Wot I Think: Call Of Duty: Ghosts – Single Player

If you haven’t read my thoughts on the first three hours of Call Of Duty: Ghosts, it’s worth looking through those first. But now the single player campaign is finished, here’s wot I think:

Ghosts are, we’re told, an elite fighting force more elite than all the other elite fighting forces we’ve played as before. Why? Because they JUST ARE, QUESTION-PERSON. Throughout this insultingly gormless rickety rollercoaster ride, you run into rooms shooting everyone, press F to breach something, press F to catch someone, press F to reprogramme the missile computers, and then run out again shooting everyone. Quite how this makes them different from every other elite fighting force that comes before is never made clear. But by jimminy, it’s shouted at you that they are.

Despite peculiar promises of such significant changes in this latest branch of the infinite franchise, it runs exactly the same as they always do. You follow the other men, do as you’re told, watch as they have all the fun for you, and then sit through another gruesomely po-faced cutscene in which men shout at other men about how incredibly serious the situation is right now.

At the end of my first three hours I wondered if it would improve. Yes, it does. Genuinely, it does. Is it ever good? No, it’s never good. It occasionally becomes a less hateful FPS experience, letting you even run to the left or the right should you wish, and sometimes going so far as to let you go in front. But you have to shake yourself to remember that this means it’s managed to reach the basics of what you should hope for in such a game. In context, it feels like you’ve burst into a Wagnerian opera directed by Stanley Kubrick. In reality you’ve stumbled into a pantomime directed by Michael Bay’s right foot. Perspective.

It attempts to make up for its hollow soul by throwing a twisted understanding of “variety” at you, by having you do all the same things you’ve done in every other FPS for the last six or seven miserable years. At various points in certain levels you’re told to press N to do something. It might be directing missiles to targets via a computer. It might be directing missiles to targets via a computer, or it could be directing missiles to targets via a computer. Each time with a different name. It’s SPARROW this time! Isn’t this novel?! You drive tanks, man turrets, and in two excruciatingly silly sequences, float about in space shooting at improbably vast numbers of enemies, who must be arriving via the local Number 34 Space Bus. And none of it contains a single new idea, nor a single new approach to an old idea. It’s hideously trapped in its own ghastly straitjacket, and the sensation that there were attempts to wriggle free this time out makes it only the sadder to see it fail yet again. Playing the game goes a lot like this:

Ignore the blowhards who tell you it’s only four hours long. It’s six to eight hours long, and by God, it feels like triple that. The interminable cutscenes alone probably make up half of it. As the missions drag on, they begin to hint that they may be climactic – even giving themselves titles like End Of The Line – but instead peter out anticlimactically, ensuring that its pathetic sub-Roland Emmerich story gets dragged out even further. There’s not a moment of wit, nor any attempt at it. There’s no emotion, no charm, no intrigue, no mystery. Just shouting. The attempt to have you care about the absolutely pointless dog comes down to forcing you to lug it around for one mission, making it just a cumbersome obstacle rendering the dreary shooting even less fun.

Enemy AI isn’t terrible. It’s still a farcical target practice, as they pop up from behind their cover. But they at least crawl to different places rather than bob on the spot. There’s the usual array of weapons, seemingly on a curve from poppy to bangy, and grenades, as ever, cause a few flecks of dust to be disturbed when they go off. However, targeting seems dodgy to me, piles of headshots having no effect, and enemies often unable to take damage during animations. It certainly feels clumsy.

More clumsy is getting the PC version to run. From the astonishing 37GB HD space it requires, I can only assume this is the next-gen version of the game that we’re getting, since the current consoles are getting the game at around 16GB. And while my PC isn’t state-of-the-art just now, it’s still plenty powerful enough to run everything else on the market at full whack. With COD, it struggled. And finding out why is tortuous, thanks to the utterly ludicrous need for it to reload your current mission to the last checkpoint every time you change a setting.

This means figuring out whether it’s the anti-aliasing, v-sync, etc, that’s causing issues is a painstaking process with 30 second gaps between each change. And that “etc” represents an awful lot of settings. So yes, it’s fantastic that they’ve put out a proper PC version (runs in a borderless window, or smaller window, as well as fullscreen, too), but figuring them out for your system is deeply frustrating. And don’t think they’re kidding with its 6GB of RAM minimum warning either – with 8GB on my machine, I had to switch absolutely everything else off to get it to run properly. And it still wheezed and coughed. In fact, the game pretty regularly would freeze for around 10 seconds at a time – I’ve yet to discover if that’s my issue, or a common one. And also in that camp, the madness of the mouse occasionally going loony. Turning suddenly accelerates, meaning a peek to the left has you facing the opposite direction, which is obviously useless for FPS action, and damned confusing.

Obviously COD games gain their critical success via their multiplayer, and I’ve not looked at that. This is a review of the single-player, which it’s crucial to remember is what most purchasers of the game will ever play. And it’s absolutely awful.

Yes, it’s pretty cool when an entire town floods. But you don’t get to appreciate it. Do so and you’ll drown in it, rather than be able to pick a piece of high ground and enjoy the spectacle. This is COD, so your instructions are to go to the left and under that door, whether you like it or not. And it’s impressive that they so incredibly realised a devastated baseball park in meticulous detail. But try to take it in and you’ll die, either from bullets, or more likely the game just declaring itself over because your moment of looking wasn’t in its script.

As a result of this, despite the extraordinary job of the background designers and level crafters, there’s never, ever a sense of place. An oil rig is a jungle is a mountaintop plaza. It’s corridors, no matter how gorgeous the walls, and you’re to stare forward at the men’s bottoms unless there’s a building falling over. Do as you’re told, or the game throws its toys out of the pram and refuses to carry on.

It’ll make another billion dollars, and they’re already making the next one that will be exactly the same, and the incredible potential will yet again consume its own fetid tail. The circlejerk of life.


  1. haowan says:

    review more entertaining than game

  2. Forceflow says:

    Well written, John.
    You had me in stitches.

  3. Ergates_Antius says:

    So, you didn’t like it then?

    • pepperfez says:


    • HothMonster says:


      But I really I want to know how the cat feels about it.

      • Horg says:

        This. When we got our first score bu Lucy the kitten, I had hope for a new meta scoring system we could all get behind. But no, we have not heard from her since. Make it happen John : |

    • Totally heterosexual says:

      3 out of 5 Citizen Kane’s.

  4. BLACKOUT-MK2 says:

    I couldn’t agree more with this review, especially the last part. It will continue to make money with no noticeable changes, and mindless dorks will buy into it just like they blindly buy into apple products. A shame when you think of how many fantastic games are out there that make nowhere near what they deserve. A well written review and it certainly made me chuckle.

    • draglikepull says:

      I wonder if it will. There’s a ton of hype behind Titanfall, made by the guys who made COD famous, and I think there’s a reasonable chance it could dethrone the COD juggernaut.

      • airmikee99 says:

        COD Ghosts made 1 billion in sales on its first day. There’s no way Titanfall is going to dethrone it.

