2017 will go down in gaming history as the year Call of Duty returned to its roots.
That’s right, after what some would say was an unhealthy obsession with gravity-defying boosting and wall-running, the latest installment of the franchise is back to good old boots on the ground.
We sacrificed the glorious sunshine of a British Bank Holiday for the trenches of Pointe Du Hoc to bring you the lowdown on the first weekend of COD WWII’s multiplayer beta.
1) It's going to be a bootiful day
With all those gravity-defying booster packs resigned to the trash compactor, the latest installment of the Call Of Duty franchise has your feet firmly weighed down to terra firma. And it feels great.
The pace of play is still quick enough to appease the Usain Bolters, but slower players hindered by trenchfoot can still make a decent fist of it. The graphics look good - not as slick and polished as Infinity Ward’s, but each map in the beta was a decent size had its own unique feel.
Add HDR to the equation and you should have a whale of a time with that new 4K TV of yours.
2) The new Divisions system works well
The create-a class format of older CODs has been overhauled and replaced with a new system called Divisions.
Each Division (there are five in total) boasts multiple perks mashed together, some of which are unique to that particular division (Division Skills and Division Training) and others which can be used between divisions (Basic Training).
Phantom, for example, forms part of Basic Training and packs quieter movement, no fall damage and the old ghost perk into one package.
Sapper III, though, is unique to the Expeditionary Division and includes extra magazines, immunity from shell shock and tactical equipment and a reduction in damage from explosives.
While we were sad to see the old system retired, the new set-up works well and encourages players to mix it up.
3) Scorestreaks are seriously satisfying
Unleashing a scorestreak should always bring a smile to your face and from what we used on the beta, the majority of streaks hit the spot.
Just the simple theatre of the bomb bay doors opening before you drop a Glide Bomb gets the juices flowing. And, given the amount of bang you’re getting for your buck (650pts in this case), this is one destructive scorestreak that’s going to be a shoe-in for most players.
Higher up the kill chain is the paratrooper perk, where you can drop your own mini squad of troops into the heat of the battle. Four AI-controlled compadres parachute in and (unless they’re shot out of the sky) they’re quite capable of increasing your body count by around four or five kills.
The only perk that needs toughening up before the full release is the recon plane which needs to be tougher - a pea-shooter could bring it down.