• James Finney

The 'Black Ops IIII' beta had some issues


Courtesy Treyarch

Staff Writer | Daija Marrow


This past week, Treyarch launched the private beta for the next installment in the “Black Ops” series. Access to the gameplay required a pre-order of “Black Ops IIII” and ended on Aug. 13. This beta consisted of five multiplayer game types: Control, Capture Moshpit, Search and Destroy, Chaos Team Deathmatch and Heist. Within each game type, a flood of features were revealed and tested. Six maps were included in this test, along with 10 specialist types similar to those in “Black Ops III.”


The most noticeable and admirable difference was the removal of jetpack, wall run or thrust jump, which were unpopular mechanics in past franchise games. Another addition, which was taken from “COD: WWII,” was the play of the game that is shown at the end of matches. It is a good touch and incentive on gameplay, presumably catching the most interesting kill streak based on consecutive badges earned between both teams.


It has also been confirmed that “Black Ops IIII” will not have a campaign mode, but will fashion a battle royale mode named "Blackout" that will have a beta release in September.


That aside, the purpose of a beta is to weed out glaring errors and inconsistencies in gameplay and Call of Duty titles are no exception to this.


The first noteworthy problem with “Black Ops IIII” is the inconsistent power of guns. The first couple of assault rifles available between levels 1-10 are too weak and have poor range. This is to be expected at a low level, but considering that the first pistol given when level five is reached can take out an enemy across the map in three shots quicker than a submachine gun after emptying a clip at point blank range poses an issue.


There is also a problem with the first shotgun, the MOG 12, awarded at level seven. This gun has three shells in a round with the fire rate of a sniper rifle and can barely kill an enemy at point blank range after all three shots. The biggest problem with this is that the player needs to be close to the enemy and still can’t achieve a kill with the first shot. It’s ineffective, especially if one happens to be against a level 15 player who doesn’t have their back turned.


The next problem settles on the spawns. Although this is clearly a Treyarch game, the spawn system is reminiscent of “Modern Warfare 2” - repetitive, easily tracked and poorly placed. In smaller maps, such as Hacienda or Seaside, and game types where lives are limited or K/D is on the line, spawn trapping is too easy to do. In larger maps, this inconvenience appears when two enemy players are dropped right next to one another.


Spawn trapping can be limited to small maps and the “Black Ops” series has a good history with avoiding this complication. In their staple map, Nuketown, which is more than likely to be in “Black Ops IIII” despite not being shown off in the beta, a poor spawning system could be a nuisance. For the winning team, it’s a tactic, but for the loser, it's an unfair hole.


The next issues are more preference than a bug, but the capture zones in domination are too small to be as awkwardly placed as they are. A chance encounter with one of those overpowered rifles while trying to capture is nearly a waste of time and destroys K/D. Also, falling off of the maps is too easy.


If wall running is no longer an option and the grappling hook is only available to the Ruin specialist, why are there gaping holes leading to nowhere in the middle of maps?


Any further problem is either minimal or expected, such as, server issues. Being kicked out of the matches were difficulties faced by some player. The above named problems were partially subjective and not experienced or agreed with by all. Seeing as this was a quality assurance test, all of these problems and others unnoticed are likely to be solved.


Overall, the "Black Ops IIII" private beta proved that the upcoming title will be fun and progressive as all Call of Duty titles have a history of achieving. The September "Blackout" beta can also be accessed through preorder and the official release of "Black Ops IIII" is Oct. 12.

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