[17+] Call of Duty: WWII Review
(SP + MP)

Intro:

To many people, a year is not complete unless they have played the Call of Duty game that comes out that year. I am one of them. There are exceptions, though. But that's not what we are gonna talk about today. I have been looking forward to this game since it was leaked. After playing through the campaign and prestiging 3 times in multiplayer, I think I have formed a relatively clear view for this game and thus I would like to share it with you, in case you are hesitating about getting the game, or just want to find something about the game to read.

Single Player:

I know it sounds weird, but I do enjoy the mysterious feeling about Black Ops 3 campaign, even though I am still not crystal clear about what the story is all about. This campaign is much simpler and more straightforward compared to that one. Therefore, if you do not like to think too much and just want to enjoy a movie-like experience when playing through the campaign, this one may be for you.

[Heavy Spoilers Start Here]

The campaign starts with D-Day. You are "Red" Daniels (mainly), a soldier in 1st Infantry Division. Right next to you are several your buddies: Zussman, Stiles and Aiello. And then there is Pierson, the Sergeant that never satisfies with what you have done. Luckily, you also have Lieutenant Turner, who always tries to protect all his men as much as possible.

The story goes on from D-Day to Paris Liberation, to Aachen invasion, to Battle of the Bulge and finally, to Rhine. There are multiple turning points during the campaign. First, it is Turner's death, then Pierson's "mission over man" is fully expressed. After that, it is Zussman being captured by Nazi and thrown into a concentration camp. Finally, it's the end of Rhine. There are multiple waves of emotional eruption, but to be fair, not all players will be affected by it.
What I think is more memorable than the story overall is the character depiction, or characterization. The best one has to be Pierson. Like the actor of the character, Josh Duhamel, said, "he's kind of a dick." When in front of others, he always shows his hard side. But that does not mean that he does not care about his men. He will still save Daniels whenever he can. It's just that he learnt that sometimes there are something you have to give up, from the Battle of Kasserine Pass. Thus, when retreating from Hill 493, Pierson followed Turner's order to let their people retreat while Turner's holding the ground, which caused Turner's death in that episode. But you can also clearly see that he has been changed a bit by Daniels' attitude at the end where he told Daniels that "We are gonna find him (Zussman) for sure, I'm just not sure if we can find him alive."

[Heavy Spoilers End Here]

Besides the story, there are multiple scripted events that happen in multiple missions. They look cool for sure, but clearly you can feel the fakeness of some of them. Take the train crash event in mission S.O.E. as an example. It is magnificent to observe the entire scripted sequence, but at the same time you need to realize that a heavy armored train just crashed right next to you and hit a watch tower nearby and after everything has been settled down you didn't get injured at all. At all. The game is still trying to remind you that it is only a visual feast rather than an accurate depiction of every aspect of the war.

And then it's the setting. I hate war but I love World War II being used as background of the story. However, with "WWII" in the title, it only covers European theater, and only covers European theater after Normandy. "WWII" seems a buzzword they use for such a tiny setting.

But overall, I really enjoyed the experience with the campaign. There were infuriating moments when I chased after several achievements (like One of the Lucky Few and Gasoline Cowboy) that are terribly designed, but I do like the Hollywood film style storytelling in the campaign and how each episode is designed and connected with others.




Final Verdict: 8/10

Multiplayer:

Single Player part of the game is important not only because it delivers an exciting experience to let players enjoy, but also because it's the fundation for multiplayer settings. So far I'm enjoying the multiplayer experience, but it can certainly be much better.

If we talk about the multiplayer aspect of this game, then there is no way we shouldn't talk about the launch issues. At launch night, lots of players, including me, cannot get into the game for quite a few hours. It seems that the server got overload because of how many people were trying to log into the server. They then switched Headquarter into a solo experience to reduce the server load. The game worked, but the Headquarter didn't.

