Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare full review
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, along with Battlefield 1 are two of the most popular first-person shooters of 2016, with the two franchises offering wildly different experiences. Call of Duty has gone full Hollywood with a Sci-fi storyline, offering an experience that’ll take you away from the surface of the Earth to the moon and the stars beyond. Has Infinity Ward made the right choice for the Call of Duty series, or should Infinite Warfare be jettisoned into space and forgotten about? We’ve spent some time playing Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and here’s what we think. Read next: Most anticipated games of 2016 & 2017
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Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare review: UK pricing and availability
So, when can you buy Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, and how much will it set you back? The game is now on sale after being released on Friday, 4 November 2016 and is available to buy from a number of retailers, however there’s a catch - there are, as usual, a few different editions available for Call of Duty Infinite Warfare. We've detailed them below so you can see what you get with each one:
- Standard Edition – includes Infinite Warfare -£44.99
- Legacy Edition and Digital Legacy Edition – Includes both Call of Duty: Infinite
- Warfare and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered - £69.99.
- Legacy Pro Edition (PS4 and Xbox One) – Includes all of the above plus a collectible Steelbook, official game soundtrack and additional digital items - £109.99.
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Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare review: Single-player campaign
Before we delve into the amazing world of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, we thought we’d first address a feud that has been going on for as long as we can remember: Call of Duty Vs Battlefield. While the two games were originally quite similar in terms of gameplay and scope, the two have gone their separate ways over the years and we think this is most evident with the two most recent releases, Battlefield 1 and Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. Click here for more games news and reviews
Battlefield 1 is emotional, gripping and focuses on the stories of those that fought and died during WW1 and while Infinite Warfare has an emotional storyline, it’s much more ‘blockbuster’ than the competition. Buildings collapsing around you, ships falling from the sky and warships being blown up in zero gravity are just a handful of the sights that you’ll see in Infinite Warfare. It’s Hollywood-esque in execution, but this isn’t a bad thing when depicting a fictional war – indulge in the chaos and SFX and it’ll make the Infinite Warfare experience a much greater one.
Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare is set in an alternate timeline where Humans have travelled to the stars and colonised Mars, just as Tesla CEO Elon Musk plans to do in the real world. However, in this skewed vision of humanity’s future, some “Martians” believe that Mars should be a free and independent planet, separate from Earth and no longer under rule of the home planet. The residents of Mars don’t understand the logic of freedom, and prefer the militarised lives that they lead on the red planet.
While the ideology of an independent Mars is shared amongst the entire Martian front, Infinity Ward decided to seek the acting expertise of Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington to bring the character of Admiral Salen Kotch to life. Harington is a great addition to the game, and really helped us engage with his character and motivations. Whether on the surface of a moon or orbiting a far-away planet, Earth’s united military and Mars’ Settlement Defence Front go head to head in a some of the most incredible backdrops from any Call of Duty game in the series.
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For all those trying to poke holes in the mechanics of the game by pointing out that you can’t hear sound in the vacuum of space, developer Infinity Ward has an explanation (courtesy of PlayStation Blog): “In the game, there’s a way your suit can simulate those sounds and impacts through photons so that you have a tactical awareness of your environment. We’ve dampened the sound a little, but it’s still there to make sure the player has a good time. This is actually not science fiction either — it’s actually very plausible.” So yeah, take that nay-sayers.
The environments featured in Infinite Warfare are absolutely stunning – there’s no other way to describe them. Battling on Saturn’s moon Europa was a personal favourite of ours, as everything - from the lighting to the quality of the textures used and Saturn in the picturesque backdrop – was realistic, stunning and really helped immerse us in the extraterrestrial battlefield.
With that being said, we weren’t expecting much from zero-gravity gunplay but after spending time with Infinite Warfare’s zero-gravity mechanics (thanks to a booster suit you wear), we must admit that we’re converted. Battling in an asteroid belt is a new and exciting experience and when paired with a grapple offers a completely new way to play the game. You can use asteroids for shelter, or grapple your enemy, pulling them towards you and finishing them off in typical Call of Duty fashion. Triggering a grenade on the enemy’s suit and boosting away has to be our favourite of the bunch though, it never gets old. Plus, watching your defeated enemies float off into the vastness of space is strangely satisfying.
Of course, not all gunplay takes place in anti-gravity environments, and it’s here that the old-school Call of Duty mechanics shine through, providing extremely fast paced, dramatic and thrilling gameplay. Tight corners provide tense moments, especially when you turn a corner and see an enemy aiming an RPG at you and have a split second to react before you’re blasted to smithereens. It’s the same core mechanics that keep Call of Duty fans flocking back, year after year, and we’d argue that this particular implementation of gunplay and movement mechanics provides the best gameplay of any Call of Duty game to date.
However, with that being said, we were quite surprised at just how intuitive and fun flying around in the state-of-the-art Jackal was. The Jackal is your personal ship enabling inter-planetary exploration, allowing you to take on the enemy in space as well as the various planets the campaign takes you to. The control scheme is simple-yet-effective and when combined with a responsive ship, dog fighting can – and is – one of the most enjoyable elements of the game. Each type of enemy ship has its own strengths and weaknesses and part of the fun is figuring out how to take each down (as well as blowing it to pieces, of course).
Although Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare’s campaign is dramatic and Hollywood-esque in both design and execution, there are snippets of real emotion weaved throughout its tapestry. Despite being a war taking place in a fictional timeline, the monumental decisions of those taking part in the war are just as difficult as those posed in Battlefield 1, although with much more fanfare and country-sized explosions. The Captain’s job is to win the war for those back home, not make sure their troops survive – a notion reinforced throughout the Infinite Warfare campaign. The storyline is engaging, thought-provoking and is hands down our favourite Call of Duty game in the series.
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