        • Bull0 says:

          I think that announcement was that they’ve shipped $1bn of retail stock, not that it’s sold $1bn at retail.

        • FurryLippedSquid says:

          No, it didn’t. Activision said they had supplied stores with stock worth 1 billion, that’s all.

          Edit: Ninja’d.

          • airmikee99 says:

            That’s not what a Google News search says, with 823 sources and counting. Considering that articles about the release of GTA V and other blockbuster games uses the same terminology:

            The Guardian:
            “Grand Theft Auto 5: 29m sales spur soaring financials for its publisher Sales to retailers fuel quarterly revenues of $1.27bn for Take-Two Interactive, which praises timing of GTA 5 release”

            “Grand Theft Auto V has officially hit “preposterous” levels of financial success: Rockstar has sold-in close to 29 million copies of their latest open-world monstrosity, the corporate overlords at Take-Two announced today. 29 million. Twenty-nine million. I’ll let you stop and pick your jaw up off the floor now. (Note: “sold-in” means they sold the games to stores, not necessarily to customers. Take-Two isn’t saying how many copies they sold to human beings. (We asked.))”

            “In its second quarter 2014 earnings report today, Take-Two revealed that nearly 29 million copies of Grand Theft Auto V have been sold-in. While it’s worth noting that this figure refers to units sold-in to retailers”

            Since Take-Two and Rockstar haven’t announced anything other than sales to stores, and that’s all Activision has announced as well, it’s not disingenuous to say that COD:Ghost has sold more than GTA V, because those are the only sales figures that any of the companies have released so far. When one of them changes their mind and releases actual sales to customers, then you can factually say otherwise.

          • Bull0 says:

            @airmikee99 the announcement from Activision specifically says they’ve sold $1bn into retail, I think there is a distinction between that and actual sales to people but as you’ve rightly pointed out, firms don’t make this easy to understand with all the ambiguity

            link to investor.activision.com

    • Lawful Evil says:

      People buy this game because they like it. Wot they like need not be wot you, me or anyone else like. Oh, how many times have I wished for more sequels of my favorite games, even if the only noticeable change would be a different plot. This is a matter of taste. A bad taste, perhaps, but it nonetheless brings enjoyment to those who play the game.

      • Bull0 says:

        Yeah, they’re ruining gaming though. If they didn’t buy this they’d buy all those great indie games instead, because of reasons.

        Hating the game is fine, that’s opinion, sneering at the people who buy it is a bit less so, I think.

        • Drake Sigar says:

          Indeed. To equate a sale for a shallow popcorn game to a lost sale for an Indi game is crazy. Hell, there’s quite a few people who buy Call of Duty games and don’t even play anything else. I’ve got one of them in my house. They won’t leave.

          • Bull0 says:

            And I, for example, buy all the call of duty games, and also enjoy a healthy diet of indies. So I’m not really doing any harm to anyone. I’m struggling to picture this guy who would’ve bought PA and Spelunky if not for Ghosts

          • Reapy says:

            You could argue that COD has created the bustling indie scene in fact. Imagine if the AAA publishers were taking risks and trying different small games? Indies would be fucked, why buy this sorta ok platformer when there is a AAA production value one that does the same thing?

      • Baboonanza says:

        And what you think is great is someone else’s idea of ‘bad taste’. This is the game equivalent of Transformers 3 and there are plenty of people who enjoyed that.

        • mpk says:

          This is the game equivalent of Transformers 3 and there are plenty of people who enjoyed that.

          I fear those people.

          • airmikee99 says:

            If you don’t like the Transformers movies, how do you feel about the original Transformers cartoons? They’re just as stupid, just as dumb, and the plots are just as holey, people hold them up as being good because they’re remembering those episodes through the eyes of childhood. In one episode Megatron steals a device that can create infinite energy, and instead of using that device to replenish Cybertron, he instead activates it on Earth to make energon cubes to take back to Cybertron.

            Netflix has all the original cartoons, go back and watch them, if you still think Michael Bay did anything to ruin the Transformers story, watch them again, and again, and again.

          • mpk says:

            My lack of enjoyment of the Michael Bay Transformers movies has absolutely zero to do with the franchise, with any lingering love for a TV show I saw a few episodes of in the 1980s and can barely remember, and neither does it have much to do with plot holes or insane leaps of movie logic. They are big budget action movies and these things are sometimes to be expected.

            Instead, my lack of enjoyment of the Michael Bay Transformers movies comes from the fact that they are bad movies, and that I find his sensibilities as a director to be particularly offensive.

          • malkav11 says:

            I’m pretty sure the original Transformers cartoons didn’t feature racist caricature robots that were clearly supposed to be funny while not actually achieving anything remotely connected to comedy.

          • Don Reba says:

            Beast Machines had a pretty decent plot.

      • dsch says:

        People read JW articles because they want to feel superior to mindless dolts/get outraged about something. Who are you to judge them for that? So stop killing the buzz, bro.

    • Drake Sigar says:

      So how’s that Gutair Hero doing?

      • Henke says:

        He’s not doing well I’m afraid, too much air in his guts. :|

    • jackflash says:

      Yeah! Why would anyone ever buy an Apple product! Jeez! People are such zombies for liking things that Grownups Like You don’t!

    • Geebs says:

      Don’t be an arse, us mindless people who buy apple products are a totally different demographic.

      P.S. Pauper

      • Lanfranc says:

        Little known fact: mindless people mostly buy Apple products because they all come with a complimentary digital clone of Jony Ive’s brain. It’s very convenient that way.

        • Geebs says:

          Speaking of which, isn’t it appropriate how Jony Ive’s brain is passively cooled?

    • Zogtee says:

      It is remarkable that with the tons of resources and genuine talent behind these games, it still doesn’t get any better than this. They don’t need to take risks or get overly creative, just deliver a solid and well-crafted experience, but we’re still not getting that.

      It’s also a bit disturbing that a game that constantly tells you what to do is so wildly popular. Our desire to obey and follow orders is appearantly very strong.

    • Dr I am a Doctor says:


  5. blobb says:


  6. GernauMorat says:

    This Neogaf thread pretty much has it as well:

    link to neogaf.com

  7. bills6693 says:

    After all the discussion on the last article.

    I wish they’d make another one based in WW2, or in another historical war (Korea & Vietnam spring to mind. Gulf war maybe).

    I think a lot of the reason that the campaigns have gotten worse since the first games is that the setting is removed from reality. World War 2 was a ‘real’ situation, you were playing through the tales of real soldiers (to an extent). You felt for them in the horror of war.

    I feel something like Korea might be good because its not WW2 again, and its starting to introduce a few new things (better weapons, helicopters & jets in their earliest forms) but is still one of those ‘horrific’ wars. I think it would suit the game well, and make for some interesting asymmetrical gameplay like the Japanese-American in COD5 did.

