Activision and Treyarch has dropped the second downloadable map pack content for Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, titled ‘Uprising’ which can be purchased now for 1200 Microsoft Points (discounted for Season Pass holders). There’s no new weapon DLC as per the first content drop, but fans of the original Black Ops should be excited to learn that the hugely popular ‘Firing Range’ map has been re-imagined as a movie set in this latest expansion alongside “Treyarch’s most terrifying Zombies experience to date” in Mob of the Dead.
The content within the Uprising Map Pack includes: ‘Studio’ – a map that replicates the original Firing Range from the first Black Ops game from Treyarch only this time re-imagined as a movie set. Not just any old movie, but a Hollywood blockbuster set in a futuristic world with Castles, Dinosaurs and a Western as you take a familiar stroll down a very different path. It has been beautifully remade and plays equally as great as the original – in fact, because it looks so damn good now as a movie set with different stages, shark infested waters, battling pirates, and the set of Space Monsters from the Moon 2 – it is way better than the original Cuban Firing Range it once was in 2010. Plenty of hiding spots, alleyways and a favourable map for close range combat – especially great for Domination and HardPoint game modes.
‘Vertigo’ – a map set in the heart of India where the war takes you to the tallest building in the world from a very great height (don’t look down) as the city skyscrapers appear in the distance with the wind whistling in your ears. A very futuristic map with a design that reminds me of Halo 4 and Crysis 3, as the colours of grey and blue dominate the battleground. A mix of both internal and external locations to shoot through as you take some tight corners around a VTOL landing pad. Another great design which doesn’t allow for much hiding in the external locations as you are mostly very exposed. It’s best not to stand still on this map and sniping I am pleased to say would be mostly useless –definitely a non-camping map with impressive verticality scenery. Ideal for Team Deathmatch, Kill Confirmed and Free-for-All. Other modes that require players to group into an area will end up in a bloodbath or ultimately an unfortunate suicidal fall from the roof tops!
‘Magma’ as taken from the official description – this map has high temperature Lava carving through a modern Japanese village that leaves rivers of fiery damage in its wake, providing players with dangerous terrain, compromised cover, and frenetic firefights for survival. I would best describe it as an ideal Zombie map that has been re-worked for traditional multiplayer modes, but remnants of burning lava is scattered on the streets, and around the environments which leaves one wrong step and you burn in a hot fiery death. It’s quite a small confined map, but very deadly complete with a sushi bar and Karaoke Club if you look hard enough in the right places. As with all small to medium sized maps expect to get in harm’s way when openly roaming the streets as this map is more suited to Headquarters and Demolition game modes.
‘Encore’ – is a London based futuristic music festival grounds complete with a rotating London Eye in the background. This map feels as if it pays homage to the original Black Ops map ‘Stadium’ only on a smaller scale. The central stage area with its flashing lights and dance floor provides players with a key vantage point overlooking the close-quarters battle of the surrounding amphitheatre and main tents. Sadly the drums aren’t playable and the Merchandise store is closed – but this small map is sure to be a great addition for playing in Free-for-All mode as there’s not many places to camp and with the majority of the map being external all players are likely to be very visible! Although Encore is graphically the best looking map in the pack – it’s small size doesn’t bode well for any game mode except Capture the Flag and Free-for-All. If Black Ops 2 had its own Face-Off lobbies as per the option within Infinity Ward’s/Sledgehammer Games Modern Warfare 3, this would suit that mode down to the ground.
‘Mob of the Dead’ is said to be the most terrifying Zombies experience to date – well…I’m not sure if it’s the most frightening experience I’ve played, but it looks like it certainly is the most ambitious Zombie playground ever to be developed in the history of Call of Duty Zombies! Set in the grounds of Alcatraz Prison there is an abundance of hallways, cells, multi-level locations and roof tops all waiting to be opened up in this dark, dismal island. Despite a celeb-fest character line-up comprising of Ray Liotta, Michael Madsen, Chazz Palminteri and Joe Pantoliano (if you even know who they are?) I would say that sadly it’s mammoth environmental setting is a let-down because the map just becomes complicated and difficult to navigate. It’s best described as a maze of stairways and halls with a mass of Zombies in chains after your blood; although you can enter the Afterlife and poke about in the spiritual world to shock charge a few electrical circuits – Mob of the Dead feels messy and frustrating to get to grips with, certainly not anywhere near as great as ‘Die Rise’ from the Revolution Map Pack a few weeks ago.
The Black Ops 2 Uprising Map Pack contains four decent multiplayer maps and a rather repetitive Zombie experience with Mob of the Dead, but if you’re after a bunch of new Achievements then you will likely work your balls off to master the scale of Alcatraz in this latest DLC offering. It’s not as revolutionary as the previous DLC since the maps are somewhat smaller, one a reworked map from the original black ops and no weapon DLC – but it does of course offer more variety in the games’ multiplayer which doesn’t disappoint.