Black Ops 2 Impressions: New Perks, Weapons, Score Streaks And ‘Pick 10′ Revealed
Black Ops 2 multiplayer has broken cover at Gamescom. Here’s what you need to know.
We’re not going to lie: when it was revealed that Black Ops II’s multiplayer would take place in the future our interest died faster than a noob player in Hardcore Headquarters. Mechs? Come on. That sort of nonsense should be left to ill-advised Battlefield spin-offs.
This year’s Gamescom however has changed our opinion. With Black Ops II media spilling out almost hourly we’ve had a chance to see it in action, and it’s still COD, for good and ill.
The mechs and future tech might have gotten most of the attention before Gamescom, but it’s the new create a class and scoring systems that are hogging all the attention. Killstreaks are out, replaced with Score Streaks. Like an amped up version of MW3′s Strike Packages (although here they reset upon death) now you’ll get points that bankroll rewards for far more activities. So if you’re a defensive player, or a support player, or someone who doesn’t possess the twitch-skill required to hit the high score chains, then you’ll still be rewarded. Here’s what’s up for grabs.
RC-XD – 325 Points
UAV – 375 Points
Hunter Killer – 400 Points
Care Package – 450 Points
Counter-UAV – 475 Points
Guardian (emits a suppressive sonic wave that shocks opponents. Getting caught in one of these seriously distorts your vision and using one is a great way to block off pathways). – 500 Points
Hellstorm Missile (can either be manually guided to a target for a sizeable impact or be detonated in the air to release a cluster of bombs. It’s a risk/reward scenario, but either way it proved quite deadly and stands as a rather early unlock). – 525 Points
Lightning Strike (enables players to choose three precise target areas to bombard with an aerial assault). – 550 Points
Death Machine – 600 Points
Sentry Gun – 650 Points
War Machine – 700 Points
Dragon Fire – 725 Points
A.G.R – 800 Points
Stealth Chopper – 850 Points
Orbital USAT – 900 Points
Escort Drone – 1000 Points
Warthog – 1025 Points
EMP Systems – 1050 Points
Lodestar – 1150 Points
UTOC Warship – 1200 Points
K9 Unit – 1275 Points
Swarm (sends out a devastating attack that destroys enemies and enemy equipment across the entire map). – 1400 Points
Create a class is also dramatically changed. Instead of allocating certain perks and gun attachments to your loadout, now you’ve got maximum flexibility in choice thanks to the new ‘Pick 10′ system. Now, you’ve got ten ‘points’ to spend on anything you like, from guns to attachments to perks to grenades. While you can’t have, say, 10 perks, you can use ‘Wildcards’ to double your perk-carrying capabilities, or triple your attachments. You’re essentially free from prescribed notions of what a Call Of Duty load-out should be: prefer two sidearms to a primary and a secondary? Do it. Not in the market for equipment? Get rid of it, spend the points elsewhere.
Before you start dreaming of creating an unstoppable killing machine however, it’s not possible to unlock all of these attributes on one playthrough of the 55 ranks. Going Prestige is the only way to get them all (there’s over a 100 different bits of content), and COD Points are also out: instead you gain one token unlock for each rank up. (Certain bits of content are also still locked of until you get to a certain rank.)
It’s a big change, and one that will no doubt irritate those that feel that Call Of Duty has already strayed too far away from its roots. From what we’ve seen though it could be a nice twist on one of the series core mechanics. Will it lead to different playstyles? Probably. Will there be problems with it? Absolutely. Does it have the potential to shake up a series that’s lost a step in the last iteration? Definitely.
Game modes too have been changed up. Now there’s a 18-player MP mode dubbed Multi Team that sees players fighting against up to 6 different factions, and Hard Point, which is a control and conquer objective game. (Old classics such as S&D and TDM still return of course). Even more substantially, there’s now there’s a big focus on e-sports, with livestreaming matches an aspect of the game that Activision is really shouting about.
Big, big changes then. But spend ten minutes watching footage of it and it’s obviously still Call Of Duty. We’re looking forward to seeing how the new systems work out, as well as the playing around with the new weapons, Score Streaks and attachments, which we’ve handily compiled below.
