A Call of Duty World at War Weekend

December 15, 2008

Last week, I stopped by the local Best Buy to pick up Call of Duty: World at War (CoDWaW) for the PC.  The latest installment in the Call of Duty (CoD) franchise takes us back into the war-filled years of World War II (WWII).  Personally, I am a fan of the WWII timeframe, so I had to pick this up.

Don’t get me wrong, this is nothing inherently bad about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (CoDMW), I just relate better to the “good ol’ days of war”.  I think it has a lot to do with fond memories of playing Call of Duty 2, or Return to Castle Wolfenstein from my college years.

Anyhoo, one of the main draws of getting CoDWaW was the ability to do a multiplayer co-op campaign.  However, this was short lived as my wife and I tried to do a campaign through our Local Area Network (LAN), it was unbearable. Our framerates were like under 20 frames per second (fps) and mine dropped down to <10 fps, since I was hosting the game. Oh well.

The other big draw to the game was engaging in the RPG-like (role playing) element of character customization. Basically, you earn experience points (xp) from completing challenges or taking out enemy foes. Some of the in-game challenges involve things like plunging to your demise from a 30ft cliff, to taking out 2 foes with a single grenade, etc. As you earn xp, you level up and unlock additional weapons and perks, and other fun abilities.

However, after playing this weekend for maybe 4-5 hours, I hit the max level cap of 65!  This is very strange as in the previous CoDMW, it could takes weeks to hit the level cap. At first, I thought the increased leveling was due to playing on a highly populated free-for-all server, but then I noticed the xp reward for each kill was roughly 1,000 xp, very different from the normal 5-10 xp!  I guess some servers are setup for extremely fast power leveling.

While I was a bit put-off by this revelation, I continued to play on the server anyways until I hit max level. Oops… 😉 Anyhoo, I soon noticed being max level didn’t really detract much from the enjoyment of the game. Sure, with max level you can have more perks or nifty scopes added to your gun, a headshot from a level 1 newbie will still take you in one shot. Plus, you still need to unlock gun features via completing challenges, so there is still some form of progress on that front.

One of the most fun activities in the game is stabbing someone with your knife. I know, it sound very gruesome and violent, but the sound it makes and knowing you were able to sneak up behind someone to slice them down is just too much fun. I must admit, my wife has taken me out more than a couple of times through this method. She has much more patience than I do, as I just tend to mow people down with my gun.

Overall, it’s a fun game and both my wife and I are having a blast playing online. One of the hardest things about the game is finding that right server to play on, so be sure to add good servers to your favorites. 


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