CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS 2 Multiplayer Review

They say hindsight is a wonderful thing – and what I’m really trying to say here is that this review of Call of Duty: Black Ops 2‘s multiplayer is probably a little late. The game’s been out for three weeks now – enough for the usual Call of Duty fan cycle of playing the game, declaring it God’s gift to man, and then saying it’s rubbish and the last one was a modern classic to take place in many quarters. And yes, this review was delayed because of other circumstances – but now’s a better time to do it anyway, now I’ve tried out most of the game modes. So, for the first of my three-part Black Ops 2 review, I’ll be putting the game’s multiplayer under my microscope.


Like many other aspects of the game, Modern Warfare 3‘s multiplayer maps probably were given a little too much stick, but they still were a bit too big, a bit too boring, and a bit too generic for the most part. As an sub-machine gun user, I’m a fan of the maps that give you plenty of tight corridors and corners for close quarters showdowns, rather than the large, expansive sniper-dominated maps that characterized Modern Warfare 3 – and Black Ops 2 does not disappoint. It’s full of tight corners and small rooms for sub-machine/assault rifle/shotgun users, with little concession to the sniper. Sure, quick-scoping has returned and snipers still do well, but they don’t dominate anymore.

My favourite maps at the moment are Hijacked, Plaza, pre-order bonus Nuketown 2025 and Express – but to be honest, I like most of the maps. Slums isn’t particularly easy on the eye, and Overflow borrows too much from Modern Warfare 3, but I’ve rarely left a lobby if a certain map comes up – which brings us to map rotation, which is a bit crap. Hijacked doesn’t feel quite as special now it pops up all the time, maps often come up twice in a row, and it always seems to avoid my favourite, Plaza, and in moshpit playlists, where the game mode varies, you often get the same mode twice.


Black Ops 2 provides the most comprehensive list of game modes in a Call of Duty game… well, ever. Staple modes like Free-for-All (and its usual annoying mix of snipers and people who always aim for the back), Team Deathmatch, Domination, Capture the Flag, Search and Destroy and more return, and they’re as polished as ever. Wager Matches from Black Ops return (or Party Games, as they are called here), with Sticks and Stones being a highlight, but they’re all a hoot, if a bit short on XP bonuses. New game mode Multi-Team is a little bit of a misfire, with shot-in-the-back kill and snipers dominating, but you can’t have everything, can you? However, other new mode Hardpoint is a barrel of fun, with hectic games uninterrupted by pesky spawn delays and blessed with the chance to rack up massive scorestreaks – so it’s not all bad for the new modes. 


The new loadout system, Pick Ten, is one of Black Ops 2′s greatest successes. Gone is the on-rails, compulsory loadouts of games past (a primary weapon, a secondary weapon, a lethal weapon, a tactical, three perks and a death-streak – and in is complete freedom over your custom class. You can have two primary weapons, thanks to two Wildcards, which allow you to have two Perk ones, two lethals, etc. It’s a fresh and new way to make your class, and ensures that every class can be as unique as you like. You can even go all-out nina with a knife, cloaking perks like Dead Silence, plenty of other perks and no primary weapons, if that’s your thing.


League Play, which puts you in lobbies of an equal standard and places you into a league, is good fun, with a chance to escape from people who have supernaturally good aim and too much time on their hands. It’s a mode that Treyarch are still working on – they launched the first season  – at the time of writing – today. The Emblem Editor, which gives you a ton of shapes and lets you make an emblem, is a nice new addition, even if I’ve been slightly scarred by some people’s bizarre imaginations, and Elite, Call of Duty‘s stat-tracking service that costed a slightly iffy £30 in Modern Warfare 3, is free of charge now, so you can go nuts looking at your stats, if you like. And finally, Prestiging has become easier, with just fifty-five levels required to Prestige (as opposed to the mammoth 80 levels of before), so even people like me will prestige a few times.

So, that’s it for multiplayer, but my review of Zombies mode and its bus-hopping adventures will be up on Saturday 8 December.


S#!T Talking Central

  • RyanGahl

    so, you don’t like getting shot in the back (are they supposed to not shoot you if you’re not facing them?), or when people anticipate that you’re coming around a corner and kill you by smartly firing right before you show up? So, you don’t enjoy playing against people who are trying to win. Got it.

    • Louis Rabinowitz

      I don’t like them, but I don’t hate them either – they just annoy me a little when they happen. I’ve edited it now to clarify.

