Monday, May 22, 2023


Hello and welcome back to Ai Cave. As I told you in my “Crisis” video I want to try to do something different on my Channel. So here it is, let’s call it an experiment: this is my review of Call of Duty Black Ops 4. Please, watch the entire video and let me know in the comments below what you think I should do differently and where I can improve. Oh and thank you for all the warm comments and support. And now let’s get into the review.

​Black Ops 4 is one hundred percent the result of a poll, a survey, one which Activision has been secretly conducting among fans of the series for the last few years. It is because of this very nature of the game, that wall running and double jumping, for example, has been removed — the reviews of WWII proved that returning to a ‘boots on the ground’ style of play is much more enticing than jetpack abilities. By the same token, the World War II setting in 2017 did not work well either, so the series flew back to the future. Same with the single-player campaign, by the way, which was removed for the same reason – nobody really played it. Recent beta tests and reactions further showed the developers that removing this feature created no displeasure, but the catch is: not everyone noticed it was missing. I will talk about this further in another video.


For the most part, you can forget that the Beta ‘testing’ even happened at all. The release of the game is only a few months away and the thought of any serious changes or reworks to the gameplay being made to the game at this point is laughable. Since they began to carry out such tests, I have not missed a single one – and I am happy to report that for the most part it, the game gave was just about ready. They can always reduce the damage of the machine guns and  increase the reload time of some semi-auto weapons but these changes are trivial and are usually fixed in patches, not during the tests. Betas are often run to debug the network code, and so far, this has been something EVERY Call of Duty game has struggled during these tests, sometimes even the first few days after the release. So the changes, if any are made, will be connected to game balance, something Treyarch is looking at very seriously this time. It’s as if they are trying to make Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 an ultra-hardcore e-sports title, something that, of course, no one asked for.


​The most striking gameplay change is that first aid kits are endless but with a cooldown. This also means that health does not regenerate itself and after each encounter with an enemy, if you manage to survive, you need not only to change the clip but also to inject a syringe – not only that but the latter is more important than the first. This dramatically affects the gameplay – longer times to kill create room for tactics and strategy which fit well in other games but have little place in a traditional Call of Duty. This is a series that was never about planned engagements and any drastic changes during encounters. Attacking to take away half of the enemy’s health then flanking from the other side to finish is not the kind of gameplay Call of Duty fans are looking for but one that they will have to learn to like if they are to enjoy this year’s release.

The combat isn’t the only thing affected by the new medical kits, however. When combined with the lack of jetpacks, the lack of automatic HP recovery, causes Black Ops 4 to sometimes sags noticeably – let me explain: So, you appeared at the respawn point and out of habit started to run forward, but met an enemy, fired at him, then retreated back to receive a medical treatment. This seems like a reasonable thing to do when you’re hurt, run away from combat right? Except it’s not because you die anyway, shot in the back by the player that spawned after you – Huh, I guess in a way, everything is as before.


​This seems to contradict the gameplay encouraged by the long times to kill as it limits your use tactics anyway. As a result, the gameplay does not get deeper, it’s still a short race to the finish, but now Treyarch has added extra hurdles for players to stumble over. This is, for obvious reasons, almost unnoticeable in the new modes, where it is necessary to hold two territories, or in the “bomb”, but deathmatch is just not fun anymore.
Meanwhile, it’s important for Call of Duty to be fun to play. On top of that, the developers of Black Ops 4 also reduced the use of grenades for the sake of balance. Grenades! That means you will not be allowed to take multiple frag grenades after reaching level five when you unlock the ability to create a class. Instead, you may have to choose a character with a special ability (for example, with Battery‘s cluster grenade) or grind (for a long time), while you unlock the Molotov cocktail, frag or flash grenades. 

Class configuration is still based on a pick-10 system. You get ten slots per class where you can put anything you want – a rifle with lots of attachments and three perks or an empty gun and six passive abilities. Everything else is the same as before, except that for the first time since Modern Warfare 3 shotguns – hurray! – are transferred back to secondary weapons. Hello to fast classes with submachine guns, shotguns, and perks granting complete invisibility from everything that flies and hurts the characters from the air.


Speaking of characters. Everyone has an ability with a small cooldown and an ultimate that you need to score points for by killing, helping allies and so on. The first ability is usually something not very serious like a cluster grenade, claymore or ammo box but the second is where the fun begins — the ‘fun’ which is so lacking in Black Ops 4 yet also the same ‘fun’ which breaks all „cybersport“ balance.
Ruin can still jump into the crowd of enemies and smash them all with a crushing wave from the landing, Tork and Ajax use powerful shields, which cannot be shot through and Recon wears special glasses that highlights all enemies in red silhouettes for both himself and his allies – yes, it is a legitimate wallhack. The Ultimate abilities can be activated once or twice per match – which just so happens to be enough to ruin the balance of the game but not quite enough for any ‘serious’ fun.


In general, Black Ops 4 looks like a low-key version of Black Ops 3, with classic gameplay, a tactical approach to combat and reworked character abilities. But it feels like the third Black Ops does not need this low-key version, the game from 2015 is still great and compared to BO4, it looks more appealing to the average COD fan than ever before. That being said, the Fourth one still has two advantages in the form of the “battle royale” and zombies modes, the latter of which Treyarch historically does an amazing job on. 

Thank You for watching, I really hope you enjoyed the video and if did let me know by pressing that like button. If not, at least let me know your thoughts in the comments. Other than that, don’t forget to subscribe and check out some of our other videos. Until next time.

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