Call Of Duty: Infinite Warfare Review

Just like the planets rotating around the sun, every year, you can count on Call of Duty to come back with new missions. Since 2007 the franchise has been fast-forwarding us to the future, and now we’re leaving the Earth entirely, fighting for dominion among the stars. We’ve shot lasers and floated in space in Call of Duty games before, so how can Infinite Warfare shake up a conflict we’ve been living for so long?

In-Game Features

Infinite Warfare is served four ways: campaign, multiplayer, zombies, and a remastered Modern Warfare. The nine-year-old game has never looked better and, even though it’s frustrating that it’s being held hostage, it adds considerable value to Infinite Warfare. Out of the three modes in the game, the campaign is the weakest, despite going places no Call of Duty campaign has gone before.

Role Of Reyes

After a quick prologue you assume the role of Nick Reyes, a level-headed soldier suddenly given command of a massive ship and its crew. Determined to stay in the cockpit and keep his boots on the ground, he frequently leaves his Captain duties on the bridge behind to fight the Settlement Defense Front and its ruthless leader Salen Kotch, head-on. Despite their commitment to their roles, Kit Harrington and Brian Bloom play two of the blandest soldiers we’ve seen in the series.

Reyes doesn’t reveal much about himself, and Kotch spends the whole game preaching his Klingon-Esque philosophies of war to an army we never see him the address. There’s lots of drama but little depth. One of the most fascinating crew members is a robot named Ethan that likes to make practical jokes and throw itself in harm’s way, but these antics aren’t enough to breathe life into the story. The campaign has its weak points, but it’s worth it to fly a Jackal.

Skills That Returned In Warfare

Many ordinary skills return in Infinite Warfare: wall-running, boosted jumps, grenades that track enemies down, but this kind of space dogfighting is new to Call of Duty, and it makes up about half of the campaign. The sequences build upon jet fights that the series has been testing for the past few iterations. These interstellar battlefields' scale is effectively demonstrated when you seamlessly board and escape enemy ships or sneak your way through an asteroid field in just your spacesuit. It’s nowhere near as deep as a flight sim, but the Jackal outings get intense, and the setups can be creative.

In Captains Quarters

There’s a wanted board displaying rows of targets in the S.D.F.for Reyes to hunt down in the captain's quarters. This adds some surprisingly gratifying moments when you snuff out a handful of ace pilots or eliminate a high-ranking officer when a destroyer blows up. Most of these faces you never see, but it’s still fun to get notified that you didn’t just take out yet another ship or pilot, but someone vital to your enemy’s army.

Multiplayer has a lot of high-tech upgrades as well, mostly in the armory. You can still pick 10 slots in one of several loadouts, with fast-firing energy weapons being our favorite new addition. You can further define your role with one of six rigs. You start with three unlocked: Warfighter, FTL, and Merc. Each rig gives you a unique special ability and a weapon you can use when a point meter fills up, similar to Black Ops III specialists.

Movement In Multiplayer

However, movement in multiplayer doesn’t feel as refined and free-form as Black Ops III. It felt like the series made a big leap last year, and they’re playing it safe in 2016. There’s still a ton of ways to customize your soldier and profile, and lots of fun maps like Throwback with its Happy Days vibes, or Mayday, which feels more like Destiny than traditional COD.

Most Impressive Element

One of the most impressive elements of Call of Duty’s multiplayer at this point is the number of modes. There are lots of varied playlists to keep you busy, and supply drops regularly unlock with new cosmetic items, gestures, or weapons. The mode that’s definitely humming its own tune is zombies. Set in a sci-fi theme park called Space land, survivors have to make their way through various attractions to escape while mowing down waves of aliens and undead.

Playable Characters

Paul Reubens, David Hasselhoff, and the four playable characters are amusing, sounding right at home among the flashy neon lights of the 1980s. It doesn’t have as strong a narrative thread as past zombie trials. However, it’s still very weird and hard. Ever since entering the modern era, Call of Duty has rapidly improved its tech, but Infinite Warfare is not the pinnacle in this era of drones and starships.

That said, a lot is going on in this year’s Call of Duty, including moments no game in the series has given us before. The campaign is a little dry, but multiplayer is deep and rewards you often, incorporating the best ideas from years past. Zombies continue to be any palate-cleanser for those that crave it, and your ticket lets you revisit one of the best shooters ever made.

Infinite Warfare’s defects hurt the Call of Duty series much more this year, going up against several incredible and highly competitive shooters. However, you still get your money’s worth if you enlist.

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