I consider myself quite the all-rounder when it comes to playing games. I've sampled a little bit of what sometimes feels like every game ever made during my five-squared years on this earth. And yet somehow, inconceivably, before last year's Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare I'd never played a CoD game before. I've no idea how it happened (or didn't happen), but it did (or didn't).
Then, as if to make up for all that lost time, the CoD Gods dropped Call Of Duty: Warzone on me a scant few months later. And in a twist of irony, I've played very few games since.
Now, if there were such things as omniscient CoD Gods leering down upon me and plotting how best to reel me into their millions-strong collection of players, then I'd have to applaud their patience and their timing. They waited for the explosion of the battle royale genre and its subsequent dominion over all my free time, through the medium of first Plunkbat, then Fortnite, Danger Zone, Apex Legends, and even ZombsRoyale. They let me gradually acclimate to this infernally fun genre. They waited for me to become entitled, and start wishing for an even better battle royale experience - one which injected new life into the now-familiar formula of "drop down on map, loot up, shoot, kill, win/die, rinse, repeat". And then, just as Apex Legends started to loosen its grip on me, the CoD Gods declared it time to strike.
Call Of Duty: Warzone is as fun and satisfying as its download times are slow. It's as packed with innovations as it is cluttered with weapon skin unlocks. And its gunplay is as solid as its gun stats are misleading. Somehow, they managed to combine all the best features of the previous battle royales I'd played: the freedom of movement and communication of Apex Legends; the low time-to-kill of Danger Zone and PUBG; and the ever-evolving meta of Fortnite. And then they slapped on several amazing new ideas, like the Gulag which offers you a chance to fight your way back into the game after death, and the lack of any real inventory or hotbar that you have to keep organised.
But what really keeps me coming back to Warzone is the gunplay. It's simply the best, most satisfying gunplay I've ever played in any game, and the immense potential for customisation for every weapon with dozens of attachments to mix and match means that the playerbase is constantly discovering new loadouts and setups which shift the meta overnight. Everything about Warzone is exciting.
Apart from those download times. Seriously, a 90 gigabyte update? The CoD Gods be cruel.