    Maybe then – with a little more options in the campaign and slightly less scripted scenes – they’re good but not too much, let scenes happen while giving the player control to watch them or to do their own thing, to activate the scene or not etc – would go a looong way to making a good game.

    • malkav11 says:

      Call of Duty: World at War was easily the worst of the series that I’ve played (I started with #4 and continued through part of Black Ops II) and it was set in WWII. I don’t think the setting is the problem, except insofar as they need to have new settings on a regular basis to keep the spectacle fresh. (Insofar as it can be fresh, anyway. Obviously it’s many of the same tricks repeated.)

  8. Orija says:

    One good consequence of the Cowadutty franchise is the annual ass-kicking that Walker does.

  9. Kid_A says:

    So… 8.8/10?

  10. povu says:

    Calling this a ‘proper PC version’ is giving the game way too much credit.

    • Bull0 says:

      The options are there but it’s poorly optimised to say the least.

    • HadToLogin says:

      So true, number of issues this port has is so big that it’s really strange to call it proper-version. Maybe John just took his last-year text, put some game-releated info and screenies and was done with it?

      Wouldn’t blame him, through. They sell same stuff every year, so why not write same stuff every year…

    • iainl says:

      I think “Proper PC version” means “using the same codeline as the PS4/Bone versions, not the 360/PS3 line like EA did with FIFA this year”, alongside the stuff like handling running in a window, resolutions (I’m looking at you, Dark Souls) and so on.

  11. merbert says:

    Well done John!

    About time someone called Activision on their populist crud.

    Like many to this site, I loved FPS’s when they were original and challenging and exciting….now the “rinse and repeat” nature of this form of game is really dis-heartening.

    Give it over developers, the jig is up….the Emperor is naked.

    P.S. I particularly liked this line….

    ” In context, it feels like you’ve burst into a Wagnerian opera directed by Stanley Kubrick. In reality you’ve stumbled into a pantomime directed by Michael Bay’s right foot. Perspective.”


    • Reapy says:

      Yeah… i mean nobody makes fun of COD, about time someone did!!

      Article summary: Call of Duty is Call of Duty.

  12. Loyal_Viggo says:

    I’ve got an idea, why don’t they introduce some kind of secret multiplayer option where you can fight Nazi Zombies?

    That would be really unique, nobody’s done a game with Nazi Zombies in it before.

    I’ll buy two copies.

  13. Auru says:

    This game is still going to sell like hot cakes despite it being lazy, run of the mill and pretty much backwards by todays standards.

    I wonder when people are going to catch onto CoD and say no :(

    • Laurentius says:

      But why do you care ? Is it your money that is being spent on or your time being wasted ?

      • draglikepull says:

        The main reason to care if you’re not a COD fan is that its massive success is skewing the development priorities for other games. The fact that major publishers try to shoehorn awful multiplayer modes into games that ought to remain single-player experiences is significantly influenced by the way that COD found success.

        If people want to play bland manshooters until their face turns blue I don’t really care. But when it starts disrupting the development of games that I do like, that’s when it becomes a problem for me.

        • Laurentius says:

          I’ve yet to see a proof for that kind of reasoning. This argument is thrown around like 100% proven and one that goes without saying. In fact it is not. What are these games that development process were disrupted by CoD succes ?

          • Philomelle says:

            Try to look up some interviews about Spec Ops: The Line. In one interview, the game’s chief designer actually calls the game’s multiplayer a vile cancerous tumor that took away from the game’s purpose and unnecessarily wasted a lot of cash because the marketing team went “Oh hurr semi-modern FPS = Call of Duty = need multiplayer to succeed durr”.

            Same with Tomb Raider. The development team has only been given post-release budget for developing multiplayer DLC despite the fans repeatedly stating they don’t want the game to have multiplayer at all.

            So yes, there are games whose developed got screwed over because the publishers keep using Call of Duty as an example of a quality product, stealing from its feature list and ignoring fans’ requests to stop doing that.

          • Laurentius says:

            Oh i’ve heard plenty excuses from devs blaming everything on earth only not just their own decision. Notion on tucking mulitplayer was on in full force way before CoD succes. Tomb Raider MP mode is rather directly inspired by Uncharted MP and thing is mulitplayer or not neither of this two games (or other games like ME3, etc ) highs or lows aren’t infricted even semi directly by CoD succes.

          • FriendlyFire says:

            The best example I have actually is the reverse: Battlefield 3 and 4’s campaigns are obvious Call of Duty clones and are terrible. Imagine the additional work they could’ve put into the MP or the engine if they didn’t have to waste time making a poor SP campaign (you know, like back with BF2/1942).

          • Philomelle says:

            Except that it isn’t their decision in plenty of cases. The main Spec Ops development team actually refused to work on the multiplayer, they let the publisher outsource it to some other team. It’s why the game doesn’t have a single multiplayer achievement or any other references to having multiplayer outside of, well, the multiplayer button on the main screen. It was a feature that was never intended to exist and was shoehorned in by the publisher to make the game more like Call of Duty. The developers allowed it to exist because the publisher wouldn’t give them money to make the game otherwise.

            The point is, a lot of large publishers treat multiplayer as a necessary feature and not an optional thing. Call of Duty’s success is very heavily responsible for that.

          • Laurentius says:

            @Philomelle, FriendlyFire

            So ? Again, notion of tucking multiplayer was already in full force before CoD succes. I’m not goiing to defend big AAA publishers for their often harmful decision but seriously connecting it with CoD is shody at best. EA was already making annual itterations of their sports games since nineties. Really you can’t blame everything that is wrong with industry at CoD.
            You see i can imagine quite a bit but i try to look at reality as well. BF3/4 MP would be the same in my opinion without SP campagin just because DICE would receive less money and time from publisher because they were only working on MP. Do you really belive that publishers who operate on basis : invest the least money, ship the game as fast possible, make biggest profits possible do this becasue CoD succes influence ?

          • Firesaber says:

            link to n4g.com

            That’s just 1 example, but for a few years there, everyone ‘wanted Call of Duty’s audience”. They said it again when Mass Effect 3 was coming out.

            It really has skewed what the industry tries to do with any kind of ‘shooter’ title.

          • KwisatzHaderach says:

            The clearest example has to be Crysis. Both the MP and the SP of the second and third part were badly and massively influenced by the CoD formula. Crysis Wars was actually a very enjoyable battlefieldessque multiplayer. Power struggle required team play, ressource management and strategical thinking. There were no unlocks.
            Unlocks in general: I may be mistaken, but for me they are a cancer that was popularized with the success of CoD.

            Just open your eyes to how the industry of FPSes has changed since CoD rules the yearly charts. The only decent AAA FPS I’ve played in ages was Metro LL. No NOLF anymore, no Jedi Knight anymore.

          • Laurentius says:

            OK, I don’t see any proof for this claims, just excuses but fine you want to blame people who buys CoD for anything that is wrong with industry then do so but i will remain on my island with reflection that people who spend their own money and time on these games doesn’t affect me in the slightest and i will not be bothered to care if these game will sell or won’t sell milions of copies.

