Review: Call of Duty: Black Ops

Mr.logic

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Zainlong said:
Strangely enough I quite enjoyed the story.
Then again Im one of the odd people who likes piecing odd crap like that together.

It's definately not perfect, I'll agree with that.
I guess it's just my cup of tea.
I personally, for the love of GOD listen personally. I loved the game I'm not going to discuss the plot but I thought the game was exciting I found absolutely no problems with the voice acting. The story was great(even if confusing at first), and also I do not have xbox live. So my enjoyment isn't effected by the multiplayer.
I don't beileve a word Mr. Pitts said was accurate but thats just me, please no flame.
 

Casual Shinji

Should've gone before we left.
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Kalezian said:
I tried to play single player, but the game was so fucking boring I almost wanted to play Fable III......almost. When I play a FPS, I want to, you know, SHOOT things?
Holy God, you're comparing it negatively to Fable 3?

I wasn't going to buy it anyway, but Christ, that is bad!
 

Midnight Crossroads

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I enjoyed the story a lot more when I didn't take it seriously. It was interesting, but it was so over the top in some ways that it almost seemed like a parody. The one thing I loved most about the story though was the throwbacks to WaW. It was awesome to see Reznov and Petrenko again.

It was like Forest Gump got together with a Bond villain and some communists to make some plan. Seriously, what was the villain's motivation again? Did he want to destroy America or spread communism or make himself rich?

It's a pretty good game. It's not enough to make me want to play the campaign again, but the multiplayer is what I mostly play it for.
 

Dango

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Feb 11, 2010
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I kind of find it hard to take a review seriously when it quite literally ignores about half of the entire game (and I'm not talking about single player, he really just ignored about half of the single player levels).
 

Zepren

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Sep 2, 2009
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I think you've been pretty hard on it. It's not that bad. There is so much content in there it's unreal. It's nothing revolutionary but it's nothing terrible. It's a decent enough game.
 

Sterling|D-Reaver

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Here are my reasons why I don't like this review. The voice acting is very good. . . way above typical video game fare.
The single player is not the best, kind of hard to follow but with an imagination to help you fill in the gaps where the story just gives some hints.

Overall this review reads like it was written by one of those people who hates anything that gets popular. (which is actually more the way I normally lean, the masses are stupid)

Huge point against the review? obvious lack of time spent in game and turning a blind eye to the multiplayer. I can accept 2 stars for the single player but if your reviewing a game you'd better review the whole damn game.

I never got MW2 because I am a hardcore PC gamer and I love mods. . .
I know a lot of people don't like COD type MP but those people don't have to play the game.

Side note: Reviewers should enjoy the kind of games they are reviewing if they don't the can't write a fair review for many reasons.
 

magaruis

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Nov 18, 2009
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I have finished the single player in Black Ops and i have to agree.
I was halfway the game when someone interrupted me and asked me how i liked it. My only response i could give was that i was currently in dude-stan , killing some dudes, the same thing i was doing since the start, but i had no idea why i was killing said dudes. But this mission, i was killing world war one dudes instead of vietcong dudes.

I didn't really get the feeling with any of the characters involved and only by the end of the game was i able to tell the different characters apart.

I did however liked the boating section. It had a really good feel to it. The music was perfect at most of the points during the whole game. Correct pacing, stuff goes boom , music in the background , perfect.

The problem was that the game felt a bit too much scripted. I'm used to running infront of the NPC's in games and Black Ops seemed to hate me for it. A fine example of how this game is scripted a bit too much is the stealth level. After the chopper passes , you'll sneak past a cluster of guards and be faced with a single guard , standing in lights, with his back turned to you. So i jolly walk up to him and introduce him to ambassador Ice Axe. He promptly dies and then suddenly i get faced by a small army who have been alerted by ambassador Ice Axe's work. So i die , i restart the level and try again. Same outcome. This repeats a few times with me trying to find an alternative route. The solution ? Sit in a corner in the shadows and wait for my GM-npc to kill the baddie for me. Because the NPC obviously has special powers i didn't have.

