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I have to start this off with saying, while I like the whole Call of Duty series, I’m really tired of playing through history, and I would much rather play in modern times with today’s modern technology and weapons, yes the games are great, they’re fun but I think the theme is a bit played out now…

Call of Duty World at War is yet another entry into the World War II gaming genre, is it a welcome addition? COD:WaW is based off the COD4 engine, so it’s much more advanced than the others in the series, and it offers several new things to gameplay as well. Overall gameplay is fun, it’s exciting, and the graphics are excellent, and of course we’ve got the awesome Nazi Zombie mode at the end of the game.

COD:WaW is broken into sections where you play a different character, the story unfolds as you go through the missions until you win WWII, it’s a first person reenactment of the final battles of the war from a grunts perspective basically.

We’ll start off with Boxshots:

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Before we get into this, I wanted to say I really enjoyed the loading sections, they were interesting with actual pictures and video footage from WWII, it made sitting through the loads between levels a bit more bearable.

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Specifications:
Call of Duty: World at War

Call of Duty: World at War completely changes the rules of engagement by redefining WWII gaming and thrusting players into the final tension-filled, unforgiving battles against a new ferocious enemy in the most dangerous and suspenseful action ever seen in WWII.

Powered by Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare technology, Call of Duty: World at War brings an uncensored edge to combat, as soldiers face the most harrowing and climatic European and Pacific battles in which an enemy, who knows no surrender and no retreat, will fight to the last breath, unleashing an arsenal of lethal surprising tactics. Peril and danger lurk throughout the battlefield as players combat the unknown risk of the new chaos of battle.

From the remains of Russia and the ruins of Berlin, to the beach and jungles of the deadly Pacific Theater, the volatile action takes on added depth as players employ new features that previously were only-available in multiplayer, including perks, rankings and online stats in up-to full four-player cooperative gameplay. New infantry and vehicle-based weapons, like the potent flamethrower, bring the battlefield ablaze.

Platforms: PC, Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Playstation 2, Wii and NDS
Genre:    First Person Shooter
Studio:   
Treyarch

 


With most of the COD franchise the game is set in WWII, I’ve already mentioned it and many others have as well that it’s getting a bit old playing the same time in history over and over again, but Treyarch seems to freshen things up a bit with this latest installment. It’s still familiar, but things look much better due to the improved graphics and the game plays better because of the improved gameplay mechanics. The weapons aren’t really new, but this time around you get the added thrill of roasting people with a flamethrower or taking them out with a bayonet for some up close and personal killing.

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One excellent addition to the single player campaign is the ability to play it with friends, sort of a mini multiplayer mode, this does add a new dimension to gameplay and overall enjoyment.

I’ve played the game through once and thoroughly enjoyed it, it seemed a bit longer that COD4, which is  a good thing as no one likes short games. COD:WaW feels like more games than one really while you’re playing because as you switch players, the weapons, vehicles and settings are different all around.

The weapons in the game are standard stuff of the time period, you’ll run across pistols, rifles, machine guns, grenades and such, all of the weapons seem to react as they should, no complaints there really.

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Most of the game is great in terms of gameplay and graphics, the first person sections, playing as a person, work well,  there is a section you drive a tank around, and it feels as though it was thrown in to break up the monotony of the game, it feels clumsily thrown together with the tank a bit difficult to drive and maneuver, it’s a section that is fairly hard even on easy and one that I would not like to repeat if need be. Normally I like driving a tank, what guy wouldn’t right, but it just doesn’t work well at all here. The other main vehicle section is a gunner on a plane, that one works well though, there’s more about that below.

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COD:WaW is a violent and gruesome game that captures the way the war was in a way that I haven’t really seen in a video game, Treyarch has done a great job of capturing the real feeling a war. Dare I say it, but the beach landing section reminded me of Saving Private Ryan, just not quite as bad, but very similar.

The game tries to be serious with what’s at stake, winning World War II, and it does a good job of making you feel like you’re actually part of the action and doing your part for the war effort. The game does pull you into it, you want to know what’s going to happen, of course you could pick up a history book but that wouldn’t be as much fun. There are many, many battles in World War II that could have been used for a video game, I do like the idea that this is basically the end of the war, could it also signify an end to games set in this era?

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Don’t get me wrong about this game, as a whole it is nice to look at and fun to play, you don’t need a uber-powerful system to play it either for it to still look good. Call of Duty World at War is a game that very much resembles it’s ‘ancestors’ in the series, only a whole lot better looking really. I’ve got all of the series and expansions as need be as well, but my favorite genre is first person shooters so I try not to miss many of them really.

As a side note I’ve always wanted to play the side of the enemy in games like this, kind of an alternate reality type of thing, might make for a great game. I don’t necessarily mean WWII either, but other games in general, they’re all hero games, when do we get to play the bad guy?

Probably my most favorite mission is one where you’re a gunner in an airplane, you start off shooting down plans, then you get to sink some boats and then you go and rescue sailors who were attacked by the Japanese. The graphics in this mission, as with all of them are excellent, and it’s very fast paced with tons of action, and you get to change gunnery positions depending on where the enemy is.

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Here’s a video of the mission, about 2 minutes of it, the video is downscaled a bit to standard resolution as the original was 4 gigs…

To end this I’ve got to mention the bonus after completing the game ‘Nazi Zombies’, I’ll admit it, I like Zombies and I really like to kill them. The basis here in this game is to survive as long as you can, you can do this single player or with buddies online. It’s reminiscent of Living Dead movies where you’re trapped and defending a position. You’re in a building you need to defend, you get points for killing zombies which you can use to buy weapons or rebuild the barriers on the windows and doors to slow the zombies down. There is also special box that gives you a random weapon, one of which is a laser pistol similar to something Rocket Ranger might carry in his adventures. So here’s a bunch of screenshots and a video as well for you of all the zombie killing fun:

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Here’s the video with the laser gun, and yeah I used a cheater for this part, it actually made it more fun!


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Conclusion:
Call of Duty World at War is an excellent game overall, it’s got everything that any gamer would want in a game of this type, blood, gore, violence, bad language and so much more. Treyarch does a great job utilizing the COD4 engine for this game, and the added co-op mode is a nice bonus, as is the Nazi Zombies at the end of the game.

When it’s all said and done though, it’s still back to WWII, and personally, I’m getting tired of the theme, I want something set in the here and now or maybe in the past few years…

Pros:
ZOMBIES!
Good storyline
Great graphics
Bloody and gory

Cons:
Back to WWII yet again

Grades:  
Overall score-8-10
Design score-8-10
Performance score-8-10