You’ve read the previews, you’ve listened to Eminem’s trailer and you know all about the new game modes and killstreaks. Here’s what you haven’t thought about: All the new ways you’re going to be killed in Call of Duty: Ghosts.
Nothing says pressure like a 30-second timer counting down to your own explosion. That’s Cranked, Call of Duty: Ghosts’ most exciting new mode that gives you just 30 seconds to live, unless you kill again before time runs out.
But it’s the inevitable self-inflicted death when you fail to exert your dominance that is the most exciting part of Cranked — if you see it happen to someone else, of course.
You’ll simply spontaneously explode from the inside out when the timer hits zero, like an egg stuck in an overzealous microwave.
Hit by a marksman
Ghosts introduces a new weapon class, and the most challenging to master, with Marksmen rifles. It bridges the gap between the range of a sniper rifle and the convenience of an assault weapon. The Marksman class will deliver devastating kills, but leave you vulnerable to attack when used with a reckless disregard.
Unlike the more robust assault or submachine guns, marksman weapons are perfect in their strike zone but as useless as wheels on a fish on either side. As a new class, it’ll take time for average players to become efficient. It also means more deaths from an unfamiliar range.
WTF: The world comes crashing down
A great many terrible things can happen on dynamic maps. The gas station exploding on Octane is Infinity Ward’s party trick, but that will have little consequence unless you’re in the vicinity when it goes boom.
It’s other, more catastrophic, changes that will have you hurling abuse on Xbox Live. By completing three field objectives in a game, a teammate of mine nuked an entire map during one of the team deathmatch games I played last week. It instantaneously killed everyone on the opposing team and dazed the allies for a few seconds, leaving us confused and questioning what had just happened.
There’s absolutely nothing you can do about a dynamic shift that kills everyone in the opposing squad.
Mauled by your dog’s best friend
Riley the dog (or a convincing lookalike) backs up his starring role in the campaign as a killstreak perk in multiplayer. But that means the strong emotional bonds you’ll form with him will inevitably end in bitter pain as an identical mutt leap at your throat.
Riley can be called in for the same price as a care package in Black Ops 2 as a companion that savages enemies and warns of incoming attacks.
But you’re not the only one with access to the K-9 unit. Enemies can call in what appears to be exactly the same dog; a dog that will kill you. However, if you have your own dog and they run into each other, they’ll be overcome with loyalty and begin to fight.
Killed by a bot
Online play completes the circle of life in Call of Duty: Ghosts, where you’ll no longer have to put up with human adversaries or teammates just to play online.
Squads offer several gameplay modes, and the bulk of them remove the need for all soldiers to be controlled by a human. Wargame, for example, has you tackle a challenging team of advanced AI. Meanwhile, Squad Assault has you and five of your squad-mates, controlled by the AI, combat an AI team developed by another player.
While they’re super advanced, it’s a deep game mode and all that jazz, it all boils down to another way to die: you’ll be killed by bots.
Sacrificed for the greater good
Search and Rescue, a re-imagining of Search and Destroy, is eerily quiet as nobody wants to make the first move. Then all hell breaks loose, and it’s everyone for themselves.
Borrowing dog tags from Kill Confirmed, S&R; gives your teammates a chance to save your life. If they collect the fallen memento from atop your vanished corpse you’ll respawn, However, if you’re left to die and an enemy collects the trophy, you’re out of the game until the next round.
After playing five matches, there was a clear trend: if you happen to stumble across a friendly dog tag it’s worth picking up, but if it compromises your position, they must be sacrificed so you can live.