Call Of Duty Vanguard Review Part 3: Multiplayer

Welcome to part three of the Call of Duty Vanguard review! In the final section of this review, we’re going over the most popular aspect of the CoD series… Multiplayer! We love to play it and love to hate it! At least that seems to be the ongoing trend when it comes to CoD titles. So, without further ado, let’s get started!   Call of Duty’s Vanguard multiplayer variant is alright. It’s definitely not anything that stands out in the franchise. It feels rather plain and already done a bunch of times over. On the one hand, everyone seems to want the game to change, but everytime it does, people complain. On the other hand, everyone seems to get upset when it feels like another copy and paste. While it may be the best selling video game year after year, the developers just can’t seem to win us over no matter how hard they try.    As far as I am concerned, Vanguard isn’t anything new and it is disappointing in the sense that this game was delayed last year and they put 4 years into this one. Granted, Sledgehammer Studios had a lot of changes in personnel including leadership, but I can’t really excuse the lack of innovation this time around. Not after 4 years. I will start you off with the good and work my way down to the bad. Keep in mind, this my opinion and it doesn’t have to line up with everyone else’s and it’s not meant to be insulting to those that thoroughly enjoy the game.    Graphically, this game isn’t special on any platform. It’s obviously better looking on a PS5 versus a PS4, but not enough of a difference to really care. It’s smoother looking and all, but it may as well have been released on the PS4 and forget about current Gen platforms. It’s not bad, it just doesn’t live up to expectations.    Audio is pretty good with this title. Footsteps sound much better than they have in recent years. I can tell the difference between my teammates and my enemies when playing matches and that’s pretty important to me. When I’m rushing to the other side of the map to find the enemy team, it helps to hear them coming in from any direction. I don’t use my mini map like I should, so I don’t always look up and notice the blue friendly markers.    I feel like the sound of guns firing weapons and kill streaks has been brought back to a level it needs to be on. Since Modern Warfare, I thought the sound effects were too much and overpowered everything else in my headset and even though I made adjustments, it was still a bit much for me. I know I’m not alone in this opinion, but I also know there’s a good amount of players that disagree with me as well. All that being said, I’m definitely happy with the audio settings.   Controls … Read More

Call of Duty Vanguard Review: Part 2 – The Campaign

Welcome back to our ongoing Call of Duty review of Vanguard. In part 2, we’re discussing the campaign! Believe it or not, there are a lot of people out there still buying the game for the campaign only. I personally could care less for the campaigns, but I still play through them for principal reasons and obviously so I can complete the reviews.    Moving forward, let’s discuss the storyline first. We kicked things off in 1945, during World War II. You are part of the Vanguard Task Force One and tasked with finding enemy intelligence and ultimately making sure the good guys win the war.    Your team is made up of characters from the USA, Russia, England and Australia. A touch crew of misfits at that.    As you play through the game, the story isn’t that great. I won’t spoil anything for you, as I try to avoid that, but I want to. I want to tell you exactly why I don’t like the sorry, but I’ll save that for a time where spoilers aren’t so much a concern anymore. Let’s just say, it’s rather mediocre and there isn’t very bonding with the characters. They are less than memorable.    The graphics of the game irritate me because this game should look amazing. Unfortunately, it’s watered down and doesn’t look very next/current gen. This game was pushed back in 2020, and we got an underdeveloped version of Black Ops Cold War instead. Well, the extra year working on Vanguard didn’t help very much.    Audio is definitely in good standing with me. Footsteps are where they should be and the sound effects aren’t overpowering each other like they do in Cold War and Warzone. A silenced weapon sounds silenced and you can still hear enemy and friendly footsteps over it. I typically turn the music level to zero and make other minor adjustments to fit my play style with little distraction. I use the same settings in the campaign as I do in Multiplayer. I probably shouldn’t as I’m sure I’m missing out on some things, but as I said earlier, I only play the campaign for principal and review reasons.    Controls are tight and work flawlessly, but that’s definitely to be expected. Where the Call of Duty franchise falls short, one thing I can always count on is controls that aren’t clunky or wonky. Responsiveness is extremely important and Vanguard is no exception.    The campaign is of course rather short. I managed to complete it in under 7 hours and that’s with looking around and taking my time to explore what I could when I could. Unfortunately, the storyline isn’t great and the campaign is easily forgettable. I just can’t imagine buying a game at full price and playing it for 7 hours and feeling like I got my money’s worth, but some do, so hopefully they’re satisfied with their purchase.    All in all, I rate the Vanguard campaign a 6 out of … Read More

