What is Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare?
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is a first person shooter set in the 2050s. Equipped with all manner of futuristic (although not quite sci-fi) weaponry, you take on the role of a soldier in an elite military-for-hire known as Atlas. Facing off against a terrorist threat that wants to bring "the west" to its knees because of its reliance on technology, it's a suitably adrenaline fuelled blockbuster that doesn't let up from start to finish.
How do you play Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare?
With plenty of explosion, a few collapsing buildings, and lots and lots of guns, Advance Warfare is bombastic, relentless, and adrenaline fuelled. Making your way through the game's gritty levels, you're held very much by the hand, with helpful waypoint markers ever present on screen showing you where to go next, and little in the way of freedom to let you get lost. Instead, you'll move through corridors and city streets, engaging in fire fights with hundreds of enemies, whether they be human or drones, making use of some advanced technology along the way - like the handy target grenades, which highlight any enemies within a certain radius in red.
Along with a substantial single player campaign, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare also has a variety of multiplayer modes, which make up a substantial chunk of the game's appeal. Letting players face off against each other in an array of modes, from the standard Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch (where players/teams simply compete to rack up the highest number of kills), to Kill Confirmed, a mode where you have to kill a player, and then collect their dog tags to earn a point for your team. There's also a new, co-op multiplayer mode, Exo Survival, which pits you against waves of enemies. Both multiplayer modes can be played either in split-screen, or online.
How easy is Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare to pick up and play?
In terms of accessibility, Call of Duty games are usually one of the easiest shooters to pick up and play, but Advanced Warfare is trickier than the games that have come before it. With friend and foe looking very familiar, it can often be tricky to tell the two apart, and while shooting a bad guy won't lead to any punishment, killing a friend will see you being sent back to the last checkpoint with your tail between your legs. The game's "quick time events" are a bit hit and miss too. When an icon pops up on screen, you're expected to press the button quickly before it disappears in order to perform an action (like leap from a bus, or bash through a windscreen), but with the icons being so small and white, they're a bit easy to miss. It's certainly do-able, but there's a learning curve at play here.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare contains strong violence, strong language, and a lot of gore from the start. One of the earliest scenes in the game sees a character get dragged across the floor by their commander - only then do you realise their arm has been severed, as it stays limply behind, covered in blood. Enemies who fall in pools cause the water to cloud with blood, and some cutscenes show medical instruments being inserted or removed from bodies, with some eerily realistic severe burns, and sometimes exposed organs. Melee attacks are equally violent, as you get to watch your character stab another in the neck from a first person perspective.
Bad language is infrequent but strong when it occurs, with b**locks and f**k both featuring, and, of course, should you venture online and play using a headset, the chances are the language you encounter will be equally fruity (although voice chat can be either controlled or blocked altogether through your console's parental controls). On the other hand, there's nothing in the way of sexual content.
Format Reviewed: PC