One of the most attractive aspect of this game is the entire Headquarter system where up to 48 players can be in the same session and do lots of things together. They can open supply drops, try shooting range, play 1 vs. 1 pit, defend enemy attacks together. And this is one aspect that was supposed to be in the beta test but didn't make it. The truth is, that only after being online for roughly 2 days, it went offline for about 2 weeks. It then went back online for another 2-3 days before it went offline again. As of right now my Headquarter is still empty, making the leveling for social rank much more difficult since there is no one you could be social with. And as of right now there is no anti-air gun activity in Headquarter at all, which is supposed to happen every 30 minutes.

Maybe people don't care about Headquarter that much as the social rank will not affect items you get from supply drops. Let's talk more about gameplay related stuff. Weapon balance being one of the most important ones as weapons are what you are using in each match. If you have even played the multiplayer slightly, you know what I'm about to say. BAR. Everyone is using this weapon. Except me. Maybe I'm the only one who hasn't touched this weapon even a bit yet. They have nerfed it slightly when the game came out, but it was not enough. Sledgehammer has confirmed that they are going to nerf it again by giving it more recoil. However, this weapon doesn't excel at all in mid to long range engagements. What makes it crazy is that it kills faster than all SMGs in the game in close range (under 19 meters). An assault rifle can outperform all SMGs in close range. Increasing recoil will not change the situation significantly at all. To me, the best approach is to decrease its 3 shots to kill range or increase hipfire spread.

Moreover, shotguns are straight terrible right now. Combat Shotgun is okay. It's not great, but still usable. Same for Toggle Action because we certainly do not want another Brecci in a Call of Duty game. However, the other 2 double barrel shotguns are straight up terrible. As a double barrel shotgun you sometimes can't even kill people in 1 shot at point blank range. They are, however, going to buff shotguns so we will have to wait and see how that goes.

That brings up to the next point, which is Division balance. The three most used Divisions are Infantry, Airborne and Mountain. They are overused because they are excellent. I can see why people sometimes want to use Armored when they play objectives, but they are still not as good as the three above. And there is no reason to use Expeditionary as of right now given how terrible shotguns are. Hopefully the next weapon balance patch can make this more balanced as well.

That being said, most weapons in the game are still very usable. They just suit differnt styles. Thus, if you find yourself being terrible at one certain weapon, consider changing your play style to fit the weapon more.

Another glitch that I'm sure they are going to fix is the glitch spot on Pointe du Hoc. By entering this spot you will stay in a rock and you are able to see everyone on both sides of the spot and you will be able to kill them with no problem. They have no way to kill you unless they enter this glitch spot as well. This glitch makes this map almost unplayable so I'm more than happy to see it get fixed soon.

Everyone seems to hate Gustav Cannon right now. I do not have special feelings about it. I sure do not like that map a lot, but I don't hate it either. It's just a regular map that I can snipe on if I want.

I love the idea of having cosmetic only weapon variants. But there are still lots of minor bugs that they need to fix, like 4x optic with custom reticle on snipers causing black scope and extended mag on Devil's Piano I and II variants cauing the weapon to shake like crazy when firing.

Other than those, I'm pretty satisfied with the game. It's a nice transition from advanced movement to boots on the ground. Scorestreaks do feel underwhelming as they are weak. War mode can be boring if you only focus on the narration as they are totally fixed and there is no variation at all. I'm sure there are other little things they need to fix, but overall I enjoy the experience I have. That being said, I am a long time fan for this franchise, so take my words with a grain of salt if you are new to this series and any of the problem I have mentioned above truly annoys you. Like I said, it is great, but it can definitely be a lot better for sure.



Final Verdict: 7/10

Conclusion:

​If you are a long time Call of Duty fan, this is a game you are more than likely want to get. However, if you do not have special moments with this franchise, it probably won't attract you too much. In that case, I would suggest you to hold onto it for a bit. You can decide whether it's for you later when the game gets improved.


Final Verdict: 7.5/10

11/29/2017

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