Call of Duty Vanguard Review: Part One

Welcome to part one of the Call of Duty Vanguard review here at PS5 Gamers! I’m breaking this down to three parts because each mode is a separate experience and some are clearly better than others.    We’re going to start with the worst of the game modes. In my opinion, that would be zombies. I usually compare my Call of Duty reviews to the last 2 titles that have been released, but this has got to be the worst zombies experience in CoD history.    It’s hard for me to believe this game was in development for 4 years. I have sunk a lot of hours into zombies for this review and I’m gonna straight up day it sucks! I play with friends, I play with ransoms and solo matches to boot, but it isn’t satisfying to me and many other players I have spoken with about it are in agreement with me.    The graphics aren’t that great. The other two modes seem to look a little smoother and polished. I feel like zombies mode was a last minute toss in that has a less than stellar storyline. Zombies aren’t difficult to handle. They seem as dumbed downed as ever and I don’t expect my zombies to be smart, but this is just lame. A lot of times the zombies would start chasing me and then bump into each other and seem to get stuck in place.    While that makes for some easy multi kills and easy points, it takes a lot of the thrill away from rounding up a large group and fighting them fairly. Moreover, even without them glitching together, the zombies are too slow and simple. Sure, reaching high level rounds makes them more aggressive, but damn it all, the mode is boring.    The controls are fine and I didn’t notice much clunkiness, so I can’t complain about that.    The graphics just look like trash to me. This game mode would look amazing on my PS3 back in the day and that’s pretty sad and a little frustrating. I don’t think sledgehammer makes that great of games anyway. They’ve always been ok, but nothing more than that.    Audio is pretty good, so there’s little to discuss there. It’s crisp and I can hear the zombies and other sound effects very well. Keep in mind I’m using the PS5 headset with 3D audio, so it’s definitely a lot better than standard tv speakers.   While the story is a prequel to the zombies from Black Ops Cold War, which was a decent experience, this one just stinks and it feels unoriginal. Maybe it’s unoriginal to me because it’s a prequel, but there wasn’t much effort put into this one. I don’t write video game scripts, but I could have done a better job than the writers did with this one.    I probably won’t play anymore zombies unless a buddy begs me to help them through the higher rounds, but they’re really … Read More

Vanguard: First Impressions

Those of us on PlayStation consoles got a chance to play the Call Of Duty Vanguard alpha over the weekend and while it didn’t offer much selection (it was only an alpha after all), it did give us a birds eye view into what we could expect in November.   There are mixed feelings from a lot of players out there and I am no exception. I am not concerned with the graphics of the game. A lot of polishing and some bug fixes isn’t going to change a lot of minds on this one. I’m talking about the advanced weapons in a WWII game. Red dots and holographic sites that are way too advanced for this title.    Part of me doesn’t care. I don’t really play cod for its “realism” as much as I play it for what’s not real. It is a video game after all. But what about the players that want to play something true to it’s time? Vanguard is a made up story and we know that, but some folks want the game to be accurate in regards to weaponry. I’ve listened to their arguments and they have some valid points to make based upon their own personal feelings. While I can see where they’re coming from, it won’t change a thing.    It is to my understanding that the weapons are advanced in order for them to be usable in Warzone, although I can’t really see that being the case. If the weapons needed to be advanced for Warzone, they could add the attachments into the game separately from Vanguard. I’m no programmer, but I feel like that would be the solution, wouldn’t it? They could integrate both titles without sacrificing one for the other, right? Let me know your thoughts on that, because I am curious about what you think. Maybe I’m giving too much credit to developers? I dunno.    Anyway, advanced weaponry aside, we played Champion Hill and it was alright. 2v2 and 3v3 isn’t really my thing. I like larger player counts, but my bias didn’t affect my judgement. I thought they had some cool ideas for what I played. Picking up cash on the ground and hitting the right D-pad button to upgrade my guns was interesting. No building my own loadouts. They gave me what they wanted and I had to work with it. Between rounds we could purchase armor plates, different weapons and support items, etc. It didn’t feel like a call of duty lobby to say the least and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.    Playing the alpha doesn’t tell me enough about the game on whether or not I should get excited for it. I have a habit of getting excited for CoD and being disappointed after release. Hopefully Vanguard turns out to be something really special, because the Cold War (IMO) was lackluster and missed the mark by a long shot.    Are you excited for Call of Duty Vanguard? Let me … Read More

