15 January 2009

Thoughts On: Call Of Duty, World At War

I made it through Call Of Duty: World At War three days after receiving it as a Christmas present. It's not a particularly short single player game, but, see, I'm a big fan of the Call Of Duty series. I can go gangbusters at it.

It is one of the few game series I consider to have any longevity whatsoever, along with the Star Wars: Battlefront games and Burnout Revenge, which have all deserved repeated visits. After you've played four COD's, you pretty much know instinctively when a chunk of the German line looks suspiciously like an ambush point, or when it's wise to just forget about dragging the sniper rifle everywhere and opt for a "room-clearer" weapon instead.

One of my complaints with this latest COD game is Keifer Sutherland. He's a voice actor in this and he's all over the mother. Frankly, I got tired of his Mr. Butch telling me where to go during the Marine missions in the South Pacific. I much prefer non-name voices.

This COD has only two basic storylines: Americans in the Pacific, Russians on the road to Berlin.

The Brits, until now a staple of series, get hosed this time out.

Rather another nationality--or is it ethnicity?-- is represented after completion of the single player campaign. Completion of the game unlocks a mission known as "Nazi Zombies". It's a locked room, run-out-the-clock scenario with increasingly difficult waves of moaning zombies to deal with. It's very cool and very fun, but it does mix two things that can haunt a person when you lay your head down on your pillow: the horror of being surrounded by zombies, and the relentless and repetitive "mind's eye game play" of a Tetris-like phenomenon. In tandem, not good.

Other points of interest: Handling a flamethrower was cool, even if I suspect the real thing was a lot less versatile, or well stocked, and a lot more horrifying. I also doubt even the gruntiest grunt ever could hump it at the same time as a BAR, a feat that was pure pie to my digital avatar. The combination of excellent enemy AI. and plentiful grenades in this one made some parts of it very troublesome and lethal.