Call of Duty is seeing some major improvements and additions in Black Ops 2′s multiplayer – more that you might of initially expected.
We’ve already learned about some of the initial Black Ops 2 multiplayer features back in September, including Pick 10, scorestreaks and wildcards etc., but after having recently visited the Treyarch Studios down in Santa Monica LA, MP1st was fortunate enough to preview a slew of brand new multiplayer features and content that have yet to be revealed.
Though unable to attend the event in person, game design director David Vonderhaar put together an informative presentation detailing some the exciting new multiplayer goodness making its way to Black Ops 2 this November 13.
At launch, three modes will be playable with up to three different teams within the regular assortment of playlists. These three teams can be made up of three to four players. Treyarch calls these “3×3′s” and “3X4′s.” Multi-team game modes include:
Party Games essentially replaces Wager Matches from the original Black Ops. However, players will now be able to earn XP and rank up in the regular progression. Game types include:
Sticks and Stones (Yes, the crossbow and ballistic knife are returning.)
One in the Chamber
Combat Training is now integrated into the main game and will include three different modes at launch.
Bootcamp – In Bootcamp, players can rank up from level 1 to level 10 while gaining full experience. This playlist is solely made up of the Team Deathmatch game mode and pits one team of humans and bots against another team of human and bots. This eases the level of expectation placed on someone who may be new to the game.
Objective – Here, players can rank past level 10, but will not earn the full amount of XP. Once again, two teams made up of both humans and bots are pitted against each other in various objective-based game modes.
Bot Stom – No XP is earned in Bot Storm. Quite simply, a team of humans is pitted agains a team of bots – great for practice, map knowledge, and nailing down the basics of Call of Duty.
All game modes are customizable in Black Ops 2. Bots can be added to almost all game modes if a team needs filling out, for example. Players will also have the power to restrict content like certain attachments, perks and equipment. Interestingly, players will also be able to redesign the Pick 10 system to either a Pick 3 to Pick 17 system and anything in between. This can make for some extremely skill-based matches when weapons, perks and equipment are limited to only three slots. A slew of competitive settings and options have also been thrown in, including how FFA, TDM and CTS are scored, the ability to turn off 3rd person spectating, the ability to disable the announcer and a whole lot more.
Challenges reward players for almost anything and everything – ranging from simple tasks to more difficult feats. Completing challenges is ‘the’ way to unlock cosmetic content for your character which can be shared throughout all aspects of the multiplayer. These challenges, numbering in the thousands, also reward players with XP in order to level up even faster.
Every weapon in the game, including atypical weapons like launchers, knives and assault shields all have challenges for camoflage patterns. Once these base camos are unlocked for a weapon, a whole new set of challenges are unlocked to complete for special camos, including some interesting hidden ones.
These challenges also extend to optic reticles. There are a total of eight unique reticles for each optic that are all unique to that optic which can all help your aim and precision. Just for the lol’s, Treyarch has also thrown in a number of comical shapes, including a mustache, aka “The Steve,” as well as the “EOTech Zombie Stopper.”
In-game, these rewards show up as a neatly presented icon in the top center of the screen when earned and are reviewable in the after-action report.
Every Player Card in Black Ops 2 is made up of these elements: a background, a clan tag, a player’s matchmaking level and a player’s current League Play rank.
In the emblem editor, players will have up to 32 layers to work with. Objects can be flipped, moved, rotated, scaled and copied and pasted from one layer to another. The choice of colors has been improved and RGB color mixing can also be tweaked. The emblem editor now also supports transparency.
Should you choose not to create your own emblem, default emblems will also be provided. For those willing to get creative, more complex shapes will become available upon completing specific challenges. When it comes to backgrounds, over 150 are selectable, not all of which are simple rectangular shapes.
The theater mode in Black Ops 2 is back and has seen some major improvements while keeping all the same tools, including the dolly cam, from previous Call of Duty’s. The new Social Features allow players to bookmark gameplays so that they can be revisited, meaning it’s now much easier to go back and search for your favorite moments after a plentiful night of games. The Meta Data has been expanded to include score, captures and defends while the robust Community Filter can help sort videos to a player’s preference. Up and down-voting is now also included for both films and screenshots.
An extremely powerful new feature, the Highlight Reel, allows players to create a film with the simple touch of a button. Simply load a game in the theater, select ‘Hightlight Reel,’ and “bam,” the game instantly creates your very own montage of your most excellent moments. Settings can be customized, however, to expand or simplify the contents of your film. Further editing can be done once completed as well.
As previously mentioned, players can also CoDCast previously recorded games in order to either get some practice in, or create some nifty commentaries. Parties can now head into theater mode and watch videos together while having the ability to watch any player from a first-person perspective.
Treyarch has also doubled the amount of clips or segments that can be put together in one video – up to 20 in total. Additionally, clips can now be merged into each other, creating one big clip. The brand new Attach to Object feature, a brilliant addition, will let players produce some really fancy shots. By entering free-roam, objects that are selectable will turn green. When selected, the camera will simply follow that object as it moves throughout the gameplay. Objects can range from various scorestreaks all the way down to the rocket that is launched out of an RPG. This means you can now follow said rocket in slow-mo as it plows into your enemies face.
What everyone’s been waiting for.
Treyarch is handling prestige very differently in Black Ops 2. Once again, assumptions are being challenged. No longer is Prestige a “restart” as it was in previous Call of Duty titles. This time around, weapon experience and earned attachments are are carried over, as are all challenges.
Black Ops 2 is meant to be played all the way to prestige 10. Upon prestige-ing, tokens are rewarded to the player which can then be used to unlock what ever item you want forever, including items that you have yet to reach the required level for. On top of these tokens, an additional reward can be selected. These rewards include:
New create a class slot – Up to 5 extra slots.
Stats Reset – This is a complete wipe of all stats and unlocks. This is essentially like buying the game new.
Refund – This gives back all unlock tokens a player has spent so far that prestige level. This basically allows players to re-roll or re-spec their character.
Only at prestige 10 is absolutely everything unlocked for the player. It seems Treyarch really wants players to see it through to the end in Black Ops 2 in order to achieve 100% of the benefits.
Ambitious, indeed, is Call of Duty: Black Ops 2′s multiplayer, but that’s not even the half of it. There’s still Zombies. Treyarch is holding nothing back this year and is sure to prove that Call of Duty’s still got the magic. Stay tuned for more undead info, as well as our very own thoughts and impressions of the multiplayer gameplay.