          • KwisatzHaderach says:

            How very weird! My rl name is Laurentius! Mhhhh, what happened?… doens’t help that I’m playing The Swapper right now…

          • airmikee99 says:

            I’m not a huge first person shooter player, I spent months of my life playing Doom, Castle Wolfenstein, Turok, and then Perfect Dark on the N64, and then got into the first Halo on the Xbox, but shortly after that I discovered WoW and didn’t play another FPS until last year when I started Crysis, Crysis 2, and Rage.

            I have no idea what people are talking about when they whine about CoD ruining other games, aside from the graphics quality of post-CoD games, they play exactly the same as pre-CoD games. I’m starting to think people just like to bitch because they can.

            If you don’t like a game, great, don’t like it, there are only OVER 9000 other games to play. But mocking people because they prefer a different game? Yeah, you’ve got the real upperhand on that one.

          • P.Funk says:

            Laurentius seems to think there’s no proof to show how much mainstream development is affected by the monster successes within a particular marketplace.

            I’ve been gaming since the mid 90s and I have observed plenty of trend based changes in how games are made. These trends are set by massively successful titles like Call of Duty. If you refuse to acknowledge this then you’re just pig headed and stuck in “hating on the haters” mode.

            Try reading some insights from developers, or do you write those off as excuses too? God knows what you would consider proof given your attitude.

        • Bull0 says:

          Blaming COD’s success instead of blaming publishers that lean on developers to (or developers who choose to) try to shoe-horn a multiplayer mode in where it isn’t wanted/they can’t afford to do it right/it compromises their original vision is a bit backwards though, isn’t it? We can’t just blame the people making the mistakes?

          • HadToLogin says:

            Hard to blame publishers wanting their own CoD success without blaming CoD success. Hell, I would even say CoD itself is only trying to outdid it’s success (and, looking at $$$, it’s able to) – that’s why it can’t change, as change means fans-turning-into-enemies.

          • Bull0 says:

            No, not blaming publishers for wanting CoD’s success, that isn’t what I said. Publishers should always want their games to be a success! No, I blame publishers for pushing the devs into shoehorning a half-arsed cod-alike multiplayer into a game, at great expense and to the detriment of the core design. The fact that they’re doing that because CoD is a big success isn’t relevant to me – it shouldn’t be relevant to them, either, because it doesn’t work, that’s why Spec Ops didn’t sell a bajillion copies

        • Slight0 says:

          Huh. I always thought the hatred from CoD came from the idea that it stands as proof that a lot of gamers will buy the same thing over and over again with little to no differences for full price. This encourages other companies to do the same thing, constantly giving poor games sequels and doing little in the way of innovation or breaking new ground in sequels that people want. It stands as shining proof that the reason AAA companies hardly innovate is because they don’t have to. Sure there are other smaller examples of this but CoD really brought it to light and didn’t try to hide it.

          To me that sounds like a perfectly good reason to stigmatize CoD and the trend it’s created and certainly to stigmatize being a consumer that subscribes to that trend.

          • Williz says:

            So why don’t more people hate on Pokemon?

          • jrodman says:

            I think most people put “games for kids” in a different category when it comes to things like repetition.

    • xao says:

      We’ll quit buying it when it stops being an entertaining, easily accessible shooter. In the meantime, people that want to be the gatekeepers for gaming can sod right off.

  14. deadly.by.design says:

    Why CoD: Ghosts requires 6GB of memory:

    According to the guy in the video, there’s a ton of wasted space and it’s basically to discourage custom modding & cheating. Most of the required applications for that are only 32bit. Or something.

    Also, someone posted a video that mashed up the Ghosts ending with MW2, and they are nearly identical.
    link to youtube.com (spoilers)

    • DanMan says:

      /me shakes his head in disbelieve

      I enjoyed watching the video in the review. Didn’t expect anything else, so…

    • GamesInquirer says:

      If only the game’s biggest problem was 18 seconds of recycled cut scene animations. Fixating on that just gives breathing room to the real issues.

      • Deadly Sinner says:

        No it doesn’t. It’s just an indicator of how much of Call of Duty is recycled. Sure, they carry over tons of assets from game to game, but they’ve never been so blatant as to reuse an entire sequence from an earlier game.

    • njursten says:

      I don’t think that guy really knows what he’s talking about. I think those question marks just means the memory is swapped out and can’t be read currently.

  15. Bine says:

    Singleplayer: Atrocious.
    Multiplayer: Exactly what i paid $60 for. The same thing as the year before last.
    Only gripes: Two. No server browser still. What’s so hard about allowing rented Dedi servers? Secondly, where is my Search and Destroy!? WHERE IS IT?! ARRRGH.

    The thing with CoD, you know what you are getting. Very very slight improvements but essentially the same game. That’s what I purchased. Cod MW2. New paint. Glorified DLC? Maybe. But at least I know what I am getting. (Thats not to say i dont like innovation!)

    • squareking says:


      • HadToLogin says:

        Or McDonalds – wherever you buy Big Mac, it’s same Big Mac. No matter when you buy CoD, it’s same CoD.

        • airmikee99 says:

          Unless you’re in India, in which case the Big Mac has chicken instead of beef. ;)

        • Slight0 says:

          Except it makes sense to buy another big mac cause the last big mac you ate is splattered all over the back of your toilet.

          Whereas with CoD you’re just needlessly buying two of the same thing. If you know what you’re getting, why throw away $60 dollars to a buy a game you already own?

    • xao says:

      Plus, to fans of the game the sum of the multitude of incremental improvements in a game you’re likely to play for a hundred hours or more can be well worth the sixty bucks. I know I’d drop sixty bucks for additional content and minor systems improvements in Dark Souls in a heartbeat.

  16. Freud says:

    It’s not really a review but more of a lust murder.

  17. kael13 says:

    Somehow this game scored higher than BF4 on IGN. Y’know, I only visit those sites for the other kind of laughs.

    • Bull0 says:

      BF4 got 8.5, this got 8.8. They were reviewed by different people and the numbers are very very close, particularly given that they’re entirely arbitrary numeric expressions of the reviewer’s overall opinion of the game. There’s a reason RPS don’t use scores.

      If this were a 10 and BF4 a 6, or something, I might care.

  18. remoteDefecator says:

    It’s hard to believe that there are so many people who can’t wait to throw down 60 bucks for 6-8 hours of railroad shooting gallery. AAA games get less appealing every year, with CoD leading the way.

    • Jimbo says:

      That’s not what they’re throwing down 60 bucks for.

      • JimboDeany says:

        Jimbo is correct – it appears lots of people are happy to spend $60 on a game that is basically the same as the last one, just because it may be incrementally better and this is the one that everyone else will be playing because of this same reason…… it seems like a really good way of making money to me…..

