Call of Duty: Black Ops III is not so much an evolution as it is a brilliant refinement of the groundwork laid by Advanced Warfare. But fear not, my friend, developer Treyach have thrown in some new elements that will change the way you look at a Call of Duty campaign and keep you hooked in the next stage of it’s multiplayer.
Set forty years after the events of Black Ops II robotics and science have merged to create super soldier cyborgs, one of which you will get to control as a member of the Black Ops Team. The Exo abilities we had in Advanced Warfare now seem like training for Black Ops III. Jumps are higher, slides are longer and we now have something called “Cyber Abilities”. These enable you to do more tactical things like hijack an enemy’s walking battle tank. In Advanced Warfare you could stop someone’s Exo-Abilites, Black Ops III? You can stop an entire person by locking up the technology inside them making them an easy target or just putting someone on pause while you deal with something else.
You can now play the campaign with up to four players in co-op as Treyach claim they are “taking you off the rails” with many ways to take on each section of the campaign. Choice seems to be the buzzword for this Call of Duty with character personalisation being taken to a much deeper level. We have been promised a new way to customise your weapons which all lead to being able to create the sort of character that suits your play style! Gone are the much derided sections where you get a fancy new weapon or ability for one section of the campaign only to have it snatched away later, if you haven’t earned it yet you just don’t have it. But don’t worry, by adding this customisation Treyarch have had to adapt the AI to account for it. The games systems will look at who is in your team and what level their character is as well their load out to judge how difficult the enemies will be and what tactics they will use.
Multiplayer, of course, is still where the Call of Duty series lives and dies and Treyarch haven’t slacked in this area. With the new movement systems come new maps which are designed around it to add fluidity and control as you play. The training wheels of Advanced Warfare’s Exo suits are off, as Treyarch focus on chaining speed and precision in to what they are calling the ultimate competitive multiplayer experience. Beyond just boost jumping we now have wall running, something innovated for the first person shooter by Titanfall, but here it looks so much smoother. The customisation we see in the single player of course carries over here, the before mentioned weapon creation will feature as well as the ability to create your own paint jobs for them. Now, this is a very interesting move as Call of Duty has traditionally made these sorts of paint jobs something you’d have to pay for. It’s a very player friendly move on the part of Activision and Treyarch and something we’d like to see continue!
There are a few things that makes Black Ops one of the fan favourites in the Call of Duty series, and Zombies has to be right up there. Treyarch have promised that a new version of Zombies will appear on the disc when Black Ops III launches. We hope it will go back to the more tense, atmospheric routes of it’s original and steer clear of some the more sci-fi elements seen in Ghosts’ Extinction and Advanced Warfare’s Exo Zombies. Black Ops II was also the first game in the series to offer branching narrative paths, meaning you could choose which way you wanted the plot to develop. This hasn’t really featured again since Black Ops II so we’re hoping III takes this mechanic and runs with it!
Call of Duty: Black Ops III looks set to breathe further life in to the series, picking up with the great job done in Advanced Warfare. We can’t wait to get our hands on this one!