Call of Duty Vanguard Reveal: our impressions

I’m going to start off by saying that if Activision allowed their developers to put as much effort into the actual games as they do the presentations, they would have the greatest games of all time. The reveal for Call of Duty Vanguard is no exception. If only the hype was truly real after release. Anyway, let’s move onto some of the tidbits we’ve learned.    For starters, Activision’s name wasn’t announced during the reveal. If you’re wondering why, we’re pretty sure it’s because Activision has been in some hot water lately and they don’t want the name to burden the hype of the title. It literally opened with “Call of Duty Presents.” Since when is call of duty presenting anything? Lol. That’s fine, Activision. Just keep burying your heads as deep as possible and hope your troubles will go away. They won’t, but keep hoping.    Moving on, we have learned a little bit about what’s to come. Things like reactive rooms. When I say reactive room, I mean that everything in the buildings are supposed to respond to soldiers running through, grenades going off or gun fire shredding through furniture. It’s all supposed to react like it would in real life. At least that is what I am understanding of it.   Throwing a little frustration out there along with some good news, a new anti-cheat system is being deployed into Vanguard and Warzone when the game releases on November 5th. What’s nice is that this new anti-cheat system is focused on PCs and it should improve a lot of crossplay issues we’ve had in the WZ. What’s frustrating is that we will have to continue to deal with an abundance of cheating until then. Of course cheaters will always find another way around, but hopefully we’ll get a few good months of minimal BS.   There is going to be an open beta for everyone to play before the game releases, but if you preorder the game you will get early access to the open beta. You’ll also get a few extra goodies if you preorder a digital version straight to the console. Don’t forget that if you want in on the early access part of the beta, you can always preorder a physical version from a retailer like Amazon, and then cancel your order if you don’t want the game or you decide to go digital.    Zombies will also be joining the game this November. Treyarch will take care of the zombie development and it will be a prologue to the zombies that are currently in Black Ops Cold War. There are a lot of hard core zombie fans that aren’t interested in anything unless it was brought to them by treyarch in the first place and this doesn’t take developers sways from the base game or MP aspects, so this could be a really good move.    The game will be taking up around 100 gigs of hard drive space. Maybe a little less, … Read More

Warzone: Verdansk -1984

Season 3 has dropped in Warzone and there are a lot of mixed feelings that have come along with the latest update. Granting the fact that Warzone is free to play, there a lot of people out there that will say no one should complain because it’s a free game, but let’s be honest here, many of us that do play CoD titles, sink a little bit (or a lot) of cash on microtransactions and the season pass every couple of months. As a paring consumer and video game journalist, I am more than qualified and entitled to complain. So let’s get down to it!    Verdansk: 1984 is the same map with some changes. It’s springtime and the map is a lot brighter and more colorful. So much so, that when you aim down sites, it can seem like the sun glaring a bit too much in your lens and distorts the picture a little bit. Soldiers seem easier to spit out of buildings and that’s kind of nice. Of course when a player is using that good ol ‘Rose skin and hiding in a shady dark corner, it can be really difficult to see them, but that’s not anything new, just been noticing it a little more often lately.    Some of the buildings we are used to seeing and even taking cover in, are under development such as the stadium. Stadium looks to be much smaller of an area than it once was and that’s not because it’s missing the dome cover. It’s missing almost everything. Not to mention the damn is completely gone and has been replaced with Summit. We’re assuming we’ll be getting a back story as to what happened to Summit and why the damn would replace its existence sometime beyond 1984, but maybe they’ll save that one for season 4?    The quarry has become the salt mines and there’s definitely some things I’m missing here, but you get the picture and you’ve probably already played and seen the changes to the map, but there isn’t much more to add to the subject. So, if you felt like the Call of Duty franchise has a nasty habit of recycling maps, this one takes the cake for you. Honestly, it takes the cake for me, but I have my reasons, so hear me out.    The idea that we got the same map with a paint job is irritating to me. It’s been an entire year and while they have done things to try and keep the map fresh, Verdansk: 1984 feels lazy and unoriginal. I know the pandemic hit a lot of developers hard and they have had to work from home and that separation can really put a damper on things, but we’re talking a new map after a year, not a whole new game. I don’t even really hold the developers accountable. I hold Activision’s execs accountable because these are the same people that drove Vince Zampella away from Infinity Ward … Read More

