With the release of each new Call of Duty there are typically three key moments on the Activision timeline. The first is, of course, the release of the actual game, where hundreds of thousands gamers pore over every inch of the newest iteration. Second comes the sales numbers reveal, which isn’t very exciting, mind you, but is a key indicator of Call of Duty‘s success. And finally, a few months later we reach the release of the first map pack, an event geared at rejuvenating gamers’ interest in the franchise.
Earlier today, we hit that all-important third milestone with the release of Onslaught, the first map pack for Call of Duty: Ghosts. Those who have been keeping watch know all that Onslaught has to offer, but they have only seen short glimpses or fixed-perspective screenshots of the new multiplayer maps.
To help players get a better sense of each new map included with Call of Duty: Ghosts‘ first pack, we have put together a series of video walkthroughs. Moreover, these videos should help gamers determine whether the map pack is worth the $15 price tag, or show PlayStation and PC gamers what they have to look forward to in a month.
So, without further ado, here’s the first map.
Containment is a medium-sized map set within a war torn Mexican village. It offers a decent amount of verticality (tops of buildings, tunnels), but overall it’s pretty straightforward. The beige color palette does leave a lot to be desired, but the layout is interesting enough to keep players always on their toes.
Bayview is the smallest map in the pack, but it offers plenty of places for players to take cover. A key focal point of the map is its trolley line, which can ferry players across half the map, and even provides a decent amount of cover. The bay-themed design, and the quality touches give Bayview a nice personality, and the layout makes sure a shootout is never far away.
A re-skin of the Modern Warfare 2 map Scrapyard, Ignition offers players familiar terrain albeit in a different form. Rather than an airplane graveyard, Ignition is set on a rundown Nasa facility that, strangely, still features some working tech. The ignition test is certainly a highlight of the map, and can provide a strategic advantage when taking on groups of enemies, but the real showpiece of the map is the exploding shuttle launch. Though it may be a little in poor taste the way Ignition uses the shuttle crash to change up the landscape is clever, and it’s without a doubt a “wow” moment.
Finally, there is Fog, which is set on a fog covered swamp and campsite. While many of the base maps in Call of Duty: Ghosts fail to deliver any atmosphere, Fog has it in spades. Even without the fact that gamers can turn into Michael Myers and hunt down enemies, Fog perfectly captures that horror movie aesthetic. It’s easily the best map in the pack, and may be one of the best Call of Duty has offered in a while.
Of course, alongside the four new maps and new weapon is a new campaign for Ghosts‘ Extinction mode called Nightfall: Episode 1. From what we’ve played of it, Nightfall certainly seems like a decent addition to Extinction, giving players a new reason to come back to the mode. But, those who weren’t terribly excited by Ghosts‘ riff on Zombies won’t necessarily find too much to enjoy with Nightfall. It’s really just more content for the fans.
Overall, Onslaught hits the same notes we’ve seen rung before, nothing more and nothing less. The four new maps are varied enough to justify the price tag, but they don’t evolve or change the core multiplayer experience in any appreciable way. The inclusion of Michael Myers as a care package unlock is certainly novel, but it feels more like a one trick pony than anything else. If seeing these maps up close didn’t do anything for you, then a live match on them likely won’t change your mind either. Fog is a great addition to the library, but as far as Call of Duty map packs go, this is one of the more run-of-the-mill offerings.
Call of Duty: Ghosts – Onslaught is available now for Xbox 360 and Xbox One.
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