minutes to get a game started. but, despite it's flaws, it's the most fun i've had on a CoD multiplayer since CoD4.

zombies - again, kudos to treyarch for not resting on their laurels and simply regurgitating past incarnations of this mode. sure, it's still zombies, but in addition to the tradition survival mode, you now have the tranzit mode and griefing mode. i haven't played too many zombie matches (i don't last long anyway when i do), but it's definitely fun and challenging.

combat training - honestly, combat training, for me, was the best part of BO1. sometimes i just want to kick back, practice, own the AI, play with a friend or two and not worry about having to listen to a bunch of hopped up pre-pubsecent, vulgar kids. combat training was the main reason i bought BO2. unfortunately, combat training as we knew it no longer exists. you can still set up bots and play games, but there's not combat training progression. i was really disappointed about that. all the guns and unlocks are available right from the beginning, which isn't a bad thing, but part of the fun of multiplayer and combat training is the ever-present allure of unlocks. on the positive side, all game modes are available in bot games (free for all, team deathmatch, kill confirmed, domination, headquarters, etc). i really wish there were a combat training progression, but you can't win them all.

all in BO2 is without a doubt the best all-around CoD game since CoD4, in my opinion. there's plenty to admire and my hat's off to treyarch for making a concerted effort to try something new. given CoD's popularity they certainly didn't have to do it, but that fact that they did earns my respect. just hire some better writers next time.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 23, 2013, 10:03:20 AM PDT
Thanks for the all around fair review. The player reviews on gamespot are totally obnoxious. Just a bunch of people complaining because the game wasn't exactly tweaked to their specific preferences. I gotta say that I am disappointed to know that you can't level up with the Combat Training, because like you, that was probably what I was looking forward to the most, but like you said, can't win them all. I've made the decision to buy this game overall along with the PS3 God of War Ascension bundle, so wish me luck! Happy gaming :)

In reply to an earlier post on May 23, 2013, 12:43:21 PM PDT
M. Lohrke says:
Best of luck to you! I hope you enjoy it.

Posted on Sep 15, 2013, 4:41:57 PM PDT
idommah says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 16, 2013, 3:17:56 PM PDT
M. Lohrke says:
cool story, bro!

Posted on Sep 22, 2013, 7:29:53 PM PDT
probably the most precise review I've ever read.. nice job
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