Sadly, we have come to the end of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’s DLC…but at least it goes out strong. I can honestly say that with each DLC release, the Zombies mode (which I was never really a fan of) has gotten markedly better, and Reckoning is no exception. Without giving away spoilers, Malkovich’s Oz takes center stage in the final chapter…and he’s an absolute riot!
At the beginning of “Descent”, you narrowly survive Oz on the tanker, and escape to Triton, an Atlas base/resort located deep underwater. At that point, the game ends and everyone wins.
Juuuuuuuuuuust kidding. Oz has not only made it to Triton with you, he’s somehow located the control room. This means you’ll be subjected to a whole slew of “challenges” (depending on whether you’ve sought out the easter eggs), as well as randomly teleported to a mini boss battle, where the floor and ceiling are occasionally electrified and/or on fire. Basically, it’s like a terrible game of “the floor is lava” only with hordes of hungry zombies…and John Malkovich mocking you. So yeah, no pressure there.
The Exo-Zombies conclusion is pretty harrowing (as you’d guess) and features a larger-than-life enemy (again), however if you manage to complete the easter eggs this time around, you’ll get to fight a final battle inside the mind of Oz; finish that challenge, and you’ll get to play through the whole shebang again, except in black-and-white and ultra hard.
Insofar as the maps, this setup is designed not only with the grappling hook in mind, but also mosh-pit modes. Honestly, this time around, I had wayyyy more fun playing objective maps, whereas before I’d always default to deathmatch after a couple rounds. Plus, all of the maps seem to be designed with the exo in mind, meaning that you’ll find aerial attacks and strategies to be the norm, as opposed to the more traditional corridor shooting. On the upside, it will also give you a nice “ping” on your enemies, which makes spotting them so much easier than in previous maps–of course, that goes both ways, so use your boosts and air dash wisely!
In addition to being a good mix of indoor and outdoor combat, Overload has the newest and most interesting mechanic in their plasma lamps, which look decorative at first glance. Once the lamps are “active”, shooting them will send glowing tendrils of electricity into the surrounding area. It’s a spiffy addition that adds that little extra “fuck you” to campers…especially in the long straightaway in the center of the map. This map is a fantastic “multi-use” map, as all modes feel equally fun…ESPECIALLY Domination.
Quarantine is probably my second favorite map, simply because it evokes a terrible “aftermath” feel of a formerly safe zone that has been overrun. The specialized scorestreak in this map launches a “cleansing” volley of targeted rockets, which can help even the odds…or clench a victory. Quarantine pairs fantastically with Domination.
Fracture is third favorite, taking place on a giant glacier, complete with scientific testing bungalows, power turbines and plenty of high-low areas to explore. The map also features three distinct “lanes” to traverse, and the scorestreak will trigger an explosion, which sinks one of the “edge” lanes. This map in particular seems custom suited for “Upload” modes.
Swarm is the fourth map, and it takes place in a war torn South Korea, and the scorestreak features a whirling Swarm to help clean up your enemies. Of all the maps, this is the one I dislike the most, simply because it’s riddled with blind corners, which campers have steadily exploited. It’s obnoxious, and given that most of the blind corners exist in tight hallways and corridors, campers with a semi-auto shotgun can clean up with minimal effort. It’s not that it’s a bad map…it’s just one of the more annoying maps to be saddled with.
Still, even with the pithy annoyances of Swarm, Reckoning is one of (if not the) best DLC pack yet for Advanced Warfare. Plus, it’s easily the best Exo-Zombies chapter yet, and ties a nice, neat bow on the whole wacky storyline. I can honestly say, even with minor map stumbles , this entire DLC suite was pretty stellar, and if you love Advanced Warfare like we did, it’s an easy buy. FYI, you’re still able to nab all the DLC packs for $49.99 with the season pass, or piecemeal at $14.99.
As always, the DLC packs are available right now for Xbox, and will be coming to the Sony marketplace and PC on September 3rd. For more information, check out the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Reckoning DLC main page!