Going back to Black Ops II … on the wrong system

, | Games


You don’t maintain a 0.46 kill/death ratio in Black Ops II by just logging in from time to time and playing. It takes a certain type of innate skill. 9.77% accuracy with your gun of choice isn’t something that just happens. It takes concentration and nerves of steel to bring wild spraying to bear on your target. Be the bullet, I tell myself. The one that’s going to connect with the dude you just stumbled into and who is now about to kill you. I enter a zen-like state. Time slows. I see all possible outcomes, drawn before me in a luminous web of possibility. Fear me, IKillzU_420. 4.6 times out of ten, I prevail.

Black Ops II is having a double XP weekend. It’s always gratifying to see a double xp tag pop up from time to time during a match. I feel like I’m getting away with something. Like double coupon Tuesday at the store.

My intention was to quickly boot up Black Ops II so it could patch itself after months of inactivity. I meant to get ready for next week’s Uprising add-on, which consists of four news maps and a new zombie mode. But then I thought I’d just check and see what level I was. Then a quick look at my loudouts. Ah, right, that gun with that attachment. Yes, those tactical grenades. Hmm, that perk? What did I think that was going to do? What was Tom Chick thinking last December when he was still playing this? Let’s hop online real quick and take it for a spin.

At which point Xbox Live decides to barf out for several hours. Microsoft’s servers went offline for the Black Ops II double xp weekend, which demonstrates why there’s no way the next Xbox is going to be as always online as some supposed Cassandras are claiming. Because even though I wasn’t able to work on my 0.46 K/D ratio, I was able to poke around at the campaign, checking my high score, considering ways to replay missions for a higher score, or to do the challenges that unlock more stuff, or maybe even to work on a hardened or veteran level playthrough, which would not only improve my scores, but would unlock the achievement. And, perhaps most imporantly, I would beat podcast co-host Jason McMaster’s mission scores, and thereby unlock something more precious than any achievement: gloating rights.

And while I’m still looking forward to Uprising’s new maps and new zombie mode, the overall takeaway for me this weekend is that Black Ops II holds up, even without the DLC (although the last DLC pack includes a skatepark map (pictured), which is the best skateboard-related thing Activision has made in years).

Read the original Black Ops II review here. Uprising will be available on Tuesday for $15 or as the second of four downloads included in the $50 Season Pass.