A first-person shooter video game set in the near future
Windows 7 / Windows 8.1 / Windows 8
Call of Duty: Ghosts is a first person shooter available on the Xbox 360, the Xbox One, the PlayStation 3 and the PlayStation 4. It makes some definite improvements on the famous franchise, but it also takes a few steps back in some areas. Those expecting a shooter experience similar to previous COD games will get what they are expecting. Those who are hoping for a refreshingly new take on the experience will probably be disappointed.
The single player experience has historically been a feature that consistently took a back seat on COD games. Most players will probably still consider the campaign too easy, but it has been crafted with slightly more care than in previous titles. The story line is interesting, and players will likely care about the characters a little bit more because of how their relationships and personalities are displayed, but the story still sometimes gets lost in the action. Game situations are also fresher in Ghosts than in previous titles. Instead of blasting through endless hordes of enemy soldiers, players will rappel from rooftops, battle sharks and even engage in a short zero-g space shootout.
One definite improvement in Ghosts is the complexity of the player creation experience. Borrowing from other titles, Ghosts has given an unprecedented level of customization to a soldier's appearance and load-out. This customization is supported by a better overall balance to the weapons in the game. Unlike in previous titles that greatly favored SMG weapons, all weapons are more viable in Ghosts. SMGs have reduced damage, and sniping weapons have features that prevent fast-scope sniping. The greater openness of maps also encourages the use of more ranged weapons.
Changes to maps have both a positive and negative effect on the game. The open maps are more tactical and encourage team play, but unfortunately a reliable team is often hard to come by for anyone outside of a large clan. The lone wolf experience that is traditional of the series is boring on a large map because a player can go a long time without action. The limit of 12 players instead of 18 on the current-generation consoles also adds to the problems with larger maps.
Several new and interesting cooperative game types have also emerged, giving players a horde mode experience similar to Gears of War against AI that is acceptably intelligent.
Graphics and Experience
Overall, Ghosts is a slight visual improvement from previous titles on the current consoles and a rather significant improvement in visual eye candy on next gen. As a cross-generation game, it does not quite match the stunning performances of those games designed purely for next gen systems, but it does an overall good job of delivering the action sequences players are expecting with plenty of particle effects and acceptable physics. The developers have been very careful to ensure that the game consistently delivers at 60 FPS in almost all cases.
Amazing customization options
Overall improvements to weapon balance
Great new cooperative play options
Delivers a consistent experience
Larger maps not always appropriate
Does not make any serious improvements to gameplay
Story still gets lost in the action