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Activision event unveils new downloadable content for highly touted Call of Duty: World at War

March 19, 2009

Activision event unveils new downloadable content for highly touted Call of Duty: World at War
By Michael Lafferty

New multiplayer maps, new zombie gameplay featured in DLC pack

Activision scored with Call of Duty: World at War, but on March 13, at Dogpatch Studios in San Francisco, the company made it very clear that it has no intention of resting in the WaW laurels.

Three downloadable maps become available today, adding more terrain for the multiplayer gaming. The maps – Nightfire, Knee Deep and Station - are diverse and allow for more obstacles to negotiate and new vantage points with which to shoot at your enemies, whether in Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag or Free for All modes.

Nightfire takes place in a European city and is a dark place, illuminated only by the burning debris of the city. Knee Deep is a jungle village, with broken fortifications, and jungle encroachment. The third map is an underground train station that have been bombed to a shell of their former self and offers some areas when the city framework above has been pummeled downward into the debris. The three maps pit Axis against Allied teams (well, except for the free for all), whether that configuration involves the Red Army and Nazis or the Japanese Imperial Army versus the Marines.

Call of Duty: World at War Xbox 360 screenshots

The maps are all confined, but that does not mean there are an incredible number of areas to work around behind enemies, with spawn points randomly set and the action fast-paced and challenging. The elements that gamers have come to know and enjoy about CoD multiplayer are all intact, with kill streaks leading to recon planes, artillery and dogs to use to attack the enemy.

The other new element being brought in with the DLC is a new zombie level. The Asylum (the name of the level is actually the German equivalent of ‘asylum’) levels features a different type of zombie – creatures that move much faster. To help try to keep the playing field even, though, the dev team at Treyarch has created some new defense schemes that should give players a fighting chance – like an electrical defense system that has to be triggered and maintained during the waves of assault from the undead. However, that new electric defense grid will not only fry the zombies, but any of the players who get too close to it. Generally, the basic gameplay and objectives remain unchanged.

Still, Activision and dev team are far from done when it comes to continuing to evolve the game. Plans for deeper stat tracking (the game already keeps an incredible amount of stats available for players for view at any time) are in the works.

Call of Duty: World at War Xbox 360 screenshots

The content shown at the event was demonstrated primarily on the 360 for the new multiplayer maps, with several play types launched in the new map schemes. The PS3 was dedicated to the zombie level, and came across as much more vibrant graphically. It might have been the levels/maps themselves and not system oriented. And the zombie level was much more visceral (read that as much bloodier) than the multiplayer maps. Later in the event, several of the 360s were turned over to the zombie level and the PS3 set-ups still were more vibrant and lush, in terms of lighting and environmental texturing.

Information about how the PC content will be handled was not available at the Activision event.

Yes, this content will be available through the Xbox LIVE marketplace and PSNetwork and there will be a fee for it; and yes, you must have the base game to avail yourself of the content. The three main maps are for multiplayer gaming and not part of the campaign.

 

 

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