5 Ways Call Of Duty Goes Next-Gen With Ghosts
Posted on Monday, August 19 @ 17:10:00 Eastern by Daniel Bischoff
Sound design might seem like the least next-generation thing in a medium that prides itself on graphics technology and frames-per-second, but combined with graphical improvements, Infinity Ward's work on reverb, reactive emitters, and battle chatter is the most readily recognizable step into next-gen tech. When an explosion rattles the fence and geometry behind you, or when a sniper rifle shot sounds different from space-to-space, it definitely has an effect on gameplay.
In one match, I remember hearing an opponent's gunfire move from one space somewhere to my right, to another space behind me, but more importantly, I recognized the effect the environment had on that player's excited spraying as the same effect it had my weapon moments earlier. Being able to recognize that our two SMGs were occupying the same space saved my life when he came hunting for me. Reactive emitters, like the chain-link fence rattling with the force of an explosion, can have the opposite effect too. One grenade blast rocked a car behind me, but I thought for a split second it was actually another enemy mantling the hood to knife me. This inevitably left me open to attack from the grenade-chucker. Having a nice pair of headphones has played a part in elevating the experience for competitive gamers, and that will probably be doubly true for Call of Duty: Ghosts.
The clearest and most visible next-generation graphical improvement in Call of Duty: Ghosts occurs when you bring a sniper rifle up to aim down the sights. The scoped view itself jumps into view and you can see enemies scurrying from sight with crystal clarity, but the rest of your peripheral vision is also rendered, albeit slightly out of focus. Executive Producer Mark Rubin said on stage that this will allow snipers to remain vigilant of their surroundings, but I was probably more distracted by it than anything else.
Every other Call of Duty game blacks out the space around your scope, making it impossible to see enemies running from the left or right. Ultimately, that effect made me hate the sniper class. It made me feel vulnerable and lost, but with Infinity Ward's new dual-render scoping snipers can hole up in the back of the map and watch you weave your way towards them.
We're still waiting to see how many of these features make it to current-gen machines like Xbox 360 and PS3, but Infinity Ward has promised that the steps they've taken into next-gen technology have benefitted the current generation of consoles as well. That fancy dual-render scoping might not make it onto current-gen machines, but even plebeians playing on consoles from 2006 can enjoy Ghosts' map deformation, audio design, and the Call of Duty account service.
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