JACK BELL REVIEWS CALL OF DUTY MODERN WARFARE’S GRITTIER, ZOMBIFIED HAVOC DLC
Back in November, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare launched to critical acclaim – heralded as the best in the series since the glory days of Modern Warfare, it was a smash hit. Now, four months on, the game’s first expansion pack has arrived to keep things fresh. Priced at £11.59, or free for season pass holders, Havoc is one of the largest Call of Duty DLC packs to date. Included are the following: four new maps, a brand new weapon and a new game mode, the much-hyped Exo Zombies.
As with every other previous Call of Duty expansion, Havoc includes a number of new locations for the game’s multiplayer mode. They are as follows: Drift, Core, Sideshow and Urban. Drift is a large, visually stunning map set in a ski resort. It features many long lines of site, much suited to long-range assault rifle combat. It also features a carousel at the centre of the map, which players are able to hop on to unleash 360 degrees of mayhem.
The second map, Core, is based in the ruins of a nuclear power plant. A circular map with many curved corridors. It’s one of the smaller maps but seems virtually never-ending, giving it an impressive illusion of size.
Sideshow is the largest of the three, and arguably one of the biggest the series has ever seen. Set in what can only be described as a clown town, it features, well, clowns – there’s a massive clown in the centre, which launches grenades out of its hat, and there are countless clown mannequins and models all over the place. It’s a bright, colourful map that is a total hoot to play on.
Urban is the final map and is destined to become a fan favorite – it’s the spiritual successor to Black Ops’ Nuketown, featuring two buildings on either side of a small battlefield. The maps – Drift and Urban in particular – are varied and interesting, with many unique features (such as Drift’s map-changing avalanche, and Core’s assault drones). Despite having only two ways to play on them (Team Deathmatch and a mixed playlist), they’re some of the best the series has seen in a while and the gauntlet has been thrown for future expansions.
In addition to the maps, Havoc includes a new weapon, the AE4 assault rifle. Like the EM1 and EPM3, it’s a directed energy weapon that fires lasers instead of bullets. It’s a somewhat skill-based weapon; accurate players will be able to utterly dominate with it, whereas average players might struggle with its slow rate of fire. A variant of the AE4 is also included, the AE4 Widowmaker – it’s more accurate but fires slower, and features a snazzy blue laser.
Perhaps the pack’s main selling point, Exo Zombies is a fresh take on the fan favourite zombie mode seen in previous Call of Duty games. The undead are back, this time with a new lease of un-life – like the player, the zombies utilize the game’s three-dimensional Exo movement system to boost, jump and dash their way all over the map. Slaying the walking dead has never been so much fun; vaulting over a huge crowd of undead whilst cornered is immensely satisfying, as is launching yourself into the air and unleashing rockets at the hoards below. It does have its downsides – currently, there is only a single map, although more are rumoured to be on their way in future expansions. Alone, or with friends, Exo Zombies is a total blast and is arguably worth the entry price on its own. As a bonus, eagle-eyed players will want to keep an eye out for the surgical tools hidden across the map – if you collect all three, something awesome happens. Curious as to what it is? You’ll just have to play and find out for yourself!
Call of Duty: Havoc is the first expansion pack for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, and is available now for £11.59 (free for season pass holders).