Call of Duty: Black Ops III – Review
Follow Genre: FPS
Developer: Treyarch
Publisher: Activision
Platform: PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC
Tested on: PS4

Call of Duty: Black Ops III – Review

Site Score
8.6
Good: Engaging story-line, more of the same old popular formula
Bad: No script for female character, she is referred to as male
User Score
7.5
(2 votes)
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Rating: 7.5/10 (2 votes cast)

Some things in gaming never change, and the release of a new Call of Duty at regular intervals is one of them. Call of Duty: Black Ops III is the first Black Ops game for current-gen consoles, and as one of the biggest names in the FPS world, this game had a lot to live up to. 

COD LOGO

Story

While many gamers purchase Call of Duty solely for its popular multiplayer, the game does also offer a single player experience. With a roughly 15 hour long campaign, Black Ops III is no different. Set in a dystopian world where technology has thoroughly changed the political landscape, players take on the role of a cybernetically enhanced black op soldier. One of the many cybernetic upgrades players will receive is DNI; a technological ability that lets those who have it wirelessly communicate with each other as well as with drones and computers. Those with the Direct Neural Interface upgrade become walking data drives, and as one of the game’s characters explains it “with DNI your mind becomes your greatest weapon”. That this upgrade does not come without dangers of its own, is something the player will soon experience.

COD BOIII Sound

The game’s storyline can be a bit all over the place, but does provide a powerful incentive to keep playing and is genuinely interesting as well as engaging. Black Ops III’s campaign also has fantastic pacing, every mission moves at just the right speed. The game gives the option to play as a male or female character (although the female character did get referred to as “him” plenty of times), and playing as a female black op soldier did give Black Ops III a bit of an edge that counteracted the usually overly masculine character of the Call of Duty series.

We must admit developer Treyarch did not reinvent the wheel with this one, but stories about cybernetic organisms and dystopian worlds do make for interesting games, and perhaps more importantly they also offer plenty of room for fun and diverse gameplay.

COD BOIII Gameplay

Graphics

Black Ops III has fantastic graphics. Cutscenes flow into gameplay sequences so smoothly that it’s sometimes hard to notice you’re not just watching a cutscene anymore and are meant to be controlling your character at the time. With a lot of attention for details, environments look realistic and characters look real. The quality of the game’s graphics truly emphasise how Black Ops III is a great example of a game that tries really hard to tick all boxes.

Sound

Most of the music accompanying Black Ops III’s gameplay blends into the background, as the graphics, story and gameplay take center stage. The soundtrack definitely does the job, but doesn’t have as much character as some other game soundtracks. While the game’s voice acting is generally good, only a couple of voice actors truly stand out. Especially Christopher Meloni shines in the role of John Taylor, but the voice actor for the female character is great as well. Other sounds in the game are of high quality, as is to be expected from such a big title.

 

COD BOIII Graphics

Gameplay

Seeing as Call of Duty is one of the most popular first person shooters around, Black Ops III had a lot to live up to. By introducing cybercore abilities such as hacking drones and moving at a much higher speed as well as wall-running, Black Ops III takes the futuristic FPS approach to a whole new level. Additionally, Black Ops III tries to offer a larger degree of freedom than your average shooter by allowing players to customise their loadout and cybercore set-up before deployment. The DNI system allows for a great tactical view, and allows for an interesting gameplay experience. There’s a lot of variety between missions, keeping things interesting. The various difficulty levels make sure that the game is accessible to anyone who can hold a controller, while also providing extreme challenges for the more experienced players (especially with the Nightmare difficulty setting which is unlocked after finishing the game).

Not everything works fantastically all the time. Wall-running is optional most of the time, making us wonder why the developer didn’t leave it out all together to avoid comparisons to FPS with parkour elements Titanfall. Cybercore abilities are fun, but the levelling system could have worked better. Overall though, Call of Duty: Black Ops III is a lot of fun to play, and the futuristic atmosphere works very well for this FPS.

COD BOIII Gameplay

While the multiplayer tries very hard to carry across the (relative) depth of the single player campaign with its specialists, this mode has a much harder time shaking the typical FPS atmosphere, but perhaps it doesn’t want to. Mainly good for providing more of the popular Call of Duty experience (now with a futuristic twist), the multiplayer is sure to give many Call of Duty fans what they want.

Conclusion

Black OPs III’s story is genuinely interesting, even if it can be a little all over the place sometimes. Graphics are fantastic, and even though you probably won’t remember any of the music, the game does have a decent soundtrack. Overall, Call of Duty: Black Ops III offers an engaging and enjoyable FPS experience.

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Rating: 7.5/10 (2 votes cast)
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Call of Duty: Black Ops III - Review, 7.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
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I'm a 24 year old gamer with a passion for RPG's, and the gaming community as a whole. When I'm not gaming, I can be found cooking, reading, or with my partner and pets. Currently on: PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, PC and 3DS.

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