Call of Duty: WW2 Hands-On

Call of Duty: WW2 Hands-On
 
 

Each time Activision describes their latest Call of Duty as “boots on the ground” I curl up inside. They’ve used that phrase so often, that when developer Sledgehammer decided to return to an actual era of warfare which featured said boots on said ground, it lost all meaning.

But Call of Duty: WW2 is exactly what it says on the tin – a game set in a much older theatre of war. That historic choice trickles down to the moment-to-moment action, creating a Call of Duty that is slower and more deliberate. But compared to the hyper-kinetic, squirty jumps of recent games, it’s a refreshing change of pace.

 
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I managed to get my hands on three different multiplayer scenarios; The first two were the familiar Team Deathmatch, and Domination. The third was a new mode called War. More on that one later.

If you’ve played any Call of Duty, then the beats are the same. You’ll fight on tight battlefields, aiming down sights and taking down enemies. Getting kills, assists, or objectives gives you points, which lets you activate Score Streaks – special, one-use abilities. Scout planes will periodically show enemy locations on the map, while more lethal options include mortars and strafing runs.

But the core framework tying the customisation options together have seen a shift. Players will now be able to select Divisions, which give you access to special skills, and the type of weapon you use. The Infantry division for example lets you bayonet charge, locking into insta-kill melee strikes from farther away. Another division – focused on shotguns – lets you load your gun with incendiary rounds, transforming already lethal blasts into something more devastating.

As far as I can tell, it also looks like this system has replaced Perks in their entirety. Now a division’s passive ability fills that role; like allowing extra weapon attachments, and other benefits.

War is a competitive mode, which sees one team defending against another. The attacking team has a series of objectives they must fulfil. My session had us assaulting a manor, then moving on to build a bridge, and finally destroying a munitions box. If you’re on the defence side, you can build fortifications to help funnel enemies down certain areas.

I was initially lukewarm on the mode, but the more invested I became in it, the more fun I had. The push-and-pull nature fostered the right amount of tension, and at no point did one team feel completely outmatched for the other.

In War mode you also die a lot. Maybe this is meant to be a metaphor for the way armies treat soldiers as disposable cattle sent to the slaughter, but it’s probably just the LA heat and dehydration getting to me. Anyway, high body-count.

Sledgehammer have also replaced the Last Kill system, which previously showed who got the winning kill of a round. Instead they’ve opted for a Play of the Game approach, like that seen in Overwatch. I have some reservations about how cool this will be though, because unlike Blizzard’s colourful team-based shooter – where you can play as a range of characters with different abilities – the only thing you can do in Call of Duty is shoot dudes.

Also, there’s a gross amount of dismemberment in this year’s game. I know World War II was a terrible conflict, but on more than one occasion I found myself wincing away from the screen. I’m not entirely sure it’s effective, as much as it is nasty.

Call of Duty: WW2 doesn’t re-invent the wheel – no Call of Duty ever really has. But Sledgehammer are putting their own spin on a period of history which had previously been done to death in gaming. War could also prove to be my mode of choice, if the quality of maps and variance in objectives proves broad enough.


Call of Duty: WW2
+ A slower, more deliberate pace.
- It’s more Call of Duty.
"War is a refreshing game mode."
- Call of Duty: WW2
Follow Own it?

 

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Comments Comments (12)

 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Friday 16 Jun 2017 6:46 PM
4
Now with Black Women in German uniforms.

lol the negative of it's more COD, i respect that.
 
 
 
Posted by ChieftaiNZ
On Friday 16 Jun 2017 7:56 PM
3
16 June 2017, 06:46 PM Reply to ThatUndeadLegacy
Now with Black Women in German uniforms.

lol the negative of it's more COD, i respect that.
We will use CoD WWII to create an authentic WWII experience.
But we will throw any sense of authenticity that we could've possible had in our MP by allowing people to play as Female US/German soldiers, or even as a black German soldier because the Nazi's were super forward thinking and super inclusive of all races.
My favourite response to these choices is simple.

Call of Duty SJWWII
 
 
 
Posted by Ron
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 2:48 PM
2
A bit of a shame as I don't think dice will tackle a bf2 ww2 game after this. Activision need a bit of innovation with vehicle combat that's not on rails. Outside of nazi logo stuff which I believe is an international treaty thing where it's legal to promote the Nazis. I think?
 
