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The Forgotten Narrative Innovation of Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

Black Ops 2 did a rather strange thing with its campaign that no other Call of Duty has, and it’s a twist that made it one of my favorite games from the last generation just for the story (that Treyarch multiplayer isn’t the only reason I have affection for Blops). Black Ops 2 has a branching plot but not in the… » 8/23/15 2:30pm Sunday 2:30pm

The Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 Beta Is Good--Mostly

As I noted this morning, Call of Duty is one of those rare things I like. I like the campaigns because the stories are usually decently told and efficiently delivered—I can play through each new one in a couple sessions, and playing them again never feels like a daunting proposition. And I like the multiplayer because… » 8/22/15 4:30pm Saturday 4:30pm

Forget the Haters, Japan *Hearts* Call of Duty

The conventional wisdom has always been Japan loves role-playing games and dislikes first-person shooters. First-person shooters, pundits said, were popular only with Western gamers. The pundits and conventional wisdom, it seems, are wrong.


In its debut week, Call of Duty: Black Ops II on the PS3 is the second best… » 11/30/12 4:00am 11/30/12 4:00am

How Square Enix Screwed Up Black Ops II for Japan

For years now, Square Enix has published the Call of Duty games in Japan. Square Enix honcho Yoichi Wada is apparently a big fan of the series—and Western games. His goal is apparently to make Japanese gamers more open to playing foreign titles. That's admirable. It would be more admirable if the company didn't keep… » 11/22/12 6:30am 11/22/12 6:30am

Call of Duty: Black Ops II GPU & CPU Performance

For Call of Duty fans, developer Treyarch just delivered an early Christmas present when they released Black Ops II. As the ninth game in the Call of Duty franchise and the sequel to the 2010 game Black Ops, we are hoping to see something meaningfully new from Black Ops II. We say this because last year's release ( » 11/21/12 3:00pm 11/21/12 3:00pm

Fan Outrage Brings the Nuketown 2025 Map Back to Call of Duty: Black Ops II Multiplayer

After suddenly pulling a popular pre-order multiplayer map from Black Ops II online play yesterday, Activision added it back to a new playlist called Chaos Moshpit. Game design director David Vonderhaar from dev studio Treyarch—who delivered the bad news—made it seem possible that the map could come back in a tweet… » 11/20/12 8:45am 11/20/12 8:45am

Activision Suddenly Pulls Nuketown 2025 Map from Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 Multiplayer

Earlier this month, Activision announced that it would let people who pre-ordered the publisher's latest FPS mega-hit play on a re-imagined version of the popular Nuketown multiplayer map. That part of the promotion turned out to be true. But that access to the special battleground appears to have been suddenly… » 11/19/12 4:29pm 11/19/12 4:29pm

Black Ops 2 Multiplayer Is Still The Call of Duty You Love…Or Hate

I've spent the last week playing Call of Duty: Black Ops II's multiplayer; arguably the real reason many will purchase the game. While I still have a lot to experience—the number of unlocks is ridiculous, and the competitive metagame is difficult to discern this early—I still think I've got a reasonable feel for it… » 11/16/12 2:00pm 11/16/12 2:00pm