When I first heard about Call of Duty throwing its hat into the battle royale ring I was honestly not a fan. For quite some time now the appeal of Call of Duty has been on a decline as far as I am considered. There has been some major misses in the franchise as of late and I didn’t think they could pull off a decent battle royale. I admit right now, I was wrong. The crazy part to me is that this game is in beta right now and there are so many things they can improve upon. Knowing this only gives me more hope that it will continue in the right direction.

The first thing that stood out about Call of Duty Blackout is how well it handled. There are no jet packs and you will not be running across walls to attack your opponent. The closet thing they have is the grappling hook and we all know what that does. The combat just feels right but you could certainly tell which players were every year Call of Duty owners. The shooting works great and being able to control your weapon is a plus. The weapons are really cool and having attachments such as scopes, fast mags or grips was a nice touch.

Adding levels of armor did get frustrating for me though just because I could never find that level three armor. There was a moment where another player had level three armor on and to his surprise I emptied a clip on him but before I could reload he found me and took me out. There is a big difference from level 1 to level 3 armor. Don’t deny it, you know it to be true.

They didn’t stop with the great idea of adding attachments to your weapons though. Throughout the game you will see people flying around in helicopters or other players racing down a road in big trucks shooting at each other, it’s a spectacle I promise. My friend and I watched from the comfort of a building while two groups went back and forth in two big trucks before it finally ended in a fiery explosion. You might get that with H1Z1 or PUBG but not to that extent. Now I am a fan of those games as well but the one thing that sets Call of Duty apart is just how well the game works. It’s not clunky feeling at all and if you didn’t know any better you would think you were in a normal team death match.

Another thing I really enjoyed about the game is the map. All these separate zones they have on the map are modeled around past Call of Duty maps. They even have a Nuke Town! I know right, really cool. The terrain, the towns, the empty desolate areas work really well on this map and everything looks great. There is just something about getting your ass shot off and jumping through a window to safety. That is the kind of thing that really gets the adrenaline flowing and increases your excitement about the game.

Now there are some things the game needs to improve on before they release it out of beta. For starters picking up items is a pain in the ass. I don’t know why it doesn’t work well but it’s something they must fix. Another thing is weapon damage. I didn’t get the sense of this gun is more powerful than the next or at least I couldn’t distinguish between them. We certainly need something that helps us know what gun does what damage in order to help us make those critical decisions in combat. One more thing, do away with the grappling hook. It isn’t needed. You can jump over or climb on just about anything and I do not think it’s worth having in the game. I love how you can set up barricades and barbed wire sort of like in Rainbow Six Siege but this is usually last resort kind of stuff. There are other things in the game that basically MOD your character. Which you can choose between all sorts of them at the main screen. All the MOD’s have a time limit so you want to strategize when to use them.

All in all I was pleasantly surprised with this beta and I am definitely looking forward to seeing what direction they end up taking this in. Call of Duty just might have another hit on their hands if done carefully and properly. Honestly I am not the best at these battle royale games. However when you team up with a group of friends you actually feel like you have a chance to win and win we did. I for one hope they do because the days of playing team death match for hours on end is over for this player. Oh and one last piece of advice, watch out for zombies.