If you could change one thing about Black Ops 2, what would it be? It's a question we've been asked more than a few times, and something that the team at FPS General has discussed together in the past.
I have been playing Call of Duty titles for years now, and other FPS titles for longer than that. I have also been playing Black Ops 2 since before it was released. I have had plenty some time to sink my teeth into the game. I’m always thinking about the things that irk me, things that would make more sense if they worked in other ways or were replaced by something else, or simply removed from the game. I've put thought into this topic for quite some time and it’s time to get it off my chest.
Before I start the list, a quick note; none of these are ranked in any order, and some of them are much more important to change than others.
1. Spawn Protection
In previous Call of Duty titles there were different versions of spawn protection, allowing you to survive the first few second against explosives. This helped counter the powerful air support in the game. This, by no means however, guaranteed you a free rocket towards that air support. In Modern Warfare 3, they introduced a slightly extended version of this when the round started as well to prevent a grenade landing on you at the start of a game.
I’m not entirely sure the thought process behind this one. Why remove this feature? The only thing I can think of that makes sense to me is that they’re more powerful so that they feel more useful, making you think it’s worthwhile to try for the higher Scorestreaks. If it were up to me, I would add it back in, as well as the timer on how long before you can throw a grenade at the start of the match...it feels a bit long in Black Ops 2.
Keep reading for the rest of Part 1 of the 10 Things We'd Change About Black Ops 2 Multiplayer!
I almost considered breaking this up into multiple changes, but I feel like ultimately only one thing need to be done to fix it all. Knife runners, Ballistic/Combat/Tactical Knives and Panic Knifing have always been an issue in my mind - some may disagree and I can’t say with 100% certainty because we haven’t had a game without these things - but I’d like to think that if these elements of the game were removed, it would make for a much better experience.
The pick 10 system in my mind was supposed to bring balance, so that if you wanted to use the more interesting classes you have to gimp yourself and give up this to do it. But when all you care about is knifing you can actually do the opposite and give yourself a huge advantage.
When it comes to Ballistic Knives, Tactical Knife Attachments, and the Combat Knife there is one huge issue in my mind, and that’s that they recovery time between swings is way too short. Nothing else to it. I can understand the need to make them “better” than the default knife and I know I’m not offering a solution to this problem specifically but there can’t be people running around only knifing, it’s borderline unfair. Not only to the people they kill but, more importantly, to their teammates.
Panic Knifing has been the source of rage for tons of Call of Duty players for quite some time. It extremely unbalanced to allow a one hit kill within a certain radius of your player, it’s a cop out. It removed the skill from the equation and heavily favors connection instead. Again I can understand why it’s there, and it’s a defining feature of the Call of Duty franchise but it simply needs to go. Remove instant knives from the game entirely. If you want this huge advantage in close-quarters fighting, then you should have to pull your knife out in advance or survive long enough to switch to it before having a one hit insta-kill. Also increase the delay after a knife, if you miss then you should be punished, but if this is implemented then the knife should be more reliable than it is now and actually hit people when you swing it.
3. Lag Compensation
I’m no networking specialist but I think I understand the basics of why everyone has taken to this term. When Modern Warfare 3 came out, someone coined the term Lag Compensation and blamed all of their connection woes on it. Since then it’s become everyone's favorite scapegoat. In the end I’m not sure what would fix the connection issues, it’ll never be perfect of course but there are games who have done it much better, a couple of them are in the Call of Duty franchise itself. I would use Modern Warfare 2 as an example. The game was simply spot on with bullet registration. This was probably true with Call of Duty 4 as well, but I haven’t play4r enough of it to be certain.
When the original Black Ops was released and Theater Mode was introduced, I noticed a significant difference. It makes me think that whatever is involved in remembering how to recreate the games you've played is what caused the issue. Obviously we can’t remove such an amazing feature from the game. I don’t have a suggestion for improvement on this problem. I honestly don't know if this even is the issue but I can say that hit registration and connectivity issues have been problematic since the original Black Ops.
4. Explosive Damage
When I first played Call of Duty, I thought explosive damage was quite high, coming from Counter Strike: Source maybe you can understand why I would think that. But it’s been years and I’ve played thousands of hours on Call of Duty titles, so I understand that this is a staple of the franchise. But even within the boundary set by all the Call of Duty titles there are a few things that bug the crap out of me when it comes to some of the explosives, and also how the Flak Jacket Perk interacts with them.
The crossbow bolt explosion can almost never kill a person if they aren't stuck by it. This removes one of the key features of using it, area of denial. Even if you can’t see a sniper in his nest you should be able to at least put pressure on him. They don’t have to be like a frag or semtex grenade, but they really aren't a threat at all if you don't stick your enemy.
RPG rockets are another source of frustration for me, they take forever to fire, they hardly ever go where you point them, take forever and a half to reload and then on top of that they do very little damage. This wouldn't be so bad if they went where you told them to, then you could blame it on aim. Ultimately my issue with the RPG is that when up against Flak Jacket, it is literally impossible to kill someone without the rocket hitting them directly. The weapon itself is inherently hard to do that because if you miss you get no splash damage, save from higher ground.
I would say that the explosive damage/radius of most of the Scorestreaks is decent but there is one that stand out in my mind as overpowered and that’s the Lodestar. I really don’t mind how often it shoots, but I do think that the explosions of the missiles are too big. You should have to pick out the guy trying to shoot you down instead of picking the side of the map you think he might be at. You can clear out an entire enemy team by pointing at the proper spawn point, mix that with the lack of explosive spawn protection and it’s spawn killing.
5. Flak Jacket + Tactical Mask
It is next to impossible to dislodge someone from their headglitch if they are sporting these two perks. Frankly I love to use them, they’re on every class I have when I’m playing objective game modes. But they are far too powerful. Tactical mask effectively negates Flashbangs, Concussions and Shock Charges, they have so little an effect that you're practically unaffected. Flak Jacket saves you from everything that isn't stuck to you or directly underneath your person. And it really isn't hard to move 2 inches to ensure you don’t die from the explosion. I would argue that reducing the effectiveness of both these perks by about 25% would be proper. This would allow you in some cases still allow you to get use out of your tactical and lethal equipment if you placed them well enough.
These are just a few things could be done to improve and balance the multiplayer of Black Ops 2. This is all simply my opinion and I don't expect everyone to follow the same thought process. Stay tuned, I’ll have another 5 issues in the game that bug me and I would like to see fixed or changed.
Be sure to leave a comment letting me know what you think of these topics. I’d like to hear how you guys view these topics, whether you think they’re an issue, if you’d like to see them change or if you think I’m off my rocker. If you have any suggestions about how to fix or change some of these things please let me know.
Thanks for reading!