Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies Review

Is Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies any good?

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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies review
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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies Review

Is Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies any good?

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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies review
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We rate Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies a 9/10

9/10

Quick Summary

This year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War took the Zombies game mode and replaced the focus on what matters, the fun. It seems Call of Duty Zombies has been getting considerably more and more complicated over the years, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War put an end to that cycle by simplifying the game, adding the features the community has asked for, whilst removing the bloated, over-complicated features no one really enjoyed. Despite having just one map at launch, it’s an amazing map which sets a high standard for the future maps to come.

Pros

  • Die Maschine has been designed very well
  • New exfil option is a great addition
  • Aetherium Crystal upgrade system is amazing
  • Starting with your loadout is a welcomed change

Cons

  • Just one map available at launch
  • Most people prefer the old points system

Rating

What is Call of Duty?

Call of Duty is a first-person shooter game franchise that started out in 2003. The Call of Duty game franchise has seen games set during world wars, modern times, futuristic times, and even in outer space. The first Call of Duty game was released back in 2003, and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War was released in 2020 and is the 17th Call of Duty instalment.

For all Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War reviews, please see below:

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is the 17th instalment in the Call of Duty game franchise and was released on November 13, 2020. The game was released on Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and PC, allowing for cross-platform play across all platforms. This year’s Call of Duty title was developed by Treyarch and published by Activision.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies review

Over the years, Call of Duty Zombies have become a signature mode, especially for the Call of Duty: Black Ops series. When the Zombies mode was first introduced in Call of Duty: World at War, all the way back in 2008, no one could’ve expected the Zombies mode to grow as big as it is today.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War zombies
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies - Credit: Activision

Call of Duty Zombies is a fun, fast-paced zombie survival mode packed with secrets and puzzles to uncover and solve. At its core, the objective is to survive as many rounds as you can, with the higher rounds progressively getting more and more difficult. In order to survive, you will need to kill every zombie in order for the next wave to start, by killing these Zombies, you will earn points. These points are the in-game currency which you can use to buy weapons, buy perks, open doors, and much much more.

With this year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, it seems most of the creative energy went into reinventing this year’s Zombies mode by getting rid of the over-complicated features, keeping the features that have worked well in the past, all whilst adding new, innovative and exciting features, ensuring this year’s Zombies experience feels better than ever.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombie bosses
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies - Credit: Activision

First of all, one of the biggest changes with Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies has been the perks. In previous Call of Duty Zombies games, we’re used to being limited to just four perks at a time, with the perks not being able to be upgraded to different tiers. However, this year’s Call of Duty Zombies reworked how the perks work. One of the most community-praised changes is that you are no longer limited to just four perks at once, you can buy as many as you like. The other change made to the perks is that they are now permanently upgradable to three different tiers using Aetherium Crystals. Below are all of the perks currently available at launch.

Jugger-nog

Jugger-nog increases your maximum health by 50. The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Jugger-nog Tier 1: Reduce status effect durations by 50%.
  • Jugger-nog Tier 2: Armor Plates replenish 25% additional Armor.
  • Jugger-nog Tier 3: Increase maximum health by 100 (total of 250 hp)

Speed Cola

Speed Cola increases your reload speed by 15%. The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Speed Cola Tier 1: Swap weapons faster.
  • Speed Cola Tier 2: Field Upgrades recharge 20% faster.
  • Speed Cola Tier 3: Increase reload speed by 30%.

Quick Revive

Quick Revive reduces the time it takes to regenerate to full health by 50%, as well as reducing the time it takes to revive an ally by 50%. The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Quick Revive Tier 1: Downed crawl speed is increased by 100%.
  • Quick Revive Tier 2: Reduce the delay before health starts regenerating by 50%.
  • Quick Revive Tier 3: Reviving an ally will also heal you to full health.

Stamin-Up

Stamin-Up increases run and sprint speed. The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Stamin-Up Tier 1: Increase backpedal speed.
  • Stamin-Up Tier 2: Immunity to fall damage.
  • Stamin-Up Tier 3: Walk faster while aiming down sights.

