Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare

I’ll be honest, I never had any intention of playing, let alone writing about a Call of Duty game since starting this site.

Perhaps a little childish (Very. And honestly, quite pathetic!), I didn’t want to be seen as a COD-playing chav, to be honest. Being a Halo fan and a teen in the years when these things mattered (in reality they never really did….), I’ve always held these games at arms reach.

Sure, I played through a couple of campaigns of the Modern Warfare games, on recommendation of my brother, and enjoyed them enough, but the stigma surrounding multiplayer, the kids messaging death threats etc, it didn’t really leave me excited for more.

Still, I love a bargain and fancied something different. So here we are…….

Infinite Warfare

A pretty ominous title really, isn’t it? Thankfully, it’s just a title, and the game doesn’t have endless amounts of war (although if you keep playing it, maybe it does?).

What it does have (I should note I’ve only played the campaign so far) is an excellent, fun and great looking space war.

I didn’t expect that I would have much fun with a Call of Duty campaign, particularly in Infinite Warfare, because from what I remember, the game wasn’t particularly well received (turns out it was the multiplayer that was poorly received).  So, with low expectations, I found myself massively surprised really quickly.

There are zero-gravity combat missions, where you’re out in space shooting bad guys.  You pilot a space-fighter ship to engage in dogfights with some pretty tight controls.  Then you’ve got the standard “boots on the ground” missions where you’re fighting through corridors of ships, buildings, the lot.

Sure, the narrative isn’t particularly great.  But it makes up for it with some pretty decent performances, some really really nice looking cutscenes and character models, and a whole lot of fun.

Getting stuck in

I fancy myself an FPS veteran of sorts.  I’ve played a billion of them. Doesn’t mean I’m good at them, but I like to give myself a challenge, so I opted for the equivalent of the “hard” mode.

I’m really pleased I did, because I’ve been adequately punished for being an idiot and forced to properly think about my surroundings and the equipment I have to hand (more on that in a second).

Allied AI (man, I love Ethan and Salter) is decent enough, and they’ve saved my ass a few times. 

Enemy AI isn’t great in terms of flanking and pushing on your position, but the scripted spots that they sit at, have been well considered, and the accuracy is excellent.  Being out in the open is just a big no-no, and rightly so.  These are active combat zones after all!

Gear?

I love an FPS that gets creative with the tools you have at your disposal, and the opportunity to improve it by completing side missions is great too.

Fact is though, there’s some really decent thing here (barring the foam wall or whatever it’s called). 

My favourite go-to items were the remote hacking device that allowed the hacking and control of enemy robot troops.  Being able to take out infantry from their side of the battlefield was really cool, and better yet, self-detonating in the middle of a group of enemies is super satisfying!

After that, there are anti-gravity grenades, seeker robots that just wander to the nearest enemy, latch on, and then explode.  There’s a portable shield that is really useful for letting you see enemies through walls and of course a good old shield-bash.

You have the standard frag grenade, you have a drone that just identifies targets and goes to kill them, just flying around.  It’s not particularly well armoured, but it’s really helpful whilst it’s alive!

If you’re playing a game where space fights are a thing, having a bit of fun with explosives and future-looking tech is definitely in order, and everything is excellent.

Casting…..

Who knew a Call of Duty game would attract some big names for parts in the story.

The headline in this game was the inclusion of Kit Harrington as the main antagonist.  He seemed mean/mental enough.  It’s not a role that works for Kit so much, but perhaps that’s my mental type-casting?

Weirdly, I was just coming back to the bridge of my ship and this dude came up to me to tell me that the news was on the TV around the corner………Ok then…….Wait……I know that face and voice! Is that Lewis Hamilton? As in F1 Driver Lewis Hamilton?  Why yes, yes it is!  Big name for a small cameo, very weird but kinda cool.

Claudia Black of Farscape fame, whose voice I recognised immediately, big fan.

David Harewood, who to be honest was excellent but I know his face and voice better than his name.  My bad.

That’s the big ones, and the ones I picked up on.

The voice acting and motion capture was fantastic and the faces looked incredible.  I really really enjoyed being part of the conversations with all of them.  The story wasn’t great, but the delivery really was.

Side missions

One big surprise to me, was when I was faced with the opportunity to choose what mission I wanted to do.  Call of Duty games are a linear corridor-shooter, with missions going from one to the other, having a cutscene in between them.  Or so I thought.

Here, I had the opportunity to pick some side missions, which I thought was pretty cool.  There aren’t many, and they don’t vary too much, but you get to earn gear upgrades, knock off some more of the enemy faction top-brass and do more of the fun stuff like space dogfights, boarding enemy destroyers from outside (in space!) and destroying them or removing weapons etc from them.

The bit that hooked me in, is that the noticeboard in your office, with a playing card assigned to each of the top-brass that work for Kit Harrington (I really can’t remember the names of the faction or the characters…..).  In most missions you kill them on their destroyers, or better yet, in dogfights, because they’re ace pilots.  It’s a nice touch, completely optional, but something I was compelled to complete.

None of these have to be done, bar perhaps one, but the additional upgrades, new items and getting rid of all the enemy commanders make it a worthwhile jaunt.  Particularly when it’s only really adding a couple of hours to the whole campaign.

Worth a punt?

I haven’t touched the Zombies mode (a big deal in Call of Duty games), nor have I given the online multiplayer a bash (the key selling point for Call of Duty games).  But I got the game for a tenner, and I’ve easily had my money’s worth, just in pure fun.

The standard, excellent Call of Duty shooting mechanics and feel.  Great set-pieces, with loads of over-the-top action and chaos.  Great cast, fun dogfights and space fighting.  It’s mostly ridiculous, with a touch of that “we love the military” America vibe.  But it’s just bloody good.

I’ll dive into the other bits, but I’m more than happy to recommend this based on the campaign, alone.  Some nice easy achievements, and some fun ones (look up “you know nothing” – nice tip to Kit Harrington as Jon Snow in Game of Thrones), if you’re that way inclined.

If you see it cheap, or if you fancy giving a Call of Duty campaign a bash, I’d say go for it.

It’s a highly recommended from Ninja Refinery, which honestly is more of a surprise to me than it probably will be to anyone else!  Now I want to see what else I’ve been missing out on in the COD universe.  Let’s see if I can find any more bargains…..

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