        Jimbo also has an excellent name

        • airmikee99 says:

          Yep, charging full price for incremental upgrades works quite well, it’s catapulted Apple to one of the most valuable companies of all time. Can’t really blame game publishers for following the same model, it’s the customers that deserve the blame for the success of this business model. If people didn’t participate, companies wouldn’t do it.

          • JimboDeany says:

            I agree entirely. The same has been happening with FIFA and PES for a decade. The only thing that will stop it is the gradual decline in people willing to purchase which, judging by day one sales figures, doesn’t look like it’ll happen anytime soon!!!!

            Just need to find me some cheap shares in Activision…..

          • ScottTFrazer says:

            There’s always a lot of Apple-hate on RPS, never really figured out why, but this comparison you’ve made doesn’t hold up.

            “Yep, charging full price for incremental upgrades works quite well, it’s catapulted Apple to one of the most valuable companies of all time.”

            What incremental upgrade does Apple charge full price for exactly?

            Apple releases updates to their hardware roughly once a year. Some are minor, some are not. Absolutely none are required. If you’re happy with an iPhone 5, why on earth would you buy a 5s? And why should Apple discount a 5s for you because you bought a 5? There’s nothing Apple is doing that’s compelling you to abandon your purchase.

            And in direct opposition, Apple’s software updates are now effectively free. People who bought a Macbook Air last year get an extra hour of usable battery life for free thanks to a major OS release that costs nothing.

            Finally, unlike most other gear, Apple stuff retains an enormous amount of its resale value. The iPhone 4 is now 3 years old and still sells regularly on ebay for over $100.

          • airmikee99 says:

            RE: ScottTFrazer

            I don’t hate Apple, I don’t like Apple either, I nothing Apple. I was making a statement of fact. Most of Apples devices are incremental upgrades over the previous version, a new port, a new card, but pretty much the same as the prior model.
            link to engadget.com
            A new processor, cameras, and a gyroscope. Definitely sounds incremental to me.

            The iPhone 3G – 3GS was a significant improvement, faster processor, more memory, better camera, voice control, oleophobic display, HDSPA, and they offered a 32GB model for the first time. That’s a huge improvement.
            But compare the 3G to the original iPhone and the only real difference is battery life.
            The iPhone 4 and 4S are almost identical, aside from a better camera and processor, but the iPhone 5 is a huge upgrade over the 4S.

            Your devotion to Apple is fairly obvious, but please don’t mistake my criticism of facts about Apple to be hate towards Apple, again, I NOTHING Apple. Apple does incremental upgrades and charges full price for them. Do you have any facts to counter my claim, or are you just going to pull another opinion from your ass?

          • drinniol says:

            “But compare the 3G to the original iPhone and the only real difference is battery life.”

            That and the whole fucking 3G being included :P

          • airmikee99 says:

            RE: drinniol

            True enough, but, since 3G had been the standard for almost 5 years before the first iPhone, it was an incremental upgrade since there’s no reason it shouldn’t have been in the first model to begin with. :)

          • Geebs says:

            Re: full price for incremental upgrades in hardware:- yeah, and along with the incremental upgrade from iPhone to iPhone 3G, when you buy the second one you also get another phone. Sheesh.

          • airmikee99 says:

            RE: Geebs

            Is that some half assed attempt to make a stupid comment about how CoD games are all the same?

            If you bought CoD:BO2 and CoD:Ghosts you have TWO GAMES, sheesh.

            For the record I have never purchased a CoD game, and have no desire to do so, just like I nothing Apple, I nothing CoD.

          • Geebs says:

            You sure do ‘nothing’ Apple a lot. And giving away software for free to support hardware sales is still not the same thing as charging for software

          • airmikee99 says:

            Let me get this straight, I can’t talk about Apple, without caring about them one way or another. Since you’ve made two posts about me, does that mean you care about me?

            Oh, I get it now. You can’t separate an emotional response from an intellectual response. You think that just because I’ve considered and thought about Apple that somehow betrays some kind of inner feelings about Apple. Sorry to burst your bubble, kid, not all of us are as emotionally immature as you. Some of us can respond to stimuli without having an emotional response.

          • Geebs says:

            Who said anything about emotion? You are empirically talking gibberish.

        • Jimbo says:

          True, I do have an excellent name, but the people who re-up on CoD every year are happy to pay $60 for it because they know they’re gonna get a few hundred hours of entertainment out of the multiplayer. In that context, $60 is a reasonable price to ask. The campaign adds some value to the package, but it’s obviously not what most people are there for. For people who do enjoy it, it offers incredibly good value entertainment by any standard.

          It’s easy to look down our noses at CoD fans, but for people who can maybe only afford to buy one or two games a year, you could probably do a lot worse than having one of them be CoD. If that’s what people want to spend their money on then good luck to them. I think people who have an active interest in gaming in general should avoid it like the plague and support more creative endeavours, but the whole ‘durr hurr, CoD fans are just too stupid to know any better’ attitude around here is gross and it always has been. They just like something different to us, and that’s absolutely fine.

          • I Got Pineapples says:

            There is actually something really genuinely ugly going on there and the lack of self-awareness about it is kind of disturbing.

          • Bull0 says:

            Nailed it Jimbo

          • derbefrier says:

            was getting ready to type something like this. I have many friends who buy CoD every year. They love it in spite of being completely aware of what the game is. They love the multiplayer and cant get enough of it. They are not poor, they are not stupid(at least compared to you monkeys :P), and they also love many of the same games we do. Really it just boils down to that typical judgemental high school bullshit. Jocks vs. nerds, preps vs freaks or whatever. It all boils down to “these people like something different than us so they must be stupid or something”
            Which is why i usually stay awyaw from this shit

          • Slight0 says:

            Two things there Jimbo.

            “people who re-up on CoD every year are happy to pay $60 for it because they know they’re gonna get a few hundred hours of entertainment out of the multiplayer”

            What is preventing them from getting those same hundred hours out of the existing CoD game they have? You’re telling me the new CoD has a hundred hours worth of new multiplayer content? If the experience doesn’t change at all why is it worth investing in?

            I’m genuinely curious by the way; I’m not trying to put a spin on those questions.

            “for people who can maybe only afford to buy one or two games a year, you could probably do a lot worse than having one of them be CoD”

            R-Really? Your limit is two games and a marginally different experience is worth one of those slots than a totally new experience?

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            I’ve got no problem looking down my nose at the stereotypical gamers who enjoy buying and playing CoD year after year. The overall community is spiteful, bigoted and homophobic, partially made up of too many twelve-year-olds who shouldn’t have received the game in the first place, and the few players who have a modicum of decency are always drowned out by cries of “shut up fagget” and “fuck you niggr”. What, people think Modern Warfare and its ilk have a bad reputation simply because they sell better than some beloved indie game?

            I don’t play the series (at least not since my ill-advised venture into MW2), I don’t have friends that play the series, and I don’t associate in any way with fans of the series. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a game mass-produced specifically for dimwitted bros and uncouth little teens.

            If someone happens to be a mature, reasonable adult who enjoys CoD, good on them. It’s just too bad they’re not representative of the rest of the playerbase.

