Dead

When there is no more room in hell, the dead will consume your free time. The Call of Duty franchise is back with another entry with Black Ops 4. This one skipped the single-player campaign completely, instead focusing on the cornucopia of entertaining multiplayer modes. One of them, of course, being the staple that is Call of Duty: Zombies.

In the latest offering, the team over at Treyarch has kept the essentials in place, with what we have come to know and love about Zombies, and added a full-on bit of the fantastically bonkers to keep things interesting and replayability a constant high.

Black Ops 4: Zombies is broken into three different maps and respective stories with their own set of characters. Voyage of Despair, Blood of the Dead and IX. Each map comes with new story lines, hidden challenges and (of course) a crap-ton of zombies.

Much like in previous COD: Zombies, this one has hidden challenges that if unlocked reveal cut-scenes that make up the real hamburger of the narrative. Sure, you can run and gun and dominate wave after wave, but if you want to reveal actual plotlines, searching for these challenges is really beneficial.

Your old buddy, classic survival mode is here and ready to play, but this time he brought some friends. A mode called ‘Rush’ that feels a lot more like an arena shooter is a blast. It focuses in on a kinetic based score. Weapons won’t cost you anything in Rush but getting hurt by zombies will bring your score down. It takes a little getting used to in comparison with the longer threaded classic mode, but it’s a worthwhile looksee, for sure.

Voyage of Despair transports you and your team aboard The Titanic, at the ill-fated moment it collides with the lone iceberg, in order to investigate some big occult stirrings. You start on the deck and have to battle your way from galley to engine rooms. This map in particular is very tight, especially when facing the hordes. Hallways become death traps or strategic bottle neck opportunities. It’s gonna be all in how you and your play it.

IX is the most bonkers of the map offerings. This one takes you and your team to a Greek gladiator arena where you are pitted against zombies, giant possessed tigers and hulking armored Spartans. This map allows for a little more wiggle room in terms of slipping your enemies, but forces you to quickly get used to winding catacombs and twisting pathways. Gathering your bearings early is your best friend on this map.

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The classic updated stylings of Blood of the Dead, is where I found myself putting in the most time. This combines a nice amount of ancillary obstacles into the mix of the chaotic, ubiquitous zombie action. Having a WWII crew back, up against Nazi zombies is satisfying too. Nazi zombies was the first foray into this territory and it’s been the proper amount of time between then and now to make this return feel really special.

Elixirs are fun to experiment with in this entry. Each of these do a magnitude of different things to assist you in the onslaught. These are all trial and error but when combined with the right loadout are all out game-changers. The addition of the laboratory, where you can create rare concoctions, is nice and adds weight to the overall atomic age B-movie feel.

This COD Zombies goes full ham in terms of customization. This one allows for customization in every single aspect that you can think of, from loadout to specialized power-ups and everything in between, matches can be fully decked out to suit an infinite number of play styles.

Every bit of controls that you had in previous COD Zombies is still present here, and that’s to say everything is absolutely fluid, responsive and satisfying. Treyarch, knows that its control scheme freaking works and works well, and it’s something that they didn’t change. Thank heavenly zombie!

The bonkers approach to the maps is absolutely great, and one that doesn’t take itself seriously. This entry is totally about two things. One: The fans and, Two: The fun. It’s an addictive experience that doesn’t rely on grinding so much as it does its ability to be purely a blast. The variety of storylines, characters and modes make this one of the best out of the COD: Zombies entries, and is one I will keep going back to for constant zombie-slaying team-based fun.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 is out now.

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