The flikkering in between the different levels game a small headache. Its a nice touch to signal transition , but it was just painfull.

The plot twist (if you can call it a plot twist) was really obvious. Maybe i am spoiled in this , but they smeared it on a bit too much.

The escape scene from the gulag was nicely done. I actually liked that moment in the game and it did feel correctly paced and somewhat desperate.

A problem i had throughout the game was that alot of the scenes just reminded me of the other COD games. The mini RTS reminded me of the mission where you are given command of a gunship and cover the teams approach. The final scenes with the terrain shifts brought me back to the opening scenes of MW1. Shooting Castro (spoiler warning) reminded me of the end of MW. the many moments where you almost fall off something or get knocked off your feet were also done before.

All of these moments were new , innovating or important plot points in the other COD games. They were signaled with new and innovating game aspects. The first time you got the gunship command , you might have hated it , but it was something new.

in black ops on the other hand , they were just tossed in there, without really bothering to expand on it. The game really lacked "Oh My God" moments i'm used to the series. No matter how bad the previous few titles were , they dared to try new things or think big. I just didn't have that same feeling in this singleplayer.
This gives the whole singleplayer a very safe feeling. No thinking out the box , no playing a character dying form radiation poisoning , no shooting innocents in an airport, just very very safe shooting action against an really safe bad guy (a communist nazi-lover, if only he was a zombie , he would have been the safest bad guy out there.)
 

x434343

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Mar 22, 2008
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Um, wow. You missed the point. There is a definitive reason that there's a LOT of flashing lights in your face. Mason is mentally unwell. He developed Dissociative Identity Disorder (Or Schizophrenia, take your pick over whether you want realism or Hollywood) after Vorkuta. The flashing is probably a combination of his hallucinations and the fact that Hudson likes the electricity button on your chair. In "Revalations", the hallucinations become far worse. Mason does get 'better' by "Redemption" because he's been shown everything he knows is wrong and also, he doesn't have an electrical chair. Probably your biggest insult is the Pentagon scene. There's a reason it's there. I mean, for those who have been married, do you remember it because you were in the midst of action, or because of sheer excitement and honor felt in the presence of something greater? THAT'S why Mason remembers meeting JFK so vividly: It was exciting AND relavant to his life.

As for the jumps to Hudson missions, remember, HUDSON INTERROGATES YOU. There are no flashing lights of lighting flash in those segments. Hudson, while interrogating you, thinks about those times himself.

Actually, my biggest problem that they got a fucking Brit (no offense Brits) to voice act for the American PC, a voice you will hear so much. His accent slips out FAR too often.

All in all, it does NOT deserve a 2/5. 3/5 is far more acceptable, but you really should think less about "How is this Call of Duty" and more "How is this an interactive storyline?"
 

Susan Arendt

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Korten12 said:
Susan Arendt said:
Korten12 said:
It's sad, I love the escapist, but people take these reviews as if they're only right. I think their shouldn't be perfessonal reviews anymore for any game, only user reviews.

No offense, but seriously, people read this and then say "well this guy says it sucks, so it must suck." Without ever even trying it. People should try games for themselves, not just going off the opinion of others.

I am not saying this review is right or wrong, its someones opinion and I don't want to change that, I just hate when reviewer's opinions are taken above anyone elses.
And user reviews would be different...how, exactly? Assuming, of course, people paid any attention to them, which is all folks are doing here. They're reading the review, and deciding for themselves whether or not they still want to get the game. Paying attention to a professional reviewer and paying attention to an amateur one is no different.
maybe they woudn't be any better. It's hard to say, but Reviewers unlike User Reviewers are much more well known. So likely less to be heard, which obvious would then it would take in consideration whether or not their would be need for any reviews.

I just think that, people take review's and I myself am guilty of this sometimes, that I take a reviewers opinion for truth and that if they say a game sucks it must suck. I do this often with certain types of games. Though lately I have been trying to form my own opinions.