Black Ops: Cold War – The Harsh Review

Well, here are. After a month of the initial release, I can confidently share my thoughts on Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War. I wanted to wait long enough for a couple of meaningful patches to update that game and see if the improvements would give it a better review or if the patches would give anything meaningful at all. The verdict? They kind of don’t.    I try to keep in mind that this title was originally being made by the developers over at Sledgehammer and that Treyarch was called in to take over 2020’s release one year before the game dropped. I don’t know what happened. I don’t know if this game is made up of coding from one studio and mixed from another or if this game was built from the ground up in 12 months. All I know is, something is off about this game.    I’m pretty good when I play Black Ops: Cold War. I don’t fare so well when I am obviously playing against a couple of cheaters on the enemy team, but even then, I manage to find ways to shut down the handful of jerks I come across that are using rapid fire mods, wall hacks and aimbots. Cheaters aside, I’m definitely above average with my strategies and gun gameplay. I can’t say I don’t like the game because I do. I like alright, but it is as they say, a step back.    Treyarch is known for the more arcade playstyle in their games. You don’t expect too much realism with the fast pace movements, and that’s some of the charm Treyarch offers with their games. Unfortunately, the way the game looks and the long list bugs that dropped upon release and not to mention the large number of map exploits, it is clear that this game wasn’t ready and you know what? I don’t blame Treyarch. I blame Activision. Instead of taking a loss for the year and maybe even using Warzone as a backup for revenue, Activision forced this game out the door and put immense pressure on Developers involved with the game. If this was a launch PS4 title, it would seem to fit right in, but it’s a launch next gen title that was rushed out the door and took away any magic we fans might have seen with the first CoD title on a PS5 or Xbox Series X/S.    The campaign is ok. The story was kind of dull, but it had it’s fun moments. I completed the story on the default difficulty mode in about 4-5 hours. It felt like I was playing through a bad 80’s action movie. I know that sounds like an insult, but a bad 80’s movie is kind of a compliment since so many of us think fondly on crappy over the top films that have bad writing and even worse dialogue. I guess it’s charming in its own right. I don’t play CoD games for their … Read More

Warzone – Season 5 thoughts

There is no doubt in my mind that you have heard about the Battle Royale phenomenon that is Warzone. Hugely popular and in my opinion, extremely fun when you allow yourself to enjoy the game.    I know that some of you are thinking “What?! Enjoy a Call of Duty?” Yes, I said I have extreme when I allow myself to enjoy it. Much like other gamers, I get frustrated with the cheaters and issues with the game itself at times, but for the most part, I thoroughly enjoy Warzone.    That being said, I have reached somewhat of a standstill feeling with season 5. The battle pass is a lackluster this time around, although one could technically argue that every pass has had its faults thus far. Regardless of that, I’m not here to nitpick season 5 or discuss the past seasons that are behind us. Sure, the stadium has finally opened up and wouldn’t you know it? Choo-Choo! A train has been added to the map as well. A new operator has been released and there’s a couple new weapons. Aside from these additions that we have come to expect with each season, there hasn’t been a whole lot added. Most of the gamers I have spoke with seem to be dissatisfied with season 5 and I have to say that I don’t feel that this is a typical case of being entitled as much as it is a literal lack of content. Cue the “How are you going to complain about a free game, you entitled twirps!” chimers.    Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s move on, shall we? Excellent!  Check out this solid win in Warzone trios! So anyway, I think a lot of players were hoping the damn would have broken open op by now or that nukes were going to be set off and destroy the map and offer us a new playing field to battle on. While that all would have been cool to see happen, we can’t really be upset over something that hasn’t actually been confirmed is going to happen. I know many of us would like to see some significant changes by now, but it is August, so my guess would be we are going to see some major changes in October. Possibly sooner, but I think the CoD universe is going to make us wait just a little longer before seeing any meaningful additions or changes.    If you’re a big Call of Duty fan, you probably know that I’m getting at the next Black Ops games. Black Ops has been getting teasers in the Warzone. While we haven’t had an official reveal yet, publisher Activision says Warzone has made the company rethink the way it reveals games and it seems as though Black Ops will get a reveal in Warzone. Are they taking a few pages from the devs at Epic? Will we see an actual video reveal during a movie night in … Read More

