The campaign is predictable, dumb fun, and the multiplayer is some of Call of Duty's best—but still subject to every existing criticism of CoD.
Advanced Warfare isn't the game to answer those questions. Much like the soldiers that populate its fiction, what strengths it has come from the technology bolted to the surface while what's inside looks more fragile and vulnerable than ever.
Advanced Warfare is faster and more focused than any Call of Duty before it.
Multiplayer feels wonderfully fresh, thanks to the added agility of Exo Suit boosting. Sadly, though, co-op is unimaginative, and the story fails to satisfy when compared to previous installments.
Despite a few pulled punches this is the best Call Of Duty has been in years, and the multiplayer in particular is the most innovative since Modern Warfare began.
A traditional, well-executed string of bombastic set pieces in single-player give way to excellent and varied multiplayer modes that capitalize on the tried-and-true franchise gameplay while adding significant changes in the form of mobility and enhanced customization
Advanced Warfare shows what the series needed most was risk
Sledgehammer Games lays the groundwork for more futuristic Call of Duty games with a comprehensive multiplayer experience and a faulty but stimulating campaign.
A high tech upgrade completely refreshes the tired Call of Duty formula.
Advanced Warfare's increased focus on player mobility makes a huge impact that freshens up the action and, in some ways, makes every other game in the franchise feel obsolete by comparison.
Tasked with leading Call of Duty into the next generation, Sledgehammer Games is off to a cautious start. Advanced Warfare executes the formula competently while adding a handful of bells and whistles like mechs, laser cannons, and double jumps; but Sledgehammer Games seems reluctant to really cut loose and push the setting to its fullest potential, making Advanced Warfare a solid but ultimately unexciting entry in the series.
Call of Duty doesn't just return to its explosive roots here; it manages to create a new metaphor for the American bang-bang shooter consumers who continue to drive sales of both it and other major franchises. Rather than a snake simply requesting players not tread on it, it is the snake eating itself.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare plays it a little too safe with the campaign, but it feels like a real core entry in the series, and will please fans who are jaded after last year's release. While Treyarch is still the king of Call of Duty in my eyes, Sledgehammer Games has shown itself to be more than capable of taking over with its debut entry. Infinity Ward is now the odd man out.
Advanced Warfare is Call of Duty's true starting point for a new generation. The tech enhancements are an important evolution for the franchise, giving the online proceedings a necessary shot in the arm. The campaign is predictable but thrilling with enough exclusive tech tricks and set-pieces to make it a must-play. The co-op can sustain you for multiple hours, and it's hard to imagine playing Call of Duty multiplayer without an Exo-suit ever again. Sledgehammer has found fun in the future, and we can't wait to go back to it.
At the heart of Advanced Warfare is the exoskeleton and all of the possibilities it opens up, transforming the way that you get around amidst the futuristic setting. Yet it delivers on many more levels too, from a compelling story and cast of characters to the graphics and the vast array of options for multiplayer character and loadout customisation. Sledgehammer have shown that there's life in the long-running series yet, and thrown down the gauntlet to Treyarch and Infinity Ward.
If you're a fan of the series, I'd say this is worth picking up. If you're new to the series, this is a good place to start. On the other hand, if you're not into the competitive multiplayer and are coming for the single-player campaign, I'd say wait for a price-drop. If you prefer open-world shooters rather than action-movie, linear campaigns I'd say hold off entirely. Call of Duty is not for you.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare drops its pretense of modern conflict and jumps into full sci-fi futurism, much to the series' benefit.
Overall, the campaign is solid, if uninspiring. It didn't have any of the jawdropping moments of the first Modern Warfare, nor any spectacular set pieces. The shooting works well, you'll blast through it in about 6-8 hours, and then you'll put it away forever. On the single-player front, I'm still waiting for a new Call of Duty 4. Maybe I'm just too old and jaded.
Advanced Warfare puts together the most compelling competitive online multiplayer package the series has seen in years. The same can't be said for campaign or co-op, but does it really matter?
A genuinely compelling single player, coupled with the superb multiplayer means Advanced Warfare does enough to reignite anyone's interest in the series.