Now the main reason why I get angry at sometimes reviews, is not becuase of what their opinion is, if they hate a game or like it, thats their opinion (well duh. XD), but sometimes people don't form their own opinions. They look at these and agree with it just becuase they wish to agree with it instead of trying out it for them selves.

a review could say "well this game is really bad" but then the player decides to go out and try it for themselves and discoveres that they like it. I think more people should do that. I write my own reviews at times aswell, I plan to write one for Black Ops and possibly Arcania: Gothic 4. Though even reviewing these, I hope people learn more about the game and then try it for themselves.
And User Reviews would be no different than any of the issues you're laying out. You seem to be assuming that people would be less likely to take a User Review at face value, and would work harder to form their own opinion, simply because that person is an amateur. But that's not necessarily true. People tend to find reviewers that they trust - which is to say those who by and large hold the same opinions as them - and follow them. Doesn't matter if that reviewer is a professional or not. A User Review has as much potential to cause the sort of "blind faith" you take issue with as a professional review.

You're also overlooking the positive side of things - I've had many people tell me "I never would've played that game if it weren't for your review". (Usually referring to The Path or Persona 4.) Someone taking a reviewer at his word can be a good thing, too.

All of that aside, it's ultimately up to the player to decide what he or she likes and wants to try. Some folks are happy just listening to one trusted source, others want as much information as they can get. Both approaches are equally valid.

Anyway, I don't want to derail this thread any further, but I'm happy to carry on via PM, if you like.

Sterling|D-Reaver said:
Here are my reasons why I don't like this review. The voice acting is very good. . . way above typical video game fare.
The single player is not the best, kind of hard to follow but with an imagination to help you fill in the gaps where the story just gives some hints.

Overall this review reads like it was written by one of those people who hates anything that gets popular. (which is actually more the way I normally lean, the masses are stupid)

Huge point against the review? obvious lack of time spent in game and turning a blind eye to the multiplayer. I can accept 2 stars for the single player but if your reviewing a game you'd better review the whole damn game.
The review points out pretty clearly that it covers the single-player only, and that we'll be posting a separate review of the multiplayer.
 

Kuhly

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I guess Escapist didn't get the free trips to a resort for the big unveiling that Screwattack received, and surprise surprise they gave it glowing reviews. You just have to listen to Screwattacks last episode of Sidescrollers and watch there blanket coverage of black Ops and you get the feeling of what we call in Australia Cash for comments.
 

AlternatePFG

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Sterling|D-Reaver said:
Huge point against the review? obvious lack of time spent in game and turning a blind eye to the multiplayer. I can accept 2 stars for the single player but if your reviewing a game you'd better review the whole damn game.
The review of the multiplayer is coming out tomorrow.
 

ezeroast

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Jan 25, 2009
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The single player campaign story does make sense, its just that its retarded.
I don't understand the winging about the graphics, looks good to me. I mean its not crisis but then again crisis wasn't as good a shooter. Game play over graphics every time.

Some really bad lag for the first few days of multiplayer but it seems good today, not sure if there was a patch or I just got lucky.

As long as the lag issues get straightened out I'll most likely get another 30+ hours out of it and if I do, I call that money well spent.

Oh yea and the very end scene almost made me spew.
 

thethingthatlurks

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Feb 16, 2010
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Susan Arendt said:
Korten12 said:
It's sad, I love the escapist, but people take these reviews as if they're only right. I think their shouldn't be perfessonal reviews anymore for any game, only user reviews.

No offense, but seriously, people read this and then say "well this guy says it sucks, so it must suck." Without ever even trying it. People should try games for themselves, not just going off the opinion of others.