AN-94 – fully automatic, high capacity and mid-power assault rifle. It’s a decent all-rounder and a good starting point for newcomers.
SMR – semi-automatic rifle that packs a mean punch with high damage bursts. It’s also a little slow and cumbersome, so one for long-range pinpoint accuracy.
M8A1 – The main ally weapon previously known as the XM8. It’s a distant relative of the M4A1 with similar hip-fire accuracy and mid-range usefulness, but fires a 4 round bursts.
Type 25 – Another recognisable firearm under a new guise. This fully auto assault rifle is just like the Type 95 in Modern Warfare 3 (post-patch unfortunately). Its high rate of fire and low recoil still make it a valid option.
SA-58 – A new addition to the armoury, this assault rifles greatest strength is its light recoil and range. It takes some mastering but packing some decent damage and with a decent range it’s worth your consideration.
SLG 556 – One of the most powerful additions to Black Ops II’s weapon list, the SLG 556 fires powerful 3 round bursts that reward accuracy. No very newbie friendly but it will feel comfortable for veteran players.
SCAR-H – the SCAR range of assault rifles has become a firm favourite with fans. Once again it’s fully automatic and has great stats all round.
M1216 – Fully automatic with firing four quick shots for mid damage before switching chambers. It’s not too bad at mid-range either.
Saiga-12 – A semi-automatic shotgun with great short range damage. A fast and deadly option for runners.
R-870 MCS – A pump-action shotgun with crazy damage and a decent range and speed. One for pros.
Light Machine Guns
LSAT – A versatile fully automatic LMG with good stats all-round. It’s not particularly potent at long-range but absolutely tears through enemies up close.
QBB LSW – Another weapon with a familiar name, the QBB functions almost identically to the L86 LSW. It also has the highest rate of fire in its class.
MK 48 – The clear choice in the category, the fully-automatic MK 48 deals out decent damage at all ranges.
DSR 50 – Bolt-action that’s rather cumbersome but it will stop any enemy dead in their tracks with any well-aimed shot from the waist up.
SVU-AS – A good choice is you want to reduce your recoil. This semi-automatic sniper rifle is low on damage but high on fire rate.
Ballista – A bolt action sniper rifle with a deadly blast. It’s best feature is its fast handling speeds, which can get you out of a few sticky situations.
Assault Shield – the spruced-up Assault Shield still takes a few hits to kill an enemy, but it can now be deployed in the ground for instant cover.
Sub Machine Guns
MP7 – returning from Modern Warfare 3, the MP7 is once again a lightning-fast fully-automatic SMG. A versatile and strong choice for the discerning player.
Chicom CQB – A new addition to the weapons list. This SMG features a 3 round burst and a high cyclic fire rate.
PDW-57 – This is the beast of the category. Fully-automatic with a long range and the largest ammo capacity in its class.
Skorpion EVO III – this was a popular choice during our multiplayer bouts. Fully-automatic with the highest rate of fire in its class, it is absolutely devastating at close range and doesn’t fair too bad at mid-range either.
MSMC – Another new entry. This fully-automatic SMG is designed for long-range with a reduced recoil rate.
There’s plenty of exciting new equipment available in Black Ops II multiplayer, including the Millimetre Scanner – which sends a pulse wave to detect concealed static enemies – and the Target Finder – which identifies enemies within the scope. But easily the most exhilarating of the bunch is the new Shock Charges.
You can carry up to two at once, and they can either be deployed to instantly send an electric stun charge through an enemy, or be placed strategically for opponents to stumble over.
Here’s the rest of the list with secondary weapons, equipment, attachments, perks and the new Wildcards. Most should be self-explanatory but we’ve detailed major new additions and any significant changes.
FHJ-18 AA – vehicle lock-on only, two rockets
Select Fire Mode
Black Hat PDA – a nifty new device that enables the player to turn enemy equipment against its owners. Has a rather long hack time, though.
Perk 1 Greed – enables the player to pick a second perk from tier 1
Perk 2 Greed
Perk 3 Greed
Ghost – a slight change here as it only conceals you from UAVs while moving.