Call Of Duty: Ghosts Hands-on
Blink and you'll miss it. Seriously, Call Of Duty: Ghosts' multiplayer is ridiculously fast.
I sat down at the Call Of Duty: Ghosts booth Xbox One controller in hand and prayed for a nice long multiplayer mode to cycle up but no answer came. Instead I wa treated to a lighning fast taste of the new Blitz game mode.
Blitz is played over two rounds, each with a score limit of eight. The objective, aside from shooting any of the enemy team that is stupid enough to wander into your crosshairs, is to enter the other team's goal area as many times as possible in 10 minutes or until one team scores eight times.
The scorer is instantly teleported to another point on the map making it more challenging than just bolting to the enemy's goal zone and passing over the marker as may times as possible until taking a bullet to the back of the head.
My team in this demo did not seem to grasp this however and just ran about shooting folk as if they were playing team deathmatch until the other team racked up and insanely quick eight points.
The second round lasted a bit longer with a bit more of a decent balance to it however it ended with me being the only person to score a point towards winning the round.
Blitz mode is a nice idea; as long as players have grasp of the mode's rules that is. It's an enjoyable alternative to the well-worn capture-the-flag modes and it doesn't punish players too heavily for being bad shots unless they're playing against hardcore COD players.
Of course there is no sense of how the matchmaking will work in the finished game because everyone is being herded through at a very fast rate of knots but Infinity Ward have been at this a long time and with the right balance Blitz mode could prove to be very entertaining indeed.
It must be noted that I am truly awful at Call Of Duty. As a result I remain a fairly casual player with a kill/death ratio that is weighted fairly heavily to the death column.
Still I found this infuriatingly fast.To be fair Call Of Duty has always been fairly fast-paced and Black Ops II is probably the most fun I've had playing the series online in a long time. However fast previous games in the series have been Ghosts seems to be hopped up on amphetamines in comparison.
Visually it's sharp, clear and crisp and exactly how you'd imagine Black Ops II to look if it ran at 60fps at 1080p. It's not going to win awards for its visuals on next-gen hardware but it's not particularly ugly either.
Right now, this demo build actually looks a bit sharper than Battlefield 4 by virtue of it being a rather polished demo build rather than the rushed new map that EA are showing off up the stairs from the COD booth at the Eurogamer Expo. As a result it feels closer to the finished product that will grace the Xbox One at launch. I'm not sure whether that will be a good thing or a bad thing though.
One thing I can say for sure about Call Of Duty: Ghosts is that it follows very strongly in the footsteps of its predecessors providing a fast and accessible multiplayer for folk that like to shoot other folks, over and over again in the face. It's probably the fastest online multiplayer mode I've played in a long time and it is sure to challenge even the hardest COD nuts when it arrives in November.
It feels really solid on the Xbox One and there is a noticable improvement in the sharpness of the visuals over Black Ops II. Some may find it a bit visually disappointing but at this stage the game still isn't finished and there will be a fair bit of balancing left to do before November comes around.
Call Of Duty: Ghosts is due for release on Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U and PC on November the 5th with the PS4 and Xbox One versions to follow at their respective console launches later on in November.