I am not saying this review is right or wrong, its someones opinion and I don't want to change that, I just hate when reviewer's opinions are taken above anyone elses.
And user reviews would be different...how, exactly? Assuming, of course, people paid any attention to them, which is all folks are doing here. They're reading the review, and deciding for themselves whether or not they still want to get the game. Paying attention to a professional reviewer and paying attention to an amateur one is no different.
Dunno, he may have a point. A user has a lot more time than you guys (presumably) have to write up a review. They may also be a lot more personally invested in a game, and their review may reflect that by being a metaphorical marriage proposal, or pure loathing. Furthermore, an amateur is less likely to be accused of having been bought off. Of course, you guys are more professional, you know what to look for, and you have honed your abilities over considerable periods of time. I wouldn't say amateur and professional reviews are equivalent, but different. That being said, the mere fact that you guys have access to an editor makes choose your reviews over an amateur's. I like being able to understand what I'm reading.../hypocrisy

Anyway, that review was harsh, but I suddenly have the overwhelming urge to high-five Mr. Pitts. Admittedly, I never had any plans as far as playing this thing goes, but I like seeing somebody point out that there is nothing original or even remotely excellent about this game.
 

Electrogecko

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Apr 15, 2010
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It seems like the campaign is relying on a lot of "cool" cinematic moments. Nobody is really going to be impressed by the game (unless they're incredibly shallow) because you see some guy stab another guy's hand to a desk or you get to converse with Kennedy or hide your recent victim's corpse in a bush etc. These are all detached experiences and don't make the game better.

I can't express enough how disappointed I am that this game is breaking records and scoring unanimously amazing reviews. Call me a hater, tell me I'm jumping on the bandwagon, say I'm being elitist- I don't give a shit. There are much much MUCH better games out there that most of the people online in Black Ops have never touched.
 

MysticnFm

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Jul 8, 2009
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I really didn't think the voice acting was that bad. Sam Worthington does a good job, besides the fact that he really can't pretend to be an American Soldier when he is speaking with a thick Australian accent every few minutes.

I agree that the way the campaign was presented was poor, the flashbacks and frequent cuts in the action annoyed the hell out of me. However the story itself was actually not bad for a FPS, and they at least ATTEMPTED a plot twist, even though you could see it coming a mile away. One thing I will say about the missions, is that sometimes the direction and objectives are really unclear. I must have spent about an hour on the Defend Khe San mission, before I figured out you are supposed to roll barrels of napalm down the hill.

Also, what version were you playing? I had the PS3 version, and the visuals looked fantastic to me. I never ran into an unfinished texture or graphical glitch. Perhaps my standards are lower in the graphics department though.

I suppose the experience differs for everyone.
 

hawkeye52

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Jul 17, 2009
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Sterling|D-Reaver said:
Huge point against the review? obvious lack of time spent in game and turning a blind eye to the multiplayer. I can accept 2 stars for the single player but if your reviewing a game you'd better review the whole damn game.
if someone hasnt already mention this to you i think this is meant to be the single player review only the multiplayer is coming up later

OT: it looks like i was right about this one as well sincei predictied that MW2 would be shit and so is this by the looks of it
 

GuideBot

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Feb 25, 2010
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Oh thank god for The Escapist. Spot on review, from my experience. If this gets GOTY I'm quitting videogames.

Makes me mad how bad this game is. Can't wait for the multiplayer review.
 

Deofuta

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Nov 10, 2009
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Odd, I thought BO's storyline was much better than MW2. But it just goes to show that opinions differ, and some enjoy different games more than others. Some people should probably realize this, and think that because they did not enjoy the game, that their opinion is somehow better than those who did, and that those who liked the game are idiots.
 

Freemon

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Nov 18, 2009
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OK, apparently there's people out there playing a different Black Ops.

-I thought the story was great, much better than any of the previous CoDs.
-The characters were interesting, they had a nice depth.
-The levels were well designed and the gameplay was fun and varied.
-The story was long enough to give me at least 8 hours of good fun which I'm replaying again to check out the corners I've missed on the first run and try different approaches to the levels.

The only downside is the somewhat buggy release which is being fixed right now.

This is my opinion, I bought the game based on it and I don't regret it. For me Black Ops is an above average shooter.

4 Stars. (not 5 because they screwed up the release with some really crappy bugs.)

Thank you, have a nice day.