  • Sam

    This is the worst cod review I ever read. You obviously don’t know anything about elite gaming experience. All bo2 maps suck full of camping spots and too cluttered, graphics are terrible , several logical flaws .. Example- you are put in a lobby where ur team is being demolished. You back out without shot fired at you or firing a shot then it shouldn’t affect ur win:lose ratio but it does.

    Game is extremely laggy most times and doesn’t tell user the ping time . I can go on and on . If you are reviewing a game review it like a passionate gamer and not like a noob which is what ur review sounds like. I don’t care about reviews in general but this review was so outrageous I couldn’t shut up

    • steve from dagenham essex

      Is shit hopping to get money back lol

    • tim

      exactly… black ops 1 is untouchable to black ops 2. FULL of camping, and the respawns are ass. this game is a joke, with the maps being like modernwarfare 3+black ops hyberbaby maps. the shooting also resembles modern warfare 3, theres no recoil, takes no skill at all. they shouldve just stayed original and stuck to everything they had in black ops 1.

    • wes

      Well you should shut up. You’re a moron.

  • Charles

    Worst COD YET. DIe way too quickly, very fast game JUST LIKE MW3, nothing like the original Black Ops. People leaving the game on ps3 quickly.

  • Jp

    I have to agree with Sam. Brutal connection issues. Specially for a multi-billion company. Issues that so far have not been fixed. Nothing worst than having ur win streak clear do to your connection being interrupted.

    I’ve been playing call of duty games since mw2. So far black ops 2 is the only one that I don’t like.

  • Aggrevated@COD

    This game is truly GARBAGE!! The worst about I is that we are brainwashed into buying these games every year. Us “the consumer” need to put a stop to it, but we all need to join in. one person cant do it alone. We need to stop buying this garbage and let them know the consumer is the boss.

  • Aggrevated@COD

    Not only do we have to pay the $65.00, but now we,,re forced to pay an additional $50 for map packs. Everyone is getting ripped off but just too ignorant to know it. At least for me, this will be the last COD I ever buy.

    I have found a new hate for COD now

  • tony

    Exactly as said below, all these black ops 2 bullshit maps include of are head glitching, camping, and lag. It never fails to turn a corner only to be shot from a kid head glitching in the same spot he has been all game. The maps are shit period, spawn system has taken “garbage” to a whole new level, and wtf is up with getting one shot half the time? if i wanted to play hardcore i would. i got one shot by a pistol three times in one match, that is fucking stupid. and the headshot registration in this game blows. this is by far the worst call of duty yet. seems like the faggot developers reaalllllyyyy took their time with this one.

  • the dude

    worst call of duty to date Treyarch ruined this game!

  • bo2sukballz

    this game sucked donkey asssssssssssssssssssss!!!!! the hitmarkers r outrageous to many fucking campers in the fuckin game and this whit can ride on my ddddiiiicccccckkkkkk….. waste of fucken 60 dollars save ur whit for a game that’s actually worth it….

  • wes

    Sounds like a bunch of whiney bitches need to pull their tampons out and learn how to play. I’ve never seen a bigger group of sniviling whiney loser douche bags.

  • Kevin G

    Check out my youtube video of why I think Call of Duty Black Ops 2 is the worst CoD yet.

  • David Lee

    if you think call of duty is a bull shit, then why would you buy and try it out? isn’t that stupid :) And if you think it’s waste of money then you can also return it to the store.

  • Stuart

    Personally i’ve completely given up on this game. It seems absolutely incredible to me that they can make it so bad; i haven’t played it for about a month. I lost track of just how many gunfights i lost that i know i should’ve won. I seem to be able to put half a clip into someone, only for them to turn around and kill me with two or three bullets. I really wanted to give the game a chance but i finally gave up. I went from a 2.5 kd in MW3 to a 1.5 kd in BO2, simply because i couldn’t kill people. Not only that, but for a game that was supposed to discourage campers by nerfing ghost, there a hell of a lot of boxes etc to head glitch and camp behind. And to cap it all off they introduce skill based matchmaking in public lobbies. WTF?!!? What’s the point in having skill based playlists if you force it on people in all games anyway. MW3 may have had its problems, but this game isn’t even fun. Its actually stressful. I’ve even started playing BO1 again and its really enjoyable. Ironically after all the winging about ghost campers in BO1, i’ve hardly come across any. Perhaps they’re all camping on BO2 instead …

  • blackops2sucks

    black ops 2 is the worst game ever made.. im a call of duty/ black ops fan but i honestly want my money back from the creators of this game… the maps suck, the gun damage suck, and the connection is horrible.. this game is all around garbage and i want my money back