          • airmikee99 says:

            RE: SkittleDiddler

            “I’ve got no problem looking down my nose at the stereotypical gamers who enjoy buying and playing CoD year after year. The overall community is spiteful, bigoted and homophobic, partially made up of too many twelve-year-olds who shouldn’t have received the game in the first place, and the few players who have a modicum of decency are always drowned out by cries of “shut up fagget” and “fuck you niggr”.”

            So you’re saying it’s almost exactly like every other game community?

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            Oh, it’s certainly like some other gaming communities I can think of, but it’s certainly not like every other gaming community.

          • airmikee99 says:

            Fair enough. The only real gaming community I participated in was WoW, and that was enough to turn me off participating in any other gaming communities for years. Is CoD’s as bad as WoW’s community?

          • Jimbo says:

            “What is preventing them from getting those same hundred hours out of the existing CoD game they have? You’re telling me the new CoD has a hundred hours worth of new multiplayer content? If the experience doesn’t change at all why is it worth investing in?”

            1. Their free will, coupled with the impossibility of getting the ‘same’ experience from two different games (no matter how slight that difference may be).
            2. I’m not sure you can measure multiplayer content in hours exactly (that’s a bit like measuring a chess board in hours) but yes, evidently there’s enough new multiplayer content to sustain hundreds of hours worth of entertainment for millions of people, at a price they’re willing to pay for it.
            3. Presumably it does change ‘at all’. Who are we to decide what constitutes ‘enough’ change for other people? ~20m people are apparently happy enough with the deal to go take them up on it every year. I hope that changes soon, but I’m not going to tell them they’re wrong for doing it.

            “R-Really? Your limit is two games and a marginally different experience is worth one of those slots than a totally new experience?”

            Yes, same as most will go buy a TV license before blowing the last of their money on trying a parachute jump or whatever. It r-really can’t be news to you that this is how the vast majority of humans operate.


            Frankly your post says more about you than it does about CoD players. Especially the dimwitted part. Come back with an argument less shitty than “I haven’t even played it in years but somehow am in a position to pass myself off as an expert on the player base” and I might go to the trouble of taking it apart for you. Or don’t, that’d be even better.

          • Bull0 says:

            Yeah, all those CoD players are little shits, but you sound like a real peach, Skittles. Don’t worry; not in a massive hurry to associate with you either petal. You kind of completely proved Jim’s point, there

          • vagabond says:

            I haven’t played any CoD multiplayer, but I’ve played BF3, and am now playing BF4 multiplayer, and since the biggest thing that provides variety within the game is the layout of the maps, moving to a new game with entirely new maps probably does provide these people with $60 worth of new multiplayer shennanigans.

          • xao says:


            I’m a pretty casual Call of Duty player, but in my experience the games have pretty significantly different multiplayer experiences. In part this is due to very different maps. In Black Ops 2 the maps were, on average, small to the point of being cramped, with three primary lanes linking each end. This tended to lead towards CQB, quick scoping snipers, and either frenetic rushing or lane control gameplay. In Ghosts, the maps are sprawling monsters with a bevy of flanking routes. This tends to result in a slower tactical pace, a heavier emphasis on long range engagement, and it’s much harder to lockdown an area without help promoting teamwork. Thus far, the map styles of each game have provided very different gaming experiences in my opinion.

            Most of the upgrades to the combat itself are minor, but there are dozens if not hundreds of these tweaks made in each iteration. A lot of the mockery that CoD gets for its similarity focuses on highlighting a handful of these changes and belittling their impact. In actuality the sum total of these changes can significantly alter the feel of the game. Right now, while the tactical pace of Ghosts is slower, Ghost’s combat feels much quicker and more decisive than Black Ops 2’s.

            All in all, it looks to be worth the sixty bucks for me. It may not be for you. If not, that’s cool.


            Please reference Tycho re: gates and gatekeepers in geekery.

          • analydilatedcorporatestyle says:

            The morning game, SkittleDiddler vs Jimbo, had an eventful and entertaining first half with Jimbo scoring first but SkittleDiddler pulled one back with some skilful interplay. The second half was a bit of a dull affair with each side trading punches but not connecting. The game petered out and finished as a score draw, a fair result at the end of the day as they were both right.

  19. Laurentius says:

    I don’t intend to buy it ever or even play it but actually I’m kinda happy that this series exists and sell well if only for those lamenting reviews and all hating comments and “oh the humanity” serious head shaking, it somehow cheer me up.

    • I Got Pineapples says:

      Yeah. It’s not really my cup of tea either, though I actually kinda liked the first Blops in a kind of MGS-ish way but some of the ‘See how much snarky hate I can pour on this because there is honestly nothing more critically or intellectually daring at this point than declaring your distaste for the CoD series’ has gotten to the point where I wonder if anyone actually buys this game.

      • colw00t says:

        I don’t care how dumb it is, I still love CODBLOPS. The first level you (try to) assassinate Fidel Castro, and in the second level you break out of a hellish russian prison…using a minigun that fires explosions and motorcycles with the shotgun from Terminator 2. A couple of missions after that I’m shooting down Russian ICBMs with a missile launcher that I find hidden in an air conditioner. I don’t care what anyone says, that game was great.

  20. Synesthesia says:

    I’m just gonna leave this here…

    • FurryLippedSquid says:


      Good God…

    • Loyal_Viggo says:

      Stormtrooper: Let me see your identification.
      Obi-Wan: [with a small wave of his hand] You don’t need to see his identification.
      Stormtrooper: We don’t need to see his identification.
      Obi-Wan: These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.
      Stormtrooper: These aren’t the droids we’re looking for.
      Obi-Wan: He can go about his business.
      Stormtrooper: You can go about your business.
      Obi-Wan: Move along.
      Stormtrooper: Move along… move along.

  21. Rich says:

    So it’s a text based adventure game then? Cool.

  22. ffordesoon says:

    Am I the only one who would pay the full $60 for this exact game if I got a whole campaign’s worth of John Walker commentary in the same style as the video?

    • Jason Moyer says:

      Someone needs to mod the audio to add commentary written by Mr Walker and spoken by the guy from the DOT DOT DOT video.

  23. Thurgret says:

    I went to take a look, and it has been almost universally panned by user reviews on Metacritic. Though now I look back at CODBLOPS, it was panned too. I’m somewhat surprised by that, actually.

    Good piece, John.

  24. XhomeB says:

    Yeah… And the last time I mentioned that Blood, Duke 3D, Quake 1&2 have vastly superior single player campaigns compared to the trash CoD offers, some fanboys told me it’s “NOSTALGIA”.
    Sure, and the Earth is flat.

  25. Dozer says:

    John, I’m going to be hiring you out as a voice actor for games. I want to hear “Do de do de doo…. aww. Do de do de doo…. aww” as the sprint bar refills.

  26. sventoby says:

    Is the series really this far off the rails? CoD1 is one of my favorite FPS games ever and CoD4 was excellent. Never tried the others aside from multiplayer.