Elemental Pop

Elemental Pop gives every bullet has a small chance to apply a random base Ammo Mod effect. The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Elemental Pop Tier 1: Equipment damage also has a small chance to apply a random base Ammo Mod effect.
  • Elemental Pop Tier 2: Reduce Ammo Mod cooldowns by 20%.
  • Elemental Pop Tier 3: When random Ammo Mod is applied it uses the Ammo Mod’s current Skill Tier instead of the base.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies Elemental Pop perk
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies Elemental Pop perk - Credit: Activision

Deadshot Daiquiri

Deadshot Daiquiri allows aiming down sight to focus on enemy critical location, as well as removing scope sway. The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Deadshot Daiquiri Tier 1: Deal 100% extra critical damage if an enemy is at full health.
  • Deadshot Daiquiri Tier 2: Increase damage against armor pieces by 50%.
  • Deadshot Daiquiri Tier 3: Reduce hip-fire spread.

What are Aetherium Crystals in Zombies?

Aetherium Crystals are the main form of currency in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies. Aetherium Crystals are used to unlock permanent upgrades for Perks, Field Upgrades, Ammo Mods, and Weapon Classes. There are two ways to earn Aetherium Crystals in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies, surviving until milestone rounds and by successful extraction. If you choose to earn Aetherium Crystals by surviving to round milestones, here is a helpful list to give you an idea of how many Aetherium Crystals you’ll be earning:

  • Surviving until rounds 10, 15, 20, and 25 will earn you 1 Aetherium Crystal.
  • Surviving until rounds 30 and 35 will earn you 2 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until rounds 40 and 45 will earn you 3 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until rounds 50 and 55 will earn you 4 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until rounds 60 and 65 will earn you 5 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until rounds 70 and 75 will earn you 6 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until rounds 80 and 85 will earn you 7 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until rounds 90 and 95 will earn you 8 Aetherium Crystals.
  • Surviving until round 100 and every five rounds after that will earn you 9 Aetherium Crystals.

Another big change with Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies is the new weapon rarity system. Each weapon will now come in one of the following rarity tiers, start from Common, Uncommon, Rare, Epic, and Legendary, with the higher level rarities dealing more damage. As well as this, you can now pack-a-punch your weapons three times, with each tier making your weapon more and more powerful.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies - Credit: Activision

On top of this, you can also upgrade weapon damage using salvage, something that’s occasionally dropped by zombies after you kill them. Not only this, but you can also add elemental Ammo Mods to your weapons. There are currently four different elemental Ammo Mods that you can choose from, read more about these below.

Napalm Burst

Bullets deal fire damage, each bullet has a chance to apply a burn effect on normal enemies, dealing 10% of their maximum health in fire damage over 5 seconds. (3-second cooldown) The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Napalm Burst Tier 1: Initial burn effect deals 5% of enemy maximum health in fire damage.
  • Napalm Burst Tier 2: Increase burn duration to 10 seconds.
  • Napalm Burst Tier 3: Double burn effect damage.

Dead Wire

Bullets deal electronic damage, Each bullet has a chance to stun normal enemies for 2 seconds. (15 second cooldown) The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Dead Wire Tier 1: Stunned enemies generate an electric field dealing electric damage to self and nearby enemies.
  • Dead Wire Tier 2: Increase stun duration to 4 seconds.
  • Dead Wire Tier 3: Double the electric field damage.

Cryofreeze

Bullets deal frost damage. Each bullet has a chance to slow normal enemies by 30% of their run speed for 3 seconds. (3-second cooldown) The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Cryofreeze Tier 1: Slowed enemies take 25% more damage.
  • Cryofreeze Tier 2: Slowed enemy duration increased to 5 seconds.
  • Cryofreeze Tier 3: Slowed enemy speed decreased to 50%.

Brain Rot

Bullets deal with toxic damage. Each bullet has a chance to turn a normal enemy to an ally for 15 seconds before dying. (40-second cooldown) The following tiers can be upgraded with Aetherium Crystals, each tier will cost an additional Aetherium Crystal to upgrade.

  • Brain Rot Tier 1: Turned enemy explodes on death-dealing toxic damage.
  • Brain Rot Tier 2: Increase turned duration to 20 seconds.
  • Brain Rot Tier 3: Turned enemy damage is doubled.

Another change that we’ve never seen before in Call of Duty Zombies is that you can now start off with your loadouts from multiplayer. This means that instead of starting with a pistol like in previous Call of Duty games, you can now start off with your favourite custom-made weapons, fitted with all of your favourite attachments. These loadout classes will start off at a low level, but you can always upgrade them in each game. What’s even better is that Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War has cross-progression, meaning your rank and any guns you level up in Zombies will also level up in multiplayer, and visa versa.

