We got a chance last night to go hands on with Call of Duty: Black Ops 3’s multiplayer mode at a press event; we were allowed to play for almost an hour and capture footage. Now, we’re here to share our first impressions of the Treyarch’s next title’s brand new Combat Movement system.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 does feature a new ‘chain’ based movement system. Treyarch talked greatly about the fact that it is “chain able” and when fans fully utilize that, the best user experience occurs. But they also made it clear that you do not need to use the new movements to be successful. And with that statement, we do agree. Playing the title, we did not have to use some of the movement features; we were easily able to get around the map and be successful. However, using the movements are fun and brings a new experience to Call of Duty.
The title does feature thrust jumps, but Treyarch clearly emphasized to us that these jumps are nothing like Exos from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare; Dan Bunting, Multiplayer Producer, emphasized that Advanced Warfare’s vision of verticality is not what Treyarch is doing with Black Ops 3.
The thrust jumps in the game aren’t that effective. It doesn’t add full verticality like Advanced Warfare’s movement did. You cannot jump to get on top of any buildings in the maps we played, and you cannot really jump building to building. It’s hard to thrust jump as its limited and has to be controlled effectively by the user. On your HUD, when you start a thrust jump, a “power meter” (it’s the white bar in the center in the feature image) appears on your screen indicating how much thrust you have left for your certain jump. As you start to jump, the meter declines; once it’s out, you cannot thrust jump till the meter fills back up.
We played on the PS4, and to control the jumps, you have to tap and hold X. If you fully hold X, then you go to the highest jump possible, and the power meter is fully used. You can tap X just a bit and jump slightly. It’s all tightly controlled by you. While in the air, you are able to change directions. You can even turn 180 degrees.
The amount you go vertically depends on how much you press the jump button. Speaking of the verticality height, the fullest thrust jump barely reached the height that you can go in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Players in the maps weren’t flying around; boots on the ground was key to success in many situations.
Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 does introduce a new movement ability to Call of Duty with wall running. To get this cleared up, it’s not Titanfall styled running. You cannot start wall running just by jumping near a wall; you have to jump and aim your character’s feet properly to the wall and then you start running. But the kicker is wall running is limited.
Out of the four maps we played, wall running was truly effective only on one map. It’s get to around faster, but it also puts you at a disadvantage at times as you’re exposed in the air. Wall running does allow you to “reverse direction,” meaning if you’re running one way, you can jump around 180 and go right back if the action has changed location. Wall running was not easy to use at first; it takes time to adapt to this feature…you have to be right on the wall in order to start running. You can in fact jump from wall to wall. And yes…many mistakes were made falling out of the map while wall running.
Similar to the Boost Slide from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 features the power slide. On the PS4, you can activate the feature by pressing the O button. Power slide is actually a great movement feature; it lets you get out of action or get near enemies faster.
With the addition of power slide, dolphin dive is gone. As David Vonderhaar said, “RIP Dolphin Dive.” It will be missed.
From what we played, you get the best experience when you chain these movements together. You can go from a power slide straight into a thrust jump then into wall running and get around enemies. You can start a thrust jump but then come down quickly into a power slide if you’re in the middle of fire and mantle through a window.
It’s all connected together and all works so seamlessly. The movement system in Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 does not feel anything like Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. There’s no Exo mechanics at all. The movement system is a fundamental ‘evolution’ of Black Ops 2’s movement system. It’s fluid, nice and it sort of feels like the next step for Black Ops.
To be completely honest, I could not figure out how to use the entire movement system at first, and I played my first couple of games as if it was all boots on the ground. The match was completely enjoyable; you are not left out of any battles and players aren’t flying over your head. Any play style really does work with the map design in Black Ops 3.
By the way, sprint is unlimited in Black Ops 3 multiplayer.
And with all of these new movements, Treyarch is making something clear: the game is fast paced, and it’s all about guns up action. During every movement, you can fire your weapon. Your character is always ready with guns up.
Have any questions on the new movement? Let us know in the comments and we’ll answer soon!