 
 
Posted by ChieftaiNZ
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 5:09 PM
-
17 June 2017, 02:48 PM Reply to Ron
A bit of a shame as I don't think dice will tackle a bf2 ww2 game after this. Activision need a bit of innovation with vehicle combat that's not on rails. Outside of nazi logo stuff which I believe is an international treaty thing where it's legal to promote the Nazis. I think?
No, Swastikas aren't illegal anywhere, except for a few countries such as Austria/Germany/France. Austria bans it from being displayed publicly, but is allowed to be used for artistic purposes (Such as paintings, movies, games etc) as long as it doesn't promote National Socialism. In Germany they are illegal outside of historical use (Re-enactments, Doc*mentaries etc). France is similar. Everywhere else they are legal, but frowned upon, with the display of them protected by the 1st Amendment in America under freedom of speech. Most countries only act legally on them if they are used to incite hatred (Canada, Cyprus Czech Republic etc.)

In the past video games, including CoD, have had swastikas in the game, but slightly different versions of the game have been sold in Germany where the swastika is replaced by an Iron Cross etc to get around the laws so the game can be sold.
 
 
 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 6:28 PM
1
17 June 2017, 02:48 PM Reply to Ron
A bit of a shame as I don't think dice will tackle a bf2 ww2 game after this. Activision need a bit of innovation with vehicle combat that's not on rails. Outside of nazi logo stuff which I believe is an international treaty thing where it's legal to promote the Nazis. I think?
It's not promoting, and it was something else before it was a Nazi symbol,

"The swastika (as a character 卐 or 卍) is an ancient religious symbol used in the Indian subcontinent, East Asia and Southeast Asia. It is also a historic symbol found in almost every culture with different significance.[2][3] It is known outside Asia as the Hakenkreuz, gammadion cross, cross cramponnée, croix gammée, fylfot, or tetraskelion."

it's a pretty basic symbol which the nazi's just to used.
 
 
 
Posted by Ron
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 7:49 PM
-
But outside of those countries weren't the devs in a jam? I mean keep the sign in there and anger lots of ppl? I just don't know if including the Nazis in there was the way to go in this PC/social media world we live in. It's a complicated issue.
 
 
 
Posted by ChieftaiNZ
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 8:17 PM
1
17 June 2017, 07:49 PM Reply to Ron
But outside of those countries weren't the devs in a jam? I mean keep the sign in there and anger lots of ppl? I just don't know if including the Nazis in there was the way to go in this PC/social media world we live in. It's a complicated issue.
Which is what annoys me. Its because of the bullsh*t SJW/PC nonsense society obsesses over. 10 Years ago, video games could have swastikas and didn't have to include female soldiers in a WWII game, or black soldiers in the german army, because that was how it was. None of this "everyone is a special little snowflake" crap where everyone has to be represented otherwise its racist or sexist, and you are the worst person to exist since Hitler.
 
 
 
Posted by ChieftaiNZ
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 8:22 PM
1
Too add to my comment, there are clearly issues with discrimination against Gender/race in the real world, but a videogame set during WWII is a f**king awful choice to start trying and push that. Creating gender and race diversity in an army that was fighting to create a mother f**king new world order and establish a master race, is stupid.
 
 
 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Saturday 17 Jun 2017 8:36 PM
-
17 June 2017, 08:22 PM Reply to ChieftaiNZ
Too add to my comment, there are clearly issues with discrimination against Gender/race in the real world, but a videogame set during WWII is a f**king awful choice to start trying and push that. Creating gender and race diversity in an army that was fighting to create a mother f**king new world order and establish a master race, is stupid.
Frankly it's disgusting that people try changing history, (even knowing some of that history was fabricated/and or lies)
 
 
 
Posted by Mockstar
On Tuesday 20 Jun 2017 1:10 PM
1
Is race and gender really that big of a deal?
 
 
 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Tuesday 20 Jun 2017 3:56 PM
-
20 June 2017, 01:10 PM Reply to Mockstar
Is race and gender really that big of a deal?
No, but changing history in a "historically based game" is beyond the suspension of belief for a lot of people, a.k.a immersion breaking (if call of duty can be called immersive?).
 
 
 
Posted by birdman
On Tuesday 20 Jun 2017 4:06 PM
1
20 June 2017, 01:10 PM Reply to Mockstar
Is race and gender really that big of a deal?
You wouldn't have thought so right (same goes for female soldiers in BF1). Issues like this seem to bring out all the racist, redneck fan boys screaming for "authenticity and realism" in a game mainly played by 12 year olds who manage to somehow f**k everyone's Mums in between matches and pull off sweet "360 Noscopez" these days...