Black Ops 2 Multiplayer Info Blowout, Live-Streaming Confirmed, Ranking System and Perks Revamped
Want to know what's in store for Black Ops 2's multiplayer? Read on for the info dump!
In addition to the live-stream feature, how perks, class customization, killstreaks and more have also been revamped.
First things up, live-streaming is now confirmed for all platforms. This allows multiplayer matches to be seen live from anyone in the world and will be supported on mobile devices, too.
In relation to live-streaming, players can also use a USB camera to show themselves "picture-in-picture." However, this will require a bandwidth that's good enough to handle this. It's also worth noting that there will be a 15-second or more delay as to prevent players from getting intel on the stream itself...y'know, since this would give those watching it while playing an unfair advantage.
What's impressive here is that the live-stream functionality can all be done with a press of a button. No need for fancy recording equipment or any software to run while you're playing the game.
If live-streaming isn't your thing, Black Ops II will also feature "shoutcasting." Not only can you watch a match in progress, but you can do a running commentary of it in real-time. You can fiddle on which player you want to watch, switch to different positions on the map, present real-time data like scorestreaks on the side window and more.
These are all added to make Black Ops II a viable E-Sports game and if you want to be an E-Sports player, you have to start somewhere, right? Black Ops II will now also support League Play. What this means essentially is that it will place players in a division based on how they play and their current skill/rank level. So, no more joining lobbies where everyone is at a Prestige level while you're only at level 10.
The game's design director David Vonderhaar explained it best, "When I play the game and I win, I have a really good time...I also have a really good time when I almost win. It’s not very fun when I get the shit kicked out of me."
Of course, this skill-based ranking won't be that much use since everybody knows how to "play" Call of Duty, right? Well, you might be surprised to know that even the game's progression and perks system will be getting a major overhaul.
No longer will players be shackled by the three-Perks system that Call of Duty is known for. Now, the team over at Treyarch is implementing an all-new Create-a-Class system that will let players customize their weapons and perks loadout the way they see fit.
Known internally as "Pick 10," this means that every weapon, attachment, or perk costs one of ten points. All your options are laid out in a grid and you can mix and match there.
One good example would be say, equipping an AN-94 Assault Rifle with a a scope, a pistol as a secondary, three perks, a grenade, and an equipment, All in all, this totals eight points, so you have two more points to spend on what you want.
So, let's say you're the type of Call of Duty player that never uses your pistol, you're not forced to pick one. Instead, you can opt not to choose a secondary and allocate that point for another perk. But what if you want two perks from the same group of perks, you might ask? Black Ops II is now also introducing Wildcards. Wildcards are essentially a loadout option that will let you bend the usual loadout "rules" but with a cost, you have to spend a point to "buy" a Wildcard and use that to buy two perks -- which will also cost a point. This ensures that loadouts won't be unbalanced and it will be based on how much you're willing to sacrifice to get a certain perk.
Fortunately, this doesn't apply to perks alone. Other Wildcards will also let you acquire a second primary weapon, or maybe a third weapon attachment. So if you want to rock a pistol-only loadout with a multitude of perks, you can now do so.
Speaking of perks, those have been modified as well. Now, perks no longer "modify" a gun. Sleight of Hand, the perk that allows for faster reloading, is now gone. However, there's a new perk called Fast Hands that let you swap weapons faster; and in conjunction with that, there's also a weapo attachment called Fast Mag that allows faster reloads -- but specific only for the weapon that has it equipped.
Now that we have perks out of the way, another Call of Duty staple is also getting a major overhaul and I'm talking about killstreaks. In Black Ops II, they're now called "Pointstreaks" and not the same as Modern Warfare 3's Assault/Support/Specialist streaks, either.
Pointstreaks is a new unified scoring system that rewards players not just for kills, but for going after objectives, too. Say you're playing a round of Domination, you nabbed a flag, that will net you points, take down an enemye UAV? that also nets you points. Basically, helping your team out to win will earn you points for your pointstreak. Vonderhaar explains it best, "We want to reward players who are helping their team win the game mode,..Not just the game, the game mode."
Even the streak rewards have also been modified. Take the usual Chopper killstreak reward, now you just don't call in a chopper, but you can even instruct the pilot to move if the action is happening on another side of the map. Another example would be Hellstorm missles, you can instruct it to do massive damage to one target, or have it detonate early to cover a bigger range but with less damage.
Lastly, fans who dig Call of Duty's "Prestige" progression will also find something new to the table. Vonderhaar states that Treyarch "wanted to return to some simplicity" to how leveling up works. Black Ops II will now officially have 55 levels and 10 Prestige ranks. Every time you level up, you will get an unlock token that can be used on weapons and gear. Players can unlock the create-a-class loadout at level 4, which will give the player four unlock tokens straight away.
In addition to tokens, there are more stuff left to unlock. So don't expect to unlock everything in one Prestige run. Also of note, Call of Duty Points and it seems Prestige tokens from Modern Warfare 3 won't be returning, too.
So, there you have it. This represents the glut of changes Black Ops II's multiplayer is bringing to the table. Stay tuned for the known and official list of weapons, equipment, perks and pointstreak rewards.
Are you liking what you've read so far? Can Black Ops II be the best Call of Duty multiplayer experience the series has ever seen? I guess we'll know once the game ships on November 13 for the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3.