Well, almost twenty-four hours have passed since Microsoft’s massive multiplayer reveal for Call of Duty: Ghosts and now that the adrenaline has worn off, it’s time to take a look at what Ghosts really has to offer.
There is no denying the gigantic influence that the Call of Duty franchise has – with over 100 million players across the globe and a fanbase that often borders on the fanatical side, the COD moniker carries more weight than just about other name in the gaming industry. However, for as massive as the Call of Duty titles are, the franchise also maintains the reputation of being the most repetitious franchise this side of Dynasty Warriors.
To many, this is one of the biggest draws of Call of Duty – knowing that each year the newest COD entry will maintain the status quo with a few minor tweaks – is a serious plus. The potential for isolating other gamers who don’t want to shell out sixty dollars a year for a game that in many ways feels like a rehash of its predecessors never seems to be a concern to Call of Duty developers. With such a large fanbase to begin with, the money flows regardless.
Ghosts, however, seems to make strides in pushing the well-worn Call of Duty franchise in a new – albeit familiar – direction. Are these changes and additions too little too late? Will adding extra elements to Ghosts attract those who have shied away from previous entries? The answers to these questions might not be discernible now – but at least we can take a stab based off of what we have learned yesterday.
First and foremost, it seems that Ghosts is putting a large focus on character customization. With over 20,000 possible character options, it is abundantly clear that Infinity Ward is making a big push towards tailoring the Call of Duty experience to become more personal than ever. In previous entires, players were treated to various camos and facepaints – but the promised level of customization is unparralled to virtually any other shooter on the market. Smart move, Infinity Ward, who doesn’t love making a character truly their own?
Staggering numbers aside, while there are plenty of customization options to be found in Ghosts, adding new cosmetic options does little to change the formulation approach that Call of Duty has stuck to during their decade of dominance.
Infinity Ward, it seems, has realized this and added other features to increase the draw of Ghosts. The dynamic structure of Ghosts’ maps is perhaps the biggest draw of the game for those who are not already part of the ‘Call of Duty Nation’. With maps that change in real time – the decidedly similar flow of each and every battle in Call of Duty seems to be a way of the past. Thanks to this, those who may have shirked the franchise in the past might just consider returning – customization and dynamic events go a long way in making a case for an ever-evolving video game experience, and when coupled with the massive player base even the most staunch detractors of the Call of Duty titles may find themselves in awe.
Customization is king not only in regards to the players, but also in the selection of killstreaks, loadouts and perks. One of the most important features mentioned in yesterday’s reveal was the sheer selection players will be presented with. Featuring a new system where perks are assigned a point value (1-8) and players are given a set number of points (8) to pick and choose perks, the potential for truly different characters seems possible for the first time ever in a Call of Duty title.
Killstreaks, and their overhaul, are another fascinating change that players will encounter in Ghosts. Killstreaks are no longer air-based, and focused more on ground placement – in hopes that this will create a more visceral combat experience. As visceral as this may make things, adding twenty new killstreaks begs the question of overkill. Is this too much for players to handle?
Overkill is a Call of Duty: Ghosts signature is seems. Killstreaks aside, Infinity Ward has promised thirty new guns and seven new game modes. Ghosts, it seems, is making efforts to cater to everyone.
All in all, Call of Duty: Ghosts is shaping up to be the next genre-defining shooter experience. The promised level of customization and diversity is a step in the right direction. While no one can accurately predict just how these changes and additions will do in regards to generating new users, it is safe to say that even now, COD will remain king.
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