Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare Retribution DLC Review
Retribution, the fourth and final DLC map pack of Infinite Warfare, should end the game with a bang. Unfortunately, even though there are some definite highs to this last DLC addition, they just aren’t enough to look past the glaring disappointments within. From a confusing zombies adventure to an underwhelming multiplayer map remake, the vibrancy and frenetic gameplay becomes a bit muddled. What Activision and Infinity Ward get right with multiplayer this time around, seems to be at the expense of the zombies adventure in this final DLC.
In the last DLC I was disappointed with the multiplayer maps, and while these ones definitely feature better designs, well three out of the four anyways, the choice to remake Warhawk from Call of Duty: Ghosts is an interesting one. In addition to this remake, players will see three new maps: Altitude, Carnage, and Depot 22. While there isn’t a whole lot of innovation here, the multiplayer maps within Retribution are colorful, well designed and feature four very different experiences.
Believe me, I loved Warhawk itself as a part of Ghosts, and as the remodeled version of Heartland it is still just as great, however with that said, the map doesn’t play the same way with all of the exo-movement available. And sure, this ability to pop up and kill a camping opponent is sure to be satisfying, but there aren’t a whole lot of places to use this extra movement and I would have loved to see more spots added. On top of this, cosmetically I was expecting a lot more than Infinity Ward did. Heartland looks a bit different, but instead of a complete reskin, it almost looks as if there was a discussion during development where someone said, “It looks good as is, maybe we’ll just some futuristic looks in some main buildings and it will be as good as new,” and everyone else just agreed. This is easily the least colorful map of the bunch.
“While there isn’t a whole lot of innovation here, the multiplayer maps are colorful, well designed and feature four very different experiences.”
Carnage is a great map for those who love to camp or snipe. It is not good for those who like to run and gun so much, as there are pockets of space that allow these previously mentioned players to take advantage of the vulnerabilities in the map. For those of us who like to come in hot, guns a blazing, you might want to take a slower approach, really taking in your surroundings. The more you play this race track wasteland, the more you will notice that this three-lane map is interconnected through little openings, allowing snipers to wait comfortably for their prey to come wall-running past one of these spots. This classic three lane map does nothing to set itself apart from most Call of Duty maps, but it is fun to play, even if you hate being in someone else’s crosshairs for the majority of the game.
Depot 22 really takes advantage of the modified movement, with open spaces to slide through and a bunch of shipping compartments to jump over. This map plays to the strengths exhibited by Infinite Warfare, and gives the word ‘frenzy’ a whole new meaning. It might be a good idea to take a strong assault rifle with you into this three-laned, medium sized map, because it is, without a doubt, made for mid-ranged weapons. With that said, there is a lot of opportunities to get close to your enemies, as well as you fight for the best spots of the map. Who knows, maybe this will even involve wall-running along a moving train.
Altitude is by far my favorite map of the bunch. Set in the air, this shopping mall takes things to new heights, literally. If you love bright and colorful maps, chaotic gameplay and quick routes to flank the enemy, you will feel right at home with Altitude. On top of how well the map is designed, you can’t help but take in the sights, including lush green landscaping and mesmerizing waterfalls along the edge of the map. This actually feels a lot like a map from Absolution, the previous DLC, Turista and that’s a good thing. Thankfully, despite the downsides with Retribution, the multiplayer maps add both enjoyability and replayability to Infinite Warfare.
“Even though the zombies adventure is sure to be fun for those who are hardcore fans, it is definitely not an experience that newbies or those on the fence will enjoy too much.”
This last addition to what has been an amazing zombies experience is a bit disappointing for me, and even though I love that it brings the previous four maps full circle, it just isn’t enough. If you’ve read or heard anything about The Beast From Beyond you would know that this DLC map is bringing forth the alien critters from the twisted take on zombies from Call of Duty: Ghosts, Extinction. I loved this game mode, and was far better at it than with regular status quo zombies, however in the tight confines of this new zombies map, I felt like a fish out of water. This isn’t the same experience I loved back from Ghosts, and due to the small spaces, it is often quite difficult to outmaneuver these aliens, resulting in far too many lives lost.
If you’ve been following me from the first DLC you’ll know I don’t claim to be a master at zombies by any means, and indeed prefer when the maps aren’t too complicated. As a result, I’m actually a bit torn here because while the additions from Extinction add a large amount of difficulty, the processes for getting things done within the map are simple. From needing three easy pieces for a portal bridge, and turning on the power with the find of a robot head, there is nothing to complain about here. If you like the complications though, I’m sure the easter egg is right up your alley. As much as the gameplay is not simple at all, the ‘extra’ work within the map is straightforward. And as I mentioned earlier, this map brings in aspects of previous maps, including cameos from the boss battles, and when you begin to unlock new areas, including the portal, you will find yourself in the very same theater you began your terrifying journey in. The final zombies DLC ties the four other maps together nicely, as if in a present made by Willard Wyler himself.
As much as I loved Extinction and have been waiting for it to make the perfect comeback, this is definitely not the right space for it. Unfortunately, I would have preferred not having to try and dodge these quick little creatures whilst running away from hordes of zombies, and while I can appreciate what Infinity Ward is trying to do here, this last zombies map is underwhelming. While this final zombies adventure does a nice job of tying everything together, and the cut scenes are as great as ever, this is my least favorite of the Infinite Warfare zombies maps because it just simply doesn’t fit well with the previous DLC additions.
Even though the zombies adventure is sure to be fun for those who are hardcore fans, it is definitely not an experience that newbies or those on the fence will enjoy too much. The multiplayer maps are decent and three out of the four play to the strengths many have come to love from Infinite Warfare. Unfortunately, it seems that Retribution continues the downward trend of the Infinite Warfare DLC and the momentum that began with the Sabotage DLC has slowly fizzled out. Although I cannot discredit Infinity Ward or Activision for their good intentions, they simply fail to execute their plan in a really enticing way for veterans and newbies alike here in the final DLC.
*** PS4 code provided by the publisher ***
- Simplicity of zombie map
- Well designed multiplayer maps
- Vibrant and colorful
- Extinction aspects of zombies
- Disappointing end to Infinite Warfare
- Heartland features minimal changes