Call of Duty: World at War - multiplayer hands-on

Will the shooter maintain online dominance for another year? Sure as hell looks that way...

Selectable stat boosts, or Perks, were one of the greatest additions we experienced last year. And as far as we can tell, nearly all the stand-bys are back with plenty of new additions to streamline your soldier into the perfect murder machine.

Applied Perks can reduce weapon overheats, increase dexterity, and improve tank/turret performance. As for the new: Shades shield your eyes from flashbangs, Flak Jacket keeps pesky ‘nade kills to a minimum, and Satchel Charge is... well, BOOM!

And with the aforementioned new weapons comes new methods of protection. Gas Mask protects from the Tabun nerve gas and there’s a Fire Proof Perk to defend you from nature’s cleanser. Our favorite was probably Second Chance. Similar to Last Stand, fallen players can now be revived by similarly equipped teammates to live to fight another day (round.)

One of the biggest complaints about CoD4’s damn near perfect online experience was the limited number of Create A Class slots. Well, guess what? MOAR! We’re getting more custom slots, so you can craft killers in every color of the rainbow without undoing your hard earned ranking. Plus, we’re told you hardcorers will also get more than slots for Prestige mode this go-round.

Treyarch’s also given private party settings a facelift this time. In an example they provided, an Australian can enact his right to Xenophobia and choose only to play with other Aussies. But you see what they’re getting at.

Best of all, CoD:WaW will allow you to make squad lists entirely of your friends. Good for keeping the n00bs at bay, and probably the closest thing to a clan console owners are going to get. Leaderboards are more accommodating as well, now viewable by each and every mode. Hell, you can even instantly pull up a leaderboard that corresponds to whatever lobby you’re in.

You shouldn’t even have to ask about Free-For-All and Deathmatch. They’re not going anywhere. You’re getting plenty of new ways to play competitively, like Team Deathmatch, Hardcore HQ, Multi-Bombe Search and Destroy and best of all, the triumphant return of Capture the Flag.

But that’s just scratching the surface. Our very favoritest mode lies beyond that of the multiplayer. Onward, dear readers...

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