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COD: Black Ops – here’s another opinion for you

I finished the single-player campaign on Call Of Duty: Black Ops last night. I am not going to dip into the multiplayer, as I have no real interest in it, so my opinion here in no way affects our final review – just so we’re clear on that. And anyway, reviewing a COD game based on single-player alone is like reviewing porn solely based on the acting: pointless, but a bit sexy.

Where was I? Ah yes, CODBLOPS. So what we have presented to us here is a thoroughly forgettable experience. At no point throughout the seven or eight hours I was playing the game did I feel truly involved or like I was accomplishing anything. But read that sentence again and you’ll see a shocking discovery: I played the game for seven or eight hours.

Surely if it was bad, I wouldn’t have played it for that long? Well, that’s true. Here’s the dirty secret: I enjoyed it. I won’t ever go back to play it again and I’m glad that I – in my privileged position – didn’t have to pay for my copy. But what I experienced, I enjoyed. Black Ops is a knuckle head; moronic to a level it’s hard to comprehend. In fact, it’s almost so stupid I find it hard to believe it’s not actually genius in disguise.

But that’s something we need every now and then. Holding Black Ops up as the paragon of all that is good and right in gaming is the work of a short-sighted moron. Accepting it as a few hours of your life thrown away, blowing shit up, living out your Arnie fantasies is the right way to go about things. And fortunately, it’s how most people seem to take the game – apart from those looking in at gaming from the outside, who seem to think we all take Call Of Duty super-seriously.

Still, like I said, I’m not going back to it any time soon. I’m hugely put off by the online community – to the point I simply won’t play – and the single-player doesn’t have any real depth, or anything that would force me to come back to it. But you know what? Sometimes that’s exactly what I want in a game. Well done, Treyarch.

The story is pretty much massive baws, though.




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  • RBL

    wow so i’m not missing out on anything like i thought, which is why i might rent it, just to see what the fuss really is. but i prefer the BC2 story and MP.
    though a couple of people i know say good things about the story which i just want to try, they stat it’s better than MW2 (the only game that i rented and sent back early). the fact it took you 7/8 hours gives me hope that things might just be turning round for storylines in FPS games

  • Ian Dransfield

    Or it says I might not be very good at the game, unfortunately.

  • joogal

    i do play online but could not agree more. Onlne is spoiled by the wholesale cheating (dont give me a few bad apples crap, its rife) Moronic tubes slavering unfunny garbage they think is hysterical. Poor losers and poor winners alike, infest the levels like pubic lice. In saying that i still play but hope they are making some real efforts to stamp out cheating on black ops because its out of control on MW2.

  • GAPP2008

    Black ops story , hmmm same as the comments above really enjoyable if forgettable , better than MW2 (both of them) though.
    MW2 online was runied by cheaters and boosters etc a long time ago so I traded it in as the online side became so incredibly frustrating I broke my buttons on the floor (£39.99 gone).
    Black ops is in no way different to MW2 game play wise at all , they ‘prettied and tarted’ things up and put some toys in but you cannot take away the way it plays and sorry Treyarch it’s the same game as MW2 just re-mixed.
    BFBC2 online is just so much better , a much more level playing field for everyone and the top level players don’t get it all their own way either – (capped at lvl 50) which is a shame as there is no prestige mode but I’m hoping they will sort that out as there is nothing left to aim for except going up the overall leaderboard.
    Overall a £40.00 game that isn’t a great deal different to what I was playing 18 months ago, bad bad Treyarch.

  • Emma Fowler

    I’m in a similar position. I hate the multiplayer, and find it too intimidating. But the single player is well, fun. The motorbike shooting and hiding behind a coal truck are elements that make this more interesting than MW2 by far in single player. Treyach also seem to be much better at setting difficulty level, as this isn’t as painfully easy either. If my husband didn’t have the game, I wouldn’t buy it for myself, simply plenty of other things I’d get more hours out of. Yet I’m glad I’m getting to enjoy this, if only for a little while.

  • I have to disagree with this one. I actually found the storyline to be really original and quite engaging for a FPS game. The plot twists and ‘fight club’ type ending (sorry for spoiling it for anyone who hasn’t got there yet 😉 was great.

    It’s nice to see a game like this try a new spin on the usual ‘you’re at war go do an objective’ ‘story’.

    It did have some infuriating bits where you just didn’t know quite where you were supposed to be going, but overall I thought it was fantastic.

    The multiplayer though was terrible. The levels have no flow and seem pretty lifeless, plus on the 360 version the textures look like something out of a bad ps2 game, they’re shockingly low res, pixelated and extremely dull. Seeing as the single player graphics were so good this was quite a surprise. I do agree it gets VERY frustrating though, same as modern warfare 2, but I much preferred that as at least it looked sexy!

    MOH multiplayer is one of the best fps multiplayers I’ve played, amazing graphics, great control system and you don’t get annoying singing kids running round stabbing everyone all the time. Much more realistic and engaging. Shame the single player lasts about 2 evenings of play though.

    I’m trading in for Assassins creed tomorrow 😉

  • Jack

    You think I should rent it? I’m leaning towards that option right now.

  • Ian Dransfield

    I’d say it’s a rental – see if you like it enough online to actually buy.