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Review: Call of Duty: WWII: The Resistance

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A slight alteration

Call of Duty is back to World War II. After blasting off into another galaxy so far away from the original ideals of the series, it made sense. After all we were getting to the point where all three Call of Duty developers (which is still wild to think about) were tangoing with far-future concepts. It was a bit much.

Call of Duty: WWII is good, but safe. That principle applies directly to its first DLC.

Call of Duty: WWII: The Resistance (PC, PS4 [reviewed], Xbox One)
Developer: Sledgehammer Games
Publisher: Activision
Released: January 30, 2018 (PS4) / TBA (PC, Xbox One)
MSRP: $14.99 ($50 Season Pass for four packs)

There aren't any goofy water park maps this time around (Treyarch is the king of those), and maybe that's probably for the best in a game that makes some attempt to strive for historical reverence. Maybe it also prepares you for the realization that this DLC doesn't really stray too far from what we've been given in the retail version of WWII.

Anthropoid is such a safe map I had to do a double take to make sure it wasn't already in the base package. That's not necessarily a terrible thing, as this restrained board has a good mix of alleyways without feeling too claustrophobic, and balances indoor and outdoor settings in a quaint town in Prague quite well. I say this a lot, but if this came up in a rotation I wouldn't complain.

A tiny dock area offers a bit of respite, and although it feels ridiculous to say in 2018, it's nice that we're able to swim around a bit in water without popping an instant death animation.

Occupation has a little more going on. There's more carnage, more verticality, and more detail within the various locales, like the horrific butcher shop that's attached to a burning building. A center courtyard makes for some fun bloodbaths, and the general shtick of the map's inferno does work.

Sledgehammer has a way with its DLC that's a little too formulaic, but more consistent than their contemporaries at Infinity Ward.

And then there's Valkyrie. I had immediate flashes of Redwood from Black Ops III, which is a good thing thematically for WWII. The giant Maschinenraum (machine + room) building serves as a proper tone-setter, with several other office buildings and industrial complexes to duck into. Once again, things are on fire, just in case you forgot you were in a war. Chiding aside it's the best map in the pack by far.

Valkyrie is the third and final traditional map of the DLC, a stark departure to what we've been used to from Activision for a long, long while (basically since 2009, when World at War adopted the "three maps and a zombie" archetype).

In lieu of a fourth map is Operation Intercept, an addition to war mode -- an alteration of the DLC formula I'm more than okay with.

These really remind me of Unreal Tournament's missions in a big way, and your job here is to battle it out to free French resistance leaders and stop a train heading to the frontlines. Figuring out how best to approach split hostages with your team is fun, as is blowing up enemy radio equipment and commandeering a tank to ultimately blow up a train.

It still has that janky feel to it, like these missions were never truly meant to work with the existing engine, but with the player-versus-player element injected in war matches are a good way to break up the constant deathmatches and zombie interludes. Speaking of zombies...

Yep, zombies are back, because why not? Every Call of Duty has zombies in them now. The Darkest Shore continues the storyline of the base map, a trend I'm happy to see. Having a side campaign to work toward that has a little more creative freedom attached to it is an old-school idea, and although I'm acutely aware that Activision knows how much money it rakes in and still gets plenty of stream play, it's also a sort of last bastion of arcade-style gameplay.

Moving onto Darkest Shore, I'm down with the grittier horror vibe (and in this case, flashes of Saw) because it's something different. Past zombie maps flirted with atmospheric horror, camp, and even outright parody, but the WWII attempt at edge does work because it isn't trying to emulate a past style within the Call of Duty universe. A Nazi sea fortress is just hokey enough to work on multiple levels, and the same goes for the drama from the new cast.

I like the transition here from sailing into the island on a boat to immediately fending off former allies who have been turned on a beachfront. Zombie map creators have been working toward more tangible goals outside of esoteric Easter eggs for a while, which work well in tandem with all the other tricks they've thrown in here. When the fog rolls in and the unsettling T-Virus-style creatures run up on you, it's legitimately creepy.

When assessing these packs I try to rate the sum of their parts, and more often than not, the A-game of the zombie team elevates these DLCs. Call of Duty: WWII: The Resistance is another one of those times where the extra bits upstage the main attraction of the maps.

[This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]

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Call of Duty: WWII: The Resistance reviewed by Chris Carter

7

GOOD

Solid and definitely has an audience. There could be some hard-to-ignore faults, but the experience is fun.
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Chris Carter
Chris CarterReviews Director, Co-EIC   gamer profile

Chris has been enjoying Destructoid avidly since 2008. He finally decided to take the next step, make an account, and start blogging in January of 2009. Now, he's staff! ------------------- T... more + disclosures


 


 


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