Perhaps the biggest new addition to this year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies is the option to exfil. After you survive the first 10 rounds, you’ll be given the option to call in a chopper to exfil you and your team. If you don’t exfil now, you’ll then get the option to exfil every five rounds. The extraction option is a high risk but high reward scenario. If you manage to exfil successfully, you’ll receive a bonus, if you fail the exfil, you’ll die and receive no bonus. The longer you survive until, the more bonus rewards you’ll be able to receive.

And finally, the last major feature added to this year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies mode are the Field Upgrades. You can think of Field Upgrades as a kind of special ability that you can only use every so often to give yourself a little boost or to help you get out of tough situations. The five Field Upgrades available at launch are:

  • Frost Blast: Create a frigid blast of wind that deals frost damage and slows enemies caught inside of it. Slowed enemies take additional damage.
  • Healing Aura: Summon beams of energy down on yourself and allies to instantly heal to full health.
  • Energy Mine: Create a mine of pure energy that detonates on proximity of enemies, dealing explosive damage.
  • Ring of Fire: Create a ring of ethereal fire that boosts damage for you and allies. Normal enemies who enter gain a burning effect that deals fire damage. Lasts 15 seconds.
  • Aether Shroud: Phase into the Dark Aether for 5 seconds becoming hidden from enemy detection.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies review
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies - Credit: Activision

One of the biggest disappointments of this year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies mode is the lack of maps available at launch. Usually, we’re used to seeing at least two maps at launch, however, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War was released with only one Zombies map, Die Maschine. For comparison, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 was released with four Zombies maps available to play at release.

Die Maschine (German for The Machine) builds on from the original Nacht Der Untoten (German for Night of the Undead) map, the first-ever Zombies map from Call of Duty: World at War, released back in 2008. Die Maschine expands the original Nacht Der Untoten building into a much larger, multi-level map packed full of secrets. Despite this being the only map at launch, it’s without a doubt a very good map and sets the bar high for future maps.

If you’ve played previous Call of Duty games, you’ll know that Call of Duty usually release 4 paid DLC packs that players can buy to unlock new content for the game (both Zombies and multiplayer). However, this year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War plans to provide free updates with new content over time, expectedly with the release of each new season in the Battle Pass.

Beside the main Zombies mode, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War also has two smaller Zombies modes, Dead Ops Arcade and Zombies Onslaught. Dead Ops Arcade is a twin-stick top-down shooter where your goal is to survive as long as you can against waves of increasingly difficult zombies, just like the main Zombies mode. As well as being a top-down shooter, it also differs in the sense that you have unlimited ammo and a number of weapons and power-ups appear throughout the arcade game to assist you.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Dead Ops Arcade
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies Dead Ops Arcade - Credit: Activision

The new Zombies Onslaught mode in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is a PlayStation exclusive mode until xx. Zombies Onslaught is a two-person, fast-paced co-op zombie survival experience where players will have to fight off zombies in a limited area across Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War’s multiplayer maps. The playable area will slowly move around the map, and the longer you survive, the faster and more deadly the zombies become.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies review: Pricing

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War was released on November 13, 2020. At release, prices started from £59.99 in the UK and $59.99 in the US. Below are some of the best deals from Amazon. If you would like to purchase this game for Windows, you will need to purchase the game from Blizzard.

Quick Answers

How much does Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War cost?

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War was released on November 13, 2020. At release, prices started from £59.99 in the UK and $59.99 in the US.

Is Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War good?

This year's Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War has taken many steps in the right direction. The campaign mode is easily one of the best yet, bringing one of the most stunning, immensely creative, and deeply immersive campaign experiences to date. The game also shines in its multiplayer mode as well, with great gunplay, and a smooth and responsive experience throughout. This year's multiplayer maps have also seen a great improvement. Although these two modes are brilliant, the Zombies mode is where the game stands out, bringing the main focus of the mode back to having fun. This year's Zombies mode brings a range of innovative new features you're sure to fall in love with.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Zombies review: Conclusion

Overall, this year’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War took the Zombies game mode and replaced the focus on what matters, the fun. It seems Call of Duty Zombies has been getting considerably more and more complicated over the years, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War put an end to that cycle by simplifying the game, adding the features the community has asked for, whilst removing the bloated, over-complicated features no one really enjoyed. Despite having just one map at launch, it’s an amazing map which sets a high standard for the future maps to come. It’s great to see Zombies heading back in the right direction, and we highly recommend it.

Rating

Visually Reviewed Rated 9

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