  27. SuicideKing says:

    John, the mouse issue is a Windows 8.1 issue (unless you’re not running that, in which case, ignore this).

  28. Buffer117 says:

    Great piece John and as usual with COD the last few years I wont be buying.

    I do wonder where the next evolution in the FPS is though? We all seem to agree that they are not evolving, but I’m not sure how they are going to. I read an an argument about HL3 that said the reason Valve probably hasn’t released it is they haven’t found that game changing wow that will once again revolutionise FPS’s. Its probably true.

    I just wish they’d stop making things prettier and invest all that marketing money into the AI, like you said most FPS’s are just shooting galleries. I cannot remember a time now when a FPS ever made me go wow that wasn’t scripted. I would love to play a FPS and for the AI to do something that made me think, holy shit, that wasn’t a person that just made that decision! Instead of reams of enemies throwing their life away by running at my loaded gun.

    • SuicideKing says:

      Arma III.

      Though don’t go in looking for spectacular AI.

  29. SuicideKing says:

    @WIT: Hahaha nice. Enjoyed it. Oh John, do play BF4 as well. :D

    BTW, i seriously recommend playing ArmA III’s Episode I, especially if you’re looking for a plausible story line. Voice acting isn’t bad, and hey, it’s Arma, you won’t die unless you get yourself killed (i.e. the game won’t force it upon you, except in a bug with the last mission).

  30. realitysconcierge says:

    I absolutely want more videos of John playing video games. That was wonderful. With that said, I don’t think the game’s performance has anything to do with John’s computer. TotalBiscuit has two nvidia titans in his and it still sputtered about as if his rig was four years out of date.

  31. db1331 says:

    I have no doubt the game is complete shit. I don’t think anyone should play it. But you are playing this like you are determined to hate it. If you’re going to bother reviewing a game, don’t play it like a 6 year old kid who is determined not to have any fun at a theme park because he got the wrong Ninja Turtle for his birthday. As badly designed as it may be, the game means for you to move with your squad, as if you are an actual elite soldier. Not sprint ahead full speed and then yell at them for being slow when they come creeping up. If you play it like you couldn’t fucking care less, of course it’s going to be really, really bad. The only thing separating your video from a PewDiePie LP was that you didn’t try to rape one of the enemies (At least not up to the point I watched).

    A lot of good games would suck if you played them with the same amount of disdain on display here. Again, I know Ghosts is terrible. But if you’re going to bother reviewing it at all, at least fucking try, instead of actively searching for everything you can do to create a fail state.

    • Stellar Duck says:

      I get what you’re saying but I wholeheartedly disagree.

      What John was doing isn’t any different from talking over a Transformers movie because it’s so dumb and you’re bored.

      In the face of a game taking itself so serious as a CoD game, all you can do is lighten the mood a bit. It’s just too po faced otherwise. Note: the last CoD game I played was CODBLOPS and by God, was that a dreary experience, but I suppose they may have gotten less stupid from there?

  32. Berzee says:

    So it is F, N, or E you press? The article says F and N, but the video shows E. Is it all of them? (If so: groundbreaking variety!)

    • Berzee says:

      Goodness me, N IS GOGGLE.

    • CookPassBabtridge says:

      Pffft FarCry 1 did ‘V’ for nightvision years ago.
      Also, warthogs that could drive jeeps.

    • GamesInquirer says:

      You can rebind your keys at will, don’t worry.

    • Don Reba says:

      Indie game idea: have the entire control scheme consist of pressing F, U, and N in rapid succession. Every reviewer will say there were tons of fun to be had.

  33. SooSiaal says:

    ” Do as you’re told” Sounds like the perfect army game thing to me

    • SuicideKing says:

      I get what you’re saying, but you can’t be serious. Please, don’t be serious.

    • Trespasser in the Stereo Field says:

      The perfect Army game, except for the “Killing civilians will not be tolerated!” bit. I thought this was supposed to be realistic!

    • xao says:

      Dunno about your Army, but most of the British-style armies delegate both responsibility and authority more heavily than almost any civilian job you’re likely to find.

  34. CedaVelja says:

    6 gb of ram is not actually needed.
    I have 4 gb and after using the patch someone made game worked fine.
    Only trouble was audio stuttering on loading screens.

    • airmikee99 says:

      A few sites are reporting that the 6GB requirement is fake, the game barely needs 2GB.

      • San Pedro says:

        I read that the 6gb requirement was BS too. I don’t know what they’re trying to do there, but I’m not interested in getting the game anyway…

        • airmikee99 says:

          The only real explanation I’ve been able to find for the 6GB requirement would be anti-modding, if the game thinks it needs 6GB it’s not going to hand any RAM over to a mod. I’m not sure if that’s the real reason, or if it even makes sense, but it is the only halfway decent explanation I’ve been able to find on dozens of game sites.

    • Kubrick Stare Nun says:

      I think those absurd requirements are there to make the game seems like it is a “next-gen” to the unaware.

  35. Megakoresh says:

    How can someone make a game that is this boring? What kind of sad excuse did IW have for this kind of crap? I mean they must have played it themselves and seen just how unbelievable dull it is? Right? Ah, who am I kidding…

    They should have named this Fall of Body: The Sedative and sold it in apothecaries, maybe then it would at least have a purpose.

  36. Jerppa says:

    I have only played COD 3 and 4 (and liked them both) but this looks really bad.

  37. Narbotic says:

    ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ Give more John vids!

    made me cry funny tears of laughing. thanks for that.

  38. Mr. Bottomhat says:

    It’s like Half-life never happened.

    • Jerppa says:

      Actually, Half-Life was the first shooter filled with scripted scenes so you’re barking at the wrong tree here.

      • Stellar Duck says:

        In a sense, yes, he is.

        But I’d argue that Valve showed how much scripted events can impact a game and the players connection to it.

        Infinity Ward, from CoD4 and onwards, took all the wrong lessons. I remember a scene in the godawful CoD 4 where enemies would keep respawning across the road and pop up their heads in the same place over and over until I moved across the road, presumably hitting some trigger volume.

        Basically, CoD 4 and on relies so much on heavy handed scripting that the player is left out.

        • Mr. Bottomhat says:

          That’s my point. Half-life is heavily scripted and 100% linear yet very fun and use genius map design to get gameplay out of small areas. Plus you hardly ever notice the rails as the rails feel natural. It also trusts the player to find the way and that makes the player feel smart.

        • SuicideKing says:

          Oh yes. I hated CoD:MW’s infinite enemy respawn.

          Get it? Infinity Ward, Respawn Entertainment? I’m so punny!

          • analydilatedcorporatestyle says:

            I’ve only ever played Modern Warefare and I was in the TV Studio level thinking ‘Fuck me this is hard’ I kept running out of ammo, holding station for about 20 mins each time. I then by luck got to the door that stopped the respawning and then it hit me. My FPS gamestyle of sitting back and taking out the enemies before moving on was broken in COD, you had to press on and that is why you are a bullet sponge!

