[ First Impressions Review ] Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

You remember that article I made regarding this latest entry into the Call of Duty franchise and what I think Activision could do to bring the series out of its currently stagnant state? You remember how I sounded cautiously optimistic regarding what the game could be like in order to make it truly revolutionize the genre, for a change? Yeah, well, let’s talk about how Activision completely ignored that concept while also making a totally competent first-person shooter.

Diving straight into the game takes you straight into urban warfare, taking you through an introductory mission to acclimate you to the controls in the midst of combat. Things really haven’t changed all that much when it comes to the actual gameplay but the idea of added mobility through special abilities is definitely a welcome change from the dreadful pace of most rail shooters. All that is more useful in the multiplayer, though, against real enemies, as the AI still feels as if there’s no real formation other than “hide, shoot wildly, hide, walk into bullets, rinse and repeat.” The framing around the level was the same kind of dudebro stuff the series is well known for and after completing the first mission, I kind of realized that this game is really going to be no different than any of the others.

After a lot of fluff that ended up introducing you to Kevin Spacey’s role in the game – which, as usual, he plays as well as he can – you get thrown into… yet another introductory mission, which serves as an exposition to get you introduced into the private military company you’ll be serving with and to refine the skills you learned in the previous mission. It feels really badly put together and honestly could have been done away with by turning it into a cutscene, or something. It felt incredibly boring and, altogether, a waste of time.

Your next mission finally stops holding your hand but the control reminders are still always flashing in your face, reminding you of the stuff that you’ve had ground into your skull for the last two missions. It’s still very basic stuff. Activision had a really big chance, here, to drop a bomb, so to speak, on the first-person shooter genre and it just seems to be more of the same kind of padded… crap.

However, though, if you’ve really enjoyed the series in the past, you’ll find that there’s still more to love, with this game. Advanced Warfare flexes its muscles really well and does what it has always done without really missing a beat. My qualms with this game and, for all intents and purposes, this franchise, are not based in the fact that I think they’re all bad games; no, rather, I feel my issue with everything is that the formula that they’ve been standing by for so long has been tiring and grating on the nerves, kind of like that song you used to like on the radio before the radio stations played it straight to hell.

After playing this game for a while, I can say that this game gets a grand old “meh” from me. It doesn’t really do anything new other than star Kevin Spacey – which… shamefully… I will be playing just to see what his role ends up developing into…


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