Black Ops 2: Revolution DLC ReviewMarch 12, 2013
Black Ops 2’s Revolution DLC pack offers a solid amount of fun new content.
When I reviewed Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 last November, I was extremely impressed with the way Treyarch managed to pull off a meaty campaign, robust multiplayer and a decent Zombies mode all in one package. They continue to offer bang for your buck with the new Revolution DLC pack, which includes a new Zombies map, a new Zombies mode, four new multiplayer maps, and even a pretty great new weapon.
Firstly, the new weapon, the Peacekeeper, is described by Treyarch as “a deadly combination of short and long-range firepower”. Purists were worried that a powerful DLC weapon would effectively break the game, but that turns out to not be the case. If you’ve played the Black Ops 2 multiplayer for any length of time, you’ve probably unlocked a better gun with better upgrades than the Peacekeeper. While it’s a fun new toy to play with, veteran players will probably not be seen using it- it’s more of a clever way to allow noobs to stay alive among the seasoned players. Also, the gun can be picked up on the battlefield even if you don’t own the Revolution DLC. The Peacekeeper has a decent amount of kick to it, so you’ll probably want to attach a stock to it or fire in short bursts.
The new maps vary in terms of quality a bit. Hydro has a neat concept, where (seemingly at random) water will fill up a portion of the map and wash away unsuspecting players. This only happens on a small portion of the map, though. The level also features a decent amount of verticality, and players can take advantage of the upper and lower levels once they’re acclimated to this map.
Downhill is a cool-looking map, taking place on an Alpine ski lodge. This is another map with a bit of a gimmick, as ski lifts can instantly kill you if you’re not careful. Savvy gamers will learn to utilize these as mobile cover. The snow-covered map is a fun change of pace, as no other map, campaign or multiplayer, has a winter theme in Black Ops 2. This map has a solid mix of indoor and outdoor locations, with plenty of natural cover like rocks and trees, to appease all styles of gameplay.
Mirage is a bit hit-or-miss. Featuring a hotel complex that’s been decimated by a sandstorm, this map has constantly shifting winds that make it tough to focus your aim. The visual aesthetic of this map calls to mind the sand-covered Dubai skyscrapers of Spec Ops: The Line, or Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol. Built-up sand dunes make for great defense positions. During my game time in this map I found that most players converge to the emptied swimming pool area, where mostly close-range combat occurs- though there are some good sniping points in this location as well.
Grind is probably my favorite of all the new maps. Taking place on an X-Games-esque Venice Beach skate park, the map features a ton of curves, rails, ramps and other surfaces that really change the way grenades are utilized. While lots of players bounce grenades off standard walls, here you can use the curved ramps to roll them in unique ways. It’s not all outside, though, this map also features a skate shop full of confined corridors where plenty of deaths will occur. It’s tough to find cover, and this level is a nightmare for campers. There’s hardly any good positions for snipers inside, and grenades are effective for crowd control here. I found that players loved to use the motion-sensor explosives all over Grind. I had the best luck with SMGs and assault rifles.
The new Zombies map, Die Rise, takes place in probably the most apocalyptic Call of Duty setting yet. You’ll fight for survival through a crumbling skyscraper, through tight corridors with plenty of holes for zombies to attack through. I found this zombie map to be more in line with those of the original Black Ops than the sequel, and the lack of those damn lava mounds is most welcome. Featuring new enemy types, weapons and catapults to transport players between skyscrapers, it’s a relatively fun (but extremely difficult) new map for Zombies Co-Op. Just be sure to stay close to other players if you want any chance at surviving, as hordes of enemies will spam you in the later levels.
In the new Turned mode, players take turns as both zombies and survivors. Four players spawn into the map as zombies, and the first to find a syringe becomes the first survivor. The other players attempt to kill the survivor, who starts with only a revolver, but gains new weapons after every kill. Earning kills as the survivor nets you points, and whoever has the most points at the end of the match wins. Also, there’s a balance-breaking bonus awarded to the player who happens to be the survivor at the end of the round. It’s a fun game, but I don’t see it becoming much more than a diversion.
Overall, Black Ops 2’s Revolution DLC offers some solid new maps, but I just couldn’t get into the Zombies modes (although to be fair, they never quite held my interest). That said, there is a hell of a lot of content on offer for the $14.99 price point, and if you’re still playing Black Ops 2, Revolution will certainly keep you invested for a while longer.