|Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare|
|release date||November 2016|
The Call of Duty series is moving further and further into the future. Each new game tries to move forward along the line of supposed technical progress, increasing the degree of fantasy and futurism in what is happening. Last year’s Black Ops 3 turned into a cyberpunk thriller. And the fresh Infinite Warfare takes the war to the cosmic level.
The story of the new Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare still does without green men and alien invasions. Mankind has used up the resources of the Earth and began to actively explore the native solar system. The process of colonization of nearby planets and satellites began. And it all ended with the usual inequality and discontent of the colonists, which led to the emergence of a military fanatical structure that is ready to fight against the dictates of the Earth. This United Front will eventually deal a death blow to the progenitor planet.
All this backstory is very muddy, but the game traditionally does not bother with cunning plot elaboration. There is a terrible enemy, and there are heroes who resist the threat – that’s the whole synopsis. Around such a simple formula, the main narrative is built. It does not do without an important mega-villain, but it is written extremely superficially. There are some attempts to mold him into something important for the game story, but if you throw out this character, then the plot will not lose anything. Even the villain from Ghosts (the previous Infinity Ward game) cosplaying Nolan’s Bane looks more convincing against the background of the current antagonist.
But the game plays well with the development of the character of the protagonist, who at some point turns out to be a senior officer on a space cruiser. Having taken command upon himself, he takes the burden of responsibility for other people’s lives. The fate of his subordinates depends on his decisions, and in the course of the story one has to watch how their ranks thin out. In the end, everything turns into a story of self-sacrifice and heroism, returning the game to the key meanings of the title.
The narrative structure of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare is built around the desire to portray something epic or unusual. Logic suffers for the sake of the wow effect, sometimes too much. For example, the plot twist with the release of the spy looks like the height of idiocy.
Infinite Warfare borrows a lot from other games in the series. The possibility of side missions in Black Ops 2 has been peeped. After you take the reins of command of a military cruiser, a series of special operations opens up in different parts of the solar system. They are not connected to a key storyline, but allow you to weaken the enemy’s forces. At the same time, completing such tasks gives you various upgrades for weapons and a space fighter. Between missions, you visit the bridge and different compartments of the ship, learn new data about the course of the war and watch the consequences of your actions on the TV news screen. There is in this something from the atmosphere of a space adventure in the spirit of Mass Effect, although the analogies are very distant.
In terms of game mechanics, regular battles are reminiscent of the latest games in the series. The character can jump high and run on walls. That is, all fashionable “chips” are available. It’s just that the level design is such that there is little reason to use them. This is not Titanfall 2, where the gameplay is based on the high mobility of the hero, and you constantly need to use wall runs. This is rarely mentioned here.
The game resembles a familiar shooting range, where you rush from one point to another, destroying everything on the way. Enemies take up solely due to their accuracy and numerical superiority. At the same time, thanks to the new graphics and active post-effects, there is often a problem with the localization of the enemy, when blurring the image, it is simply not visible in all the confusion. The arsenal is represented by a wide range of firearms and energy weapons. There are auxiliary technical means – hacking combat robots, flying drones, different types of grenades.
Enemies are divided into two types – people in combat gear and robots. Not to say that there is a big difference between them, but with the latter, the idea of \u200b\u200bmass attack is sometimes successfully played up, when robots roll in whole waves. Also among the robotic opponents there are special fighters with shields, there are fights with large combat vehicles.
All ground operations are performed in the familiar style of Call of Duty. There is no originality in them, but the change of situations and some staged moments make them more vivid. The main innovation of the game was space battles. From time to time, we need to act in open space, shooting off opponents on the ship’s hull or among asteroids.
Not without battles at the helm of a virtual fighter. We will play the role of a pilot quite often, fighting both other fighters and large warships. A lot of emphasis is placed on such battles, the developers even went too far with them. If you complete all the secondary tasks, then in the end these fights begin to frankly annoy, because each battle develops according to the same pattern.
