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Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 – Review

“Kill Confirmed”

Another year, another Call of Duty. The past couple of years have been rough on the franchise to establish solid title on the new generation of consoles. Despite the great campaign and new addition of Extinction mode,  Call of duty: Ghosts flopped with its multiplayer and hurt its reputation with the Next-Gen gamers. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare brought some decent multiplayer, which was well received by the majority of the Next-Gen community, but ultimately made its biggest impact on the previous gen consoles. Many gamers were looking to Treyarch to design a superior Call of Duty experience for the Next Generation, and I can say that in fact they have. Not only is Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 (CODBO3) great, its the best in the Call of Duty installment franchise.

The amount of content in CODBO3 is ridiculous compared to previous titles in the franchise. There are four main game modes: Campaign, Multiplayer, Zombies, and Nightmares (only available once the campaign has been completed). If that wasn’t enough there’s an additional mini game mode, which I believe could have been sold as an indie game for $15, is a sequel to the original Black Ops easter egg called Dead Ops Arcade 2. The amount of content was a much welcomed surprise and felt almost like Trayarch was apologizing for the past two years of dull games, but also as if they were saying “Yes, we are best developer in the series”.

If you loved the first two campaigns in the Black Ops series, you will love this one as well. For the first time ever the character you portray is you, the player. When you initiate the start you have a simple character creation menu with different face types, in which for the first time you have the ability to play as a female protagonist. The dialog, much like the mass effect series, has been double recorded to fit the gender of choice. It was a much welcomed addition that made the experience seem more open to who I wanted to be. Another nice welcomed feature was the addition to the progression system of the campaign. You earn XP in each mission based on the difficulty of choice, and throughout the campaign you use your unlock keys to buy new Mods, on 1 of 3 Augmentation paths that you choose, and weapons. The campaign is action packed with various human and AI droid enemies that keeps you on the edge the whole time. Story plays a big role in this as you are in search for your comrades who you believe have turned their backs on your country. There’s many dark secrets to find, and twist to keep you guessing maybe a little too much. One thing of advice while playing is to pay very close attention to what is going on, otherwise you may get confused and lost. I enjoyed the story very much, but I know there have been others who were left with many more questions than answers.

Zombies are back again and though Treyarch is the creator of the fan favorite mode it misses the mark. I thought that Advanced Warfares Zombie mode was the best in the series and I feel like Treyarch tried to do too much with it. Going with a much more cinematic approach which made no sense, and a supernatural counter part to boot with your character, the Zombies just seem so mediocre this year. While the gameplay is still very solid and the base objective is the same, the map layout isn’t what you would come to expect out of Treyarch. Its still a very fun endeavor with friends, but after the remarkable zombies in AW, I was left disappointed.

Nightmares mode was the big surprise for this game. Once you complete the campaign, you unlock this mode and aside from multiplayer, this will be what keeps me coming back to Black ops 3. Nightmares is a new story and reimagining of key campaign level in which, instead of fighting soldiers and droids, all the enemies are now zombies giving us the first full length zombie campaign in COD. It is incredibly fun and even if you aren’t too impressed with the campaign, it gives you a reason to actually finish it.
Lets be honest here, the majority of people who purchase this game got it for the multiplayer. Again as I said earlier, Treyarch really brought the guns out and delivered in every aspect. Multiplayer is the same as it always has been with only One major change in adding Specialist classes. Specialist classes you unlock with keys you earn from leveling up and give you your special kill ability.  Some have more advantages over others, but none made me feel like I couldn’t win against them. Other than that its a very fluid experience. Great weapon choices, and fantastic map design make this years COD the best since Modern Warfare 3.


Here is where I have my complaints. The gameplay runs a smooth 60fps while your in control no matter what mode your on. When you go to a on rail cut scene in the campaign though you immediately drop to sub 30fps. It was very annoying playing on my Xbox One, but was also an issue on the PS4 as well. If you have a PC that can handle it well, I suggest for campaign only players to buy it there.  Its no surprise that with poor performance that the campaign was cut from the Xbox 360 and Ps3 versions, especially when it runs so poorly on the Xbox one and ps4.


As expected from the leading developers at Activision, Sound quality is a great as its ever been. Whether your listening to dialog and environments in campaign, or the footsteps behind you in the multiplayer, its a soothing experience with clear effects to immerse yourself in the experience.


After much disappointment from the Next Generation entries of COD, Treyarch has really sent us a polished experience with loads of content. If you enjoyed COD in the past, you need to get this one. Behind some framerate difficulties is still an amazing game and I have had the most fun I have ever had in an Call of Duty game.

Style – Single/Multiplayer, FPS

Publisher – Treyarch

Developer – Activision

Release – November 6, 2015



  • 4.5 – Gameplay
  • 3.5 – Graphics
  • 4.5  – Sound
  • 5.0 – Entertainment
  • 5.0 – Replay Value
Call of Duty Black Ops 3
  • Brandin Shafer

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