Today I bring to you something I stumbled across during my usual adventures on Xbox Live. Something so awesome that at first, I didn’t realise what it was until it had happened a few times, and what’s more, I found it in a game I normally try my absolute best to avoid; Call of Duty Black Ops 2.
Now let’s set the record straight, I’m a big Battlefield fan and prefer it over Call of Duty for the overall quality of gameplay and the experience it provides. To me, CoD is a “good” game, but that’s all it is, a clever developer that took advantage of the market at a time where there wasn’t a widely popular console game that catered to gun fans whilst providing quick and simple shooty fun times that you can pick up and play without a second thought. Since CoD’s birth we have seen what can only be described as it shedding its skin every 8-12 months, scraping off the boring and non-profitable bits and making other bits a bit shinier, nothing ground breaking but it caters to the majority and that’s why it’s so damn successful. It literally prints money for anyone who gets their hands on it.
Having said that, I’m not here to slate CoD as it is, at its core a ‘good’ game and I do play it for the reason mentioned above, I can just jump in a game, let the crap hit the fan and then just bounce around from lobby to lobby sampling the different game modes Blops 2 has on offer. That’s when, early evening last night I found myself playing Search & Destroy. Now for those of you who haven’t sampled this delight let me bring you up to speed:
-1 life per player, no respawn
-1 team attacks, attempting to arm a bomb
-other team must defend from attackers
-round is won when either team is wiped out or the bomb goes boom
-Tension is high, every kill and death counts, teamwork is a must – rage potential is damn high.
Seems simple enough right? BUT, if you’re in party chat the game drags you from your safe haven of chums and chumettes into a public lobby. Yes, you will get to meet Call of Duty’s finest here. 9 times out of 10 your sexuality, accent and location of your mother will be challenged by some right individuals as high levels of nerd rage and general twatishness reaches critical levels. Having said that, sometimes you will be lucky and get into a friendly lobby, but let’s be honest, you probably won’t, you will end up with a lobby filled with 12 year olds who cuss like drunken sailors.
Yes, you can mute these people but that isn’t why you play multiplayer now is it? What is a victory if you cannot reap its spoils by wallowing in your opponents anguish….or in some cases kudos at your gaming abilities? Call of Duty started to satisfy this carnal hunger through game winning/round winning kill cams. But now, oh man they’ve hit the sweet spot! In Search and Destroy, upon killing an opponent you can hear their mic for the next 3-5 seconds. You hear the yelp, the scream, the most tasty nerd rage in its purest form, something no other game on Xbox Live has been able to provide. I cannot begin the explain the satisfaction and smug ass feeling you will get from the knee jerk reactions of your victims – so go do it!
Alas, Call of Duty has caught me off guard and in the process highlighted this little hidden gem they have given us. A very raw connection with our opponents that, at the sweetest moment in gaming, allows us to sample the effects our victory had over them.
Could this hail a new start in multiplayer gaming where direct communication with opponents on the battlefield takes our participation as a gamer to deeper, more personal levels? Halo 3 started this trend on the 360 with the ability to talk to the opposing team at close range but sadly, the advent of party chat killed this off…is CoD bringing it back, have you seen this in other Xbox games?
Now go forth, brave the Search & Destroy lobbies and reap the rewards of your opponents parting squeal. Just remember though, fail to bring the A-Game and that little voice in the headset could well end up being you! Although if you’re actually still playing Call of Duty, chances are your better than me.