Does the Wii U answer the Call of Duty? Find out in our look at Black Ops 2.
Until yesterday there was much speculation as to whether or not Call Of Duty: Black Ops 2 was making its way to the Wii U. So when Activision announced that not only is it coming to the system but that a playable demo was available on the Wii U Preview event floor, as a Call of Duty fan, I was elated.
On the show floor, I got a chance to check out how couch multiplayer works for the system. But before I get into that, lets take a look at how it plays on the Wii U. For starters, from the second I picked up the Wii U GamePad and jumped into a match I felt right at home. In terms of physical controls, the only difference between using a six-axis and a GamePad is the six or so inches of space between your hands. Everything felt right, from button placement (obviously triggers and grenade throws all have the same mapping) to analog controls. In fact, as a mouse and keyboard user, I have to say that the analog sticks on the Wii U GamePad felt especially accurate. Of course the sensitivity of the analog stick is something which is subject to change, but as they had it on the show floor, it felt very free flowing, allowing for greater accuracy. In terms of graphics, this thing looks good. COD is not know exactly known for over the top graphics as is the case with Battlefield 3, but on the Wii U, this will definitely hold up with the 360 and PS3 versions if not surpass them by a tiny margin.
The new feature being touted with this game, is the ability to play couch multiplayer with one player using the TV screen and the other with the Wii U GamePad's screen. I have to admit, I was skeptical… but the second I loaded up a match where I played solely on the GamePad, I was corrected. The game played on the new Wii U controller exactly as it did on the big screen. Granted, the graphics are toned down just a bit, but it plays just as you expect. It really was amazing how little if anything you lost by playing on the GamePad alone.While it wasn't made clear that players have the option to use only the GamePad screen during other game modes such as campaign mode, nothing excites me more than the idea of being able to play the single player campaign or an online match straight from the GamePad while slouched in a comfy chair, not having to be beholden to staring at a TV. One thing I did find is that while playing couch multiplayer and using both the TV and Gamepad respectively as independent screens was that it did seem as if the GamePad's frame rate dropped by maybe 5-10 frames per second, but anyone who is familiar with frame rates can tell you that the difference between 50 and 60 fps is not a big deal at all.
All in all, from what I played, Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 felt like it should have. If you had any doubt that it would play well on the Wii U, don't. If Activision confirms that you can play COD from the GamePad alone in other modes, I have no doubt that this might become the version to have in the eyes of media. Have no question… It's Call of Duty Bro!