- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 5, 2015

One of the premiere first-person shooting experiences ever created returns with perhaps its biggest and most well-rounded package in its five-year history to plunge gamers into a violent and explosive universe.

Call of Duty: Black Ops III (Activision and Treyarch, Rated Mature, $59.99) first features a campaign (solo or up to four players co-operatively) taking new warriors into a “Terminator”-like world of 2065 where military robotics transform humans into near cyborgs as they engage in cold war, the blockbuster-style conflict stars the voices and likenesses of Christopher Meloni as John Taylor and Katee Sackhoff as Sarah Hall.

Of course, the staple of COD are robust multiplayer matches. They return with 12 game modes, a dozen maps (all hail Nuk3town), familiar weapons loadouts and a new group of nine soldier specialists to choose from. Each has with a unique personality and weapons expertise (from a bouncing grenade launcher to an arm sporting a quad-barreled minigun).

Finally, and best of all, a new zombies adventure called “Shadows of Evil” takes up to a quartet of players into a 1940s noirish Morg City dominated by an H.P. Lovecraftian mythos. Starring the voices and likenesses of Ron Perlman, Heather Graham, Jeff Goldblum and Neal McDonough, the story also co-stars witches, feisty undead, three-headed monsters and a giant Gateworm.  

Action-enhancing gadgets or extras: Scuf Gaming offers the customizable Cadillac of wireless controllers with its Infinity 1 (starting at $119.99, 2 AA batteries included) for the Xbox One console.

Built with professional gamers in mind but easily appreciated by the anxious, gift-receiving amateur, the device offers interchangeable thumbsticks (six size options); multi-textured grips (rubber–like or military plastic grade); a full rotating control disc (for the digital D-pad); and uses a new bank of AXE paddles underneath the controller (programmed to the four face buttons with electro-magnetic, on the fly remapping capabilities) for ultimate comfort and flexibility.


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Fifty color choices are available for the Infinity 1 ranging from Hulk green to Digital Camo purple and Anodized gold and gift-givers should also consider purchasing a hard case ($12.95) to protect the new investment.

However, specific to “Call Of Duty,” the orange-and-black Zombie print ($159.99 includes 4 AXE paddles) is most appropriate to complement some of the action with images of the undead staring back at the gamer and even a skull added to the glowing sync button.

Having always found the basic Xbox One controller to feel a bit rough around the edges and kind of cheaply made, the Infinity 1 confirms the adage of “you get what you pay for,” with taking Microsoft’s core design and adding a welcomed level of refinement of durability and customization.

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