After the excellent post-launch debut marked by Operation Zero Assoluto, Treyarch has recently made available for the multiplatform public the second season of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 . Operation Shot Perfect includes an avalanche of tantalizing content for fans of Activision's "fragrance" series, including decidedly delicious additions to Blackout, the title's Battle Royale mode, confirming the commitment of the Californian developer to the compose a solid gaming offer, able to keep the interest of the user alive well beyond the first emptied magazines. Unfortunately, however, the range of innovations also includes a resounding change of course on the front of the loot box, back to infest the system of secondary progression of Black Ops 4 as the ghost of Christmas past.
The new season of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 opens with a rather abundant supply of new content for all Black Ops Pass holders, qualitatively and quantitatively in line with the previous Operation Zero Assoluto . As can be guessed, the theme behind Operation Shot Perfect brings on the screens of the fans a whirlwind of recalls to the imaginary of " heist movie " Hollywood, among inveterate criminals, assault cops and breathtaking pursuits. A stylistic fold that the two maps included in the update, Casino and Lockup, embody to perfection, proposing medium sized arenas that support somewhat diversified approaches to combat. Casino in particular, is probably the most complex of the maps currently available to users of Black Ops 4 at least from a tactical point of view.
The large halls of this sumptuous casinos house a large amount of audiovisual coverage and distractions, which make it difficult to identify threats over medium / long distances, while the abundance of access points to larger areas requires careful management of movements and a high spatial awareness. Lockup set in the surroundings of a police station stormed by a criminal phalanx, is instead an excellent battlefield for lovers of close encounters, with a mosaic of narrow spaces and rooms that offer good opportunities for whispering distance. The verticality of the map, especially as regards the secondary buildings, guarantees a certain space of maneuver even to shooters, confirming the strategic plasticity that, more generally, characterizes all the arenas of Black Ops 4. On the same notes, also the design aligns, qualitatively speaking, with that of the previous contents, an appreciation that however can not be fully extended to the new Specialist included in the package. Recovered directly from the roster of Black Ops 3, Outrider is a character who struggles to find an ideal dimension in the "goal" of Treyarch's last effort. If on one hand its bow, equipped with exploding arrows killing the target and damaging the allies in the vicinity, remembers for efficacy the powerful revolver of Seraph with the addition of an intriguing tactical substrate, the The fighter's special equipment is not as appealing. The capabilities of the drone Hawk able to reveal the position of the enemies in a relatively wide area, tend to overlap with the tactical equipment of Recon, which however is much more efficient in the role of reconnaissance. Outrider therefore presents itself as an interesting but not entirely convincing hybrid class.
It does not, however, leave doubts about the return of the much appreciated mode " A shot in the barrel ", which slings the players on the battlefield with a gun, a single bullet and three lives to separate them from the final defeat. A mode with a high rate of tension that was missing from the scenes of Black Ops 2 and that, exactly as then, proves capable of offering great satisfactions, contextually interspersed with impetus motions of a certain caliber.
Guards and thieves
Among the most significant additions of Operation Shot Perfect we also find a substantial update for the Blackout map, left unfortunately in the background during the first phase of the post launch support of Black Ops 4. The update enriches the desert area on the edge of the map with a location born from the synthesis of two arenas that are quite popular among the brand's admirers. The ghost town of Blackout proposes a multilevel structure that recovers the Outlaw profile, the western version of Standoff, while in the caves below a review of Buried challenge the gunslingers to face each other under the assault of a famished horde of zombies.
Stylistically very successful, the new area represents the most striking addition of a complex of changes that have hit different points on the map, now with a greater abundance of groups of buildings where to get equipment keeping the distance from the hottest areas. The impression is that the team has finally gotten the right gear to offer a worthy support to Battle Royale of Black Ops 4 hard hit, like all competitors, from the entry into the field of the all-encompassing Apex Legends.
To give more variety and appeal to the play dough, Treyarch has also provided in Blackout a new mode of pat, more focused on vehicular mechanics in a perspective close to the main theme of the update . Divided into groups of four, players can then get a police car and chase the other teams (with the help of a radar activated by the siren), or opt for powerful smuggler vehicles that can identify the richer points of loot and stocks rained from the sky.
Regardless of the dynamics of " guards and thieves ", the main objective will always be the same: to exterminate every other team. To increase the dynamism of the action there is also a greater speed in the progressive narrowing of the map, accompanied by a greater amount of damage for those who find themselves beyond the limits of the barrier. At the end of each round, in addition, all the fallen members of a team still in play will automatically be brought back to life: a routine that feeds the tension in the final stages of each battle and rewards the appeal to " strategic escapes "to the cardiopalma.
Turning to Zombie mode, Operation Shot Perfect does not enrich the plethora of settings with a new stage where they perform in spectacular horror-themed massacres, but this does not mean that the undead exterminators have been neglected . The new Gauntlet Mode, in fact, challenges the most avid survivors to face a total of 30 rounds of increasing difficulty, each one characterized by a different system of rules. The fighters could then be called on to pass a round without collecting any power-ups, or killing enemies only with headshots.
The violation of a rule will cause the reset of the turn, ending with the worsening of the overall performance of the team in this frenetic, how much fun, "time attack" mode. In general, the second wave of content of Black Ops 4 proposes a decidedly abundant and articulated package, in line with the production values of the previous – and excellent – Operation Zero Assoluto . Too bad that, unlike the predecessor, the DLC brings with it an absolutely unhappy variation with regard to the system of progression of the Black Market, marking the return of the hated loot box.
Loot box and other misfortunes
how much Treyarch has done a good job in re-filling the range of contents of Black Ops 4 with consistent and quality additions, the decision to opt for a traditional Season Pass has over time caused a certain fragmentation of the users, reasonably annoyed by Activision's misalignment from the strategies put in place by the competition. Although questionable, Activision's route seemed to start from the assumption that all seasonal content would be accessible simply by playing, without imposing additional transactions on the public.
A promise at the time also confirmed by Treyarch leaders, and now definitely broken with the arrival of loot boxes in Black Ops 4. These paid packages can in fact contain elements inaccessible for Black Ops Pass holders, including rewards not unlocked during the previous season, additional weapons included. What's more, there is no guarantee that the purchase of a box can offer the buyer rare or really worthy of the investment required, as the selection of content is totally random. Yes, it is still possible to receive coffers as an added bonus for online gaming, but the system is – on the whole – far less rewarding than it was a few weeks ago
Even more so considering that the different tiers of the Black Market seem to deliver in the hands of players players unlockable elements less appealing than those of Operation Zero Absolute probably to encourage the purchase of loot box. It is an inelegant and rather unpleasant strategy, which not only contradicts the reassurances formulated before the launch by the development team, but also marks an annoying step backwards to the structure of the progression of Black Ops 4.