            Shit game!

  39. Chubzdoomer says:

    This review had me nodding more than a dashboard-mounted bobblehead on a rocky road! I don’t know what’s more sad: The fact that developers keep creating campaigns like this, or the fact that there are actually people out there who ENJOY this shit! It drives me nuts. And every year they hype the same garbage up with fancy trailers showing oh-so-obviously scripted, on-rails events and people lap it up as though it’s groundbreaking and exciting. Are most consumers really THAT ignorant?

    Shitty, linear, restrictive campaigns like this are exactly why I’m continuing to do the “If Doom was done today” videos that parody them. I would recommend checking out the latest one, Part 3, as it includes most crappy modern conventions but places it in a familiar Doom setting (modified E1M3, Toxin Refinery) for maximum effect. Link: link to youtube.com

  40. GamesInquirer says:

    I don’t think the problem is the constant moving forward. Plenty great games do that. Top scrolling shmups, side scrolling shmups, beat ’em ups, on-rails lightgun shooters, on-rails not-lightgun shooters, racing games and many more. The problem is that the gameplay on offer here is boring, unexciting, predictable and not fulfilling in any way as it requires no skill even on the higher difficulties which are more about patience, repetition and at random intervals unfair odds with constant grenade spamming in a rain of aimbot powered bullets with pretty much inevitable deaths unless you get lucky.

    So yeah, fault the game for being bad at what it is, not for not being something else, like a free-roaming survival simulator where you can live another life in another world where anything is possible.

    On my modest i7 3770K with 16GB DDR3 and 7970 GPU machine the game run fine maxed except for AA, I think I stuck with FXAA, aliasing on 1080p was quite obvious regardless of setting anyway I’m afraid, such is the reality of busy supposedly realistic scenes. It did not run as good as I’d like, especially considering the underwhelming visuals and certainly not at a constant 60fps, but nothing that actually impacted playability. A few stutters here and there in preparation for the supposedly impressive scripted scenes and such was the worst it got. There weren’t that many AA settings to try either.

    And it’s definitely the level designers who made the corridors. They’re not excused for the boredom somehow because they had to work on a corridor based FPS. There have been great corridor shooters.

  41. strangeloup says:

    I picked up the first Modern Warfare for all of about a fiver recently — on the PS3, seeing as the PC versions are never, ever discounted to a reasonable price — as it’s purported to be the best one, and it’s still a big bag of shit. The only part I vaguely remember was a highly scripted set piece on a boat, which mostly made me think of the tanker section in Metal Gear Solid 2 and how it was a lot better. The rest of the time, until I lost the will to play it anymore, was running around as a selection of personality-free identikit soldiers shooting brown people, or occasionally Russians (it’s usually Russians) and lots of shouting and bombast which may or may not have amounted to a plot at some point.

    Truly, they have mastered the art of polishing a turd. I didn’t bother with the multiplayer; given that the gunplay was so shitty and weak in the campaign, I didn’t anticipate it suddenly turning into a work of gameplay genius.

    • GamesInquirer says:

      No, the best is 2. Modern Warfare is just when they started being like, well, like Ghosts. At the time it just seemed fresh and exciting for some but after constant repetition of the same thing, not so much even for them. Not that previous games weren’t linear mind, but they were good old fashioned arcade fun. Multiplayer took off for being Counter-Strike Lite with xp/unlocks and not having to wait for round’s end to respawn (in the popular modes).

  42. fancynameplease says:

    The images seem really artful, though, in a weird Jenny-Holzer-way.

    • strangeloup says:

      I did get the feeling when playing the first Modern Warfare (which I gave up on) that if it had an ounce of self awareness, it could be an immensely biting critique of the America Fuck Yeah war genre.

      Mostly, though, I just wanted to reply because Jenny Holzer is pretty much my favourite artist.

  43. BooleanBob says:

    The campaign, in main, restrains you to the train.

  44. deejay says:

    Is it true that most people will buy CoD for singleplayer, John? Not to disagree (I don’t know), but I would’ve thought multiplayer would’ve been the main draw. That’s especially as everyone knows the campaigns are usually pap, which offer just a few hours of mindless blood and thunder.

    Perhaps the single player games in the WWII CoDs were able to pull off the style due the real settings – holding Pegasus bridge, the infamous start to Stalingrad with no gun. The public had a thirst for that, following the D-Day antics of MoH and we just wanted more dramatic WWII set pieces. Eventually the game went modern in setting and the hype/overexposure grew with the console success. MW2 dropped the twin bomb of a ludicrous campaign and (critically) the abandonment of PC dedicated servers, and the ill feeling has remained. BO2 tried to introduce some novel features with the single player and improved the online compared to MW2 and 3, but it seems like Ghosts is a step back.

    As some posters have suggested, I don’t know why they don’t bin the single player in this and Battlefield and focus on a quality MP product (and vice versa for single player games). Not many games combine good multi and single player experiences.

  45. quietone says:

    COD, the NASCAR of FPS.

  46. Rastaban says:

    I had next to no problems running this game. The only problem I encountered was when I tried to run Extinction at first but then subsequent attempts were successful. To the author of the article, it could be your PC. Maybe you need to upgrade. I appreciate the points you made in your article but I do think the criticism is a bit harsh. I am one of those people who enjoy CoD: Ghosts. Sure, there could be more to it but overall it’s a great game and well worth the money paid for it.

    I have to say though, this author has a way with words that sometimes makes me laugh.

  47. Rammie says:

    i dunno what system you have that would struggle to play it
    but i have a gtx 580 16gig ram i5 4670 and mine runs smooth with 40 – 119 fps all video options turned on full except v sync is off
    anyway the game is not all bad and i will play till its finished then start again to finish the steam acheivements that i have missed first time round, then carry on with my beloved Mass Effect 3, multiplayer dont interest me one bit

    • Sleepymatt says:

      One might argue that 40-119 fps is hardly smooth….

      • airmikee99 says:

        Jumping between 40 and 119 fps is the very definition of ‘not smooth’.

        edit: For the lulz, I did a Google search on ‘frames per second smooth’ just to see what a series of tubes had to say on the topic. #1 result, Game Front article entitled “Reviewers Say Call of Duty: Ghosts on PS4 Has Frame Rate Issues”.

        • Rammie says:

          it depends on where you are in the game, play it and you will see what i mean, although it did struggle in the factory a bit it went down to 5 fps for a few secs then went back up to 65 fps

  48. RPSRSVP says:

  49. CookPassBabtridge says:

    Now that I have heard John Walker, I will not read John Walker in quite the same way ever again. Fantastically enjoyable video.

    • Michael Fogg says:

      Yes! I always suspected JW of being a grumpy emotionman, but turns out he’s got great talent for improv comedy! More of those mini-let’s plays!

  50. uh20 says:

    “you drilled through the backplate”
    :O :O :O :O :O :O