Warzone – Tips for a BR win

So, Warzone has been out for a month today and it should come as no surprise that the free to play title has reached over 50 million unique players thus far. With more Gamers downloading the game everyday, not everyone is prepared for the Warzone. I have put together some of my best tips to try and help out new and not so new players to help give you a little extra edge.  Where to drop…  This is an interesting topic as some players just want to drop into chaos and start a gun fight as quickly as possible and others like to drop somewhere unpopulated, so they can start looting and try to get a headstart for better weapons and equipment. Idf you’re new to the game, I would suggest taking a look at the map to see where the circle is located. Try dropping just outside of the circle and watch for enemy players to see where they go. This gives you a moment to breathe and pick up items as you decide on your game plan.    Once you land…  You’ve made it to the ground and it’s time to prepare for battle. Even if you didn’t see enemies dropping into the same site, stay vigilant. You never know when a squad or a solo commando will try and take you out quickly. You’ll want to ransack houses, buildings, whatever you see. As soon as you get your first armor plate, put it on for maximum health. Pick up whatever weapons you think you’ll do best with, but I highly recommend grabbing silenced weapons when possible. This will keep you off the radar and give a good opportunity for a surprise attack. Loudout Drops…  perhaps one of the most important tips I can offer in Warzones Battle Royale mode, is grabbing a loadout drop. Loadout drops do come into the game on their own, but I like to buy one in the beginning of the match. A team that works together can easily pool the money together to buy a loadout drop early on. While I personally think loadout drops shouldn’t be a part of the game, they are and if you don’t utilize them, you are at a disadvantage.    What should be in your loadout?  Well, this is definitely up for debate, but I have a few suggestions that I think work well in the field. As far as weapons go, you should really go with what you are most accurate with. I use the M13 in both BR and Plunder for its incredibly low recoil. Using the perks Cold-Blooded, Ghost and Tracker are a great combo to stay off the radar and move comfortably through the map. Using Tracker can help a lot when trying to pinpoint a diligent enemy, but I also like to switch that out with Tune Up to reduce the revive time by 25%. It really depends on the players I’m partied up with. Slap a Heartbeat Sensor on … Read More

Warzone review part 2 – Plunder

Welcome to part 2 of the Warzone overview and review. If you missed the first which covers the Battle Royale basics of Warzone, you can read that here.  Moving forward in part 2, we’re taking a look at the Plunder game mode and dropping a full review score. Let’s dig in!   Plunder is definitely not a Battle Royale mode, but it is large scale multiplayer fun. Rather than a last man/team standing, the first team of three to collect 1 million dollars, will reign as the winner of a match. As simple as that sounds, there is a lot more than meets the eye here.  For starters, at the beginning of a match you get to spawn with your own custom class load out. Those of us that have been playing multiplayer all along with the full game, will have some serious advantage over new players sharing a lobby. Not only are we experienced with our weapons of choice, but most have leveled up all of the weapons available. Luckily for new players, Plunder is littered with weapons and crates, just like the Battle Royale mode. That really gives them a sporting chance until they manage to level themselves up.   So, loadouts aside, let’s discuss the main objective and how to get that win for you and the squad. The objective as I said before, is to be the first team to collect 1 million dollars in cash. You will find lots of loot laying around the map, so it’s important to pick up extra bucks you can find, but be vigilant. There will be enemy teams hunting down other players in order to kill them and take their cash. Not to fret, there are ways to secure that hard earned money you’ve got the duffel bag. As with the Battle Royale mode, you can also complete contracts for extra money and lootable items. There is no closing gas circle in Plunder, so you’re free to explore the map wherever or whenever you’d like.  When you manage to score a large amount of cash, it might be wise to try and secure it. This way, if an enemy manages to kill you, you will leave very little behind. Whatever you manage to deposit, will be safe for the rest of the match. You don’t have to deposit the money. If you’re up for the challenge, you could always try and run the entire match without a deposit, but that is quite a challenge to win as the top three teams with the most cash will be highlighted on the map for all to see and hunt down.    There are two ways to secure the cash. There are large helicopter pads around the map. Once a player calls in a chopper, everyone in the match is alerted. It becomes a dangerous game as some teams might be staking out around a deposit spot to ambush players and then steal and deposit the cash for themselves. You can … Read More