The story campaign is complemented by the “Zombies” mode, which this time offers to shoot the ghouls in the entourage of the 80s among the amusement park. Well, the main dish for the old-timers of the series will be multiplayer, and it is for them. The increased damage of weapons in online mode has led to the fact that inexperienced players immediately become victims for beating. With exoskeletons, new movement options, and intricate map designs, players have greater freedom of action, not limited to one plane. There are a lot of technical lotions and other attributes of the latest games in the series.
Infinite Warfare relies on a bright picture and unusual fantastic views, inviting the player to walk on other planets and fight in the fantastic interiors of space stations. Thanks to the updated engine, the picture pleases the eye. The game works well with lighting, around reflective and glare surfaces. Therefore, the surroundings fit perfectly into the idea of how a fantastic action movie should look like.
At the same time, the game has moderate system requirements. Modern mid-range solutions allow you to comfortably play in Full HD. This is clearly seen from the results of our small test, which was carried out on a standard test configuration used to compare video cards. The tests were carried out in the mission “Black Sky” in a scene where the hero must get out of a vehicle that crashed onto a building, kill enemies that jumped on the cab, and shoot other opponents below.
This moment is full of different effects, which loads the GPU well. All graphics settings are set to maximum, but in the post-processing section, Filmic effects and graininess are lowered to the average level. Anti-aliasing SMAA T2x.
Even budget models provide good fps. But it should be noted that with 2 GB of video memory, some detailed textures are not loaded. So we recommend solutions with more memory. The Radeon RX 460 and Radeon R9 270X have similar performance figures with different amounts of memory. The GeForce GTX 1050 Ti shows a good advantage over the GeForce GTX 960. The Radeon RX 470 8GB is faster than the younger version of the GeForce GTX 1060 3GB.
Complaints of some players about the blurry picture are associated with active post-processing effects and anti-aliasing. Reducing the intensity of the Filmic filter, the graininess, and turning on the simple SMAA 1x option will make the picture sharper.
The addition to the expanded edition of Infinite Warfare was the much-anticipated re-release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered. The first part of the Modern Warfare trilogy offers a familiar story on an updated engine with better character and environment detail, better lighting effects. In general, everything is brought to a more modern level.
The gameplay itself remained unchanged and some alterations. It is not so fast, there is no bet on the wow effect, which is based on megalomania and widespread explosions. But in some aspects the game is more thoughtful and even more interesting than its fantastic successor. For example, surfaces being shot through are already perceived even somehow unexpectedly.
In terms of working with reflections and light, Modern Warfare Remastered is simpler than Infinite Warfare. And in general, it is felt that the re-release has a different technological level. System requirements are about the same, but the ratio between AMD and NVIDIA graphics cards is different. The results of our comparative testing at the “Total Eclipse” level are below.
In the updated Modern Warfare, NVIDIA solutions feel more confident. The younger GeForce GTX 1060 shows a big lead over the Radeon RX 470. The GeForce GTX 1050 Ti plays about 14% of this AMD representative. The Radeon RX 460 is weaker than the GeForce GTX 950 and is unable to provide a comfortable frame rate. This game is also demanding on the size of the video buffer, but there is no such obvious problem with muddy textures at 2 GB. Reducing the SMAA to a simple 1x level will improve the clarity of the picture in this game as well.
Thanks to the space theme, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare looks very unusual. Although there is a clear overkill here with battles in space, the developers paid more attention to this than was required. The rest of the game develops the ideas embodied in the past parts of Call of Duty. It is played cheerfully, looks spectacular, but is perceived secondarily. After completing the storyline, there is no incentive to return to the single player game. In this regard, last year’s Black Ops 3, with its co-op and additional zombie-themed story campaign, looks more interesting. But this is not a problem, since there is a familiar zombie mode and traditional multiplayer. Infinite Warfare will do just fine as an annual entertainment until the release of the next Call of Duty.