At ESGS 2016, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare’s multiplayer was available for the public to play, so considering I missed out on the Open Beta, I decided to take advantage of the opportunity to play the game. What comes next is my first impressions.

I picked the Phantom rig, primarily because it has something that resembles a ghillie suit, and secondarily for the Rearguard trait that gives a backshield that protects from flanking attacks. Additionally I felt like giving the good old fashioned quick scope a go, so I set about customizing my weapons. I would say nothing really changed with how you make your weapon loadout, but the new Combat Rig system really changed it up. I think the best way it is that a Rig is akin to a character class, as each Rig has a unique set of skills and traits available to it, both of which are separate from the weapon loadout related perks.

As stated with the Phantom rig, it comes with Rearguardbackshield, but other traits include Marked Target which stops shot enemies from regenerating health for 5 seconds and Heightened Senses for better surrounding enemy perception. There are also Payloads which is class specific abilities like active camo, sensors and a super sniper rifle. Other RIGs have different Payloads and Traits, but I was not able to try them out due to constraints.

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Going into the game, I was presented with a dilemma: I can’t quick-scope. It was not because I cannot aim or anything, it was just not as easy to do as in the last Call of Duty I played which was Modern Warfare 3. It reminded me of the first Modern Warfare  days where quick-scoping was considered a fine art or presentation of skill, so I promptly switched to an assault rifle. I like how the weapon in hand no longer changes what appearance you had, but rather the RIG equipped alters that, but I really like having a backshield to protect my back, so while the option is there to change RIG, I opted not to.

I think using the assault rifle brings me back to the very foundation of the game: the low time to kill, general laser like accuracy of the weapons and whoever shoots first wins mindset. Fast, furious and often involving getting to the flanks of enemies to maximize kills, trademark of Call of Duty’s twitch shooter nature. Still, I returned again to the sniper, hoping to get the sweet skill shots off. Cutting the story short, we won the round, it was Team Deathmatch after all and it is a straight forward mode.

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare’s base experience has not changed over the years. It is still THE easiest game to get into; but with the verticality that the recent games have added along with the new Combat Rig system, there is work added to add more complexity to the game without ruining its pick-up nature. So far I would say it is a good game, it has its bases covered and new features added to keep things fresh. I will look forward to the full release of the game to see what it has to offer.