Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is priming for launch to early adopters in a few days and looks to add extra dimensions to one of the most popular shooting series of all time. The basic gameplay, fundamentally the same in every entry since the first Modern Warfare, is the target of Sledgehammer Games in their hope to offer something new that yearly adopters have yet to see in the military shooter series. Multiplayer gameplay has already been detailed for fans, showing off new modes, customization and available perks while the single-player experience revolves around the private army of the Atlas Corporation.
Back at Gamescom, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare took the stage solo in front of a live crowd where quite a few details were unveiled for the first time. Basic movements for soldiers, in this iteration, have followed many other shooters into a more mobile realm. The addition of augmentation suits, as well as the opened level design, looks to take away from the twitch-reliant corridor shooting with the ability to leap buildings, dodge in mid-air, slide and perform a slam move. All of this surrounds an upgradable set of components to the suit that can add shields, cloaking, grenade launchers and more to the exo-skeletal enhancements. Balance is maintained between one array of powers and another through battery energy, which is needed in various amounts to power the abilities. This customization spreads to visual upgrades with the three-dimensional lobbies allowing for others to see the customized parts on a specific soldier’s suit, including paint jobs, face and outfit variations.
Multiplayer maps are also intentionally different in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare with many of the roofs taken off in favor of open, changing experiences, priming for a different experience at launch. Besides the enhanced mobility, there are “dynamic” events that change the playing field in the same vein as Battlefield 4. One of their touted examples was on the map Defender when a tidal wave crashes inland, taking out a beach area and claiming the life of any soldier caught in the way. Among the twelve game modes released at launch, there are two making their debut in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare called Uplink, which deals with carrying a drone from point-A to point-B, and Momentum.
The single-player campaign in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, filled with celebrity voices and Kevin Spacey through motion capture technology, runs directly into conflict with Atlas’ private, mercenary-for-hire army. The main antagonist seems to be one of these mercenaries that has gone rogue in the year 2054, taking some essential technology and resources with them. This story, according to Sledgehammer’s own Glen Schofield, took two-and-a-half years to pen out completely, pointing to this one being revised and cared about by this developer.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is primed for release to pre-order holders Nov. 3, a day earlier than the regular release day: a first for the gaming industry. There was also a timely leak that revealed a zombie mode that originated in Call of Duty: World at War and will be a part of the experience. Overall, these inclusions have not done much to increase pre-orders for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare as reservations are down, as of the beginning of Oct., by half from previous iteration Ghosts, signaling to some that this franchise is losing popularity due to one reason or another. Sledgehammer Games, however, is hoping that this revitalization of the formula will lead to one in sales as well.
By Myles Gann