Black Ops 2 Revolution DLC Review

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2’s first DLC, Revolution, is surprising. Not only is it the first instance that a competitive multiplayer weapon is included its list of features, but it’s also the first Call of Duty DLC to offer four multiplayer maps (plus a new zombie playground), none of which I dislike.

Not to demean Call of Duty DLC, but when it comes to the roster of new maps, it’s usually not that hard to pick and choose favorites. I find myself struggling this time around to do just that. Grind, Hyrdo, Downhill and Mirage all offer unique gameplay experiences while maintaining strong visual appeal.

Grind, a colorful skate park-themed location based on the Venice Beach area in L.A., is a fast-paced, close-quarters map, but with a bit of a twist. Whilst the center of the map promotes that familiar, indoor, CQB action, the outer circle is riddled with half pipes, ramps and jumps. Thing is, everything is curved, meaning that you don’t get that comforting rectangular cover you’re used to. With less traditional CoD-style cover, the outer areas of this map play out more like a Halo game, or any other arena-style shooter. It’s a welcomed breath of fresh air and its gameplay is seemingly turning out to be one of the more popular choices in matchmaking. One small, but annoying gripe I have with Grind while playing Domination is that the A-flag marker, while walking down the right-most lane from the C-flag spawn, obstructs a deadly sniper nest from which you can easily be taken out from. Yeah, the marker disappears if aiming down sight directly at that particular spot, but it’s impossible to keep tabs on it in your peripherals when advancing up that side. A small inconvenience that could easily be fixed.

Personally, I can’t wait to see the crazy community videos of players taking RC-XD’s off of all the jumps and ramps that will be born from this map.

Black Ops 2

War at a Venice Beach skate park

Hydro, while one of the more visually bland maps, provides some very competitive gameplay. There are three main “lanes” which allow for some seriously tactical domination matches. Some of the most intense matches I’ve experienced thus far have taken place on this map. The interactive element is a nice touch, though not necessary for exciting gameplay. Simply keep an ear out for an audio que indicating the rush of water that flows perpendicularly in a tunnel underneath the map, a tunnel used primarily as a flanking route. A walkway over top of the B-flag serves as a good vantage point as well, but one that can be countered thanks to its two entrances. I can see Hyrdro becoming a favorite amongst the competitive crowd.

Mirage is interesting in that it features a triangular Domination flag layout, meaning you won’t get that tug-of-war style of gameplay you might be used to from Call of Duty. The setting is also rather unique: an exotic, sand storm-hit resort that makes for some seriously uneven terrain. The map is circular in that an outer ring encloses an inner circle which can be extremely deadly to traverse, as there is not a whole lot of cover. Unless your skills are sharp, I recommend advancing along the outsides of the map. Trying to capture the B-flag is a b*tch thanks to the two death-balconies on either side. It sits wide open and bare inside and empty pool with absolutely no cover. It requires some serious teamwork to cover and capture, but how often does that happen in “pub” games? Mirage also happens to be this DLC’s largest map, if not one of Black Ops 2’s largest maps in general.


Apparently, the pool is off limits

If tied to an electric chair and absolutely had to choose a favorite here, I would most likely choose Downhill as the most enjoyable map to play on. This map is all about variation. You’ll certainly find some close quarter battles along the cliffside, inside the ski lift area where the gondolas can knock you out cold if not careful. The center lane is sniper valley and also happens to be where the B-flag is located in Domination. While there is not as much cover along the cliff face higher up, the winding paths provide some good flanking routes, but be careful and check your corners. There could be a gunfight around any corner and there’s not much cover to save your ass here. There are also two smaller indoor areas at either end of the map – watch out for campers! I find the overall setting most pleasing, however. Why US Navy SEALS and a group of Mercenaries would engage in combat on a serene ski hill in the French Alps is beyond me, but whatever. It’s a videogame and it’s nice to look at.

Again, none of these maps have made their way to my “avoid” list and probably won’t be any time soon. I’d be more than happy sticking to a DLC-only playlist for days. In this regard, kudos to Treyarch.

The Peacekeeper sub-machine gun DLC weapon is seriously cool. It looks awesome and fits a very particular role nicely. Sitting somewhere in between a SMG and an Assault Rifle, the Peacekeeper can do both long and short range, though it does neither of them amazingly well. It has it’s definite uses without being an over-effective beast machine, something the Call of Duty community was understandably worried about before the launch of Revolution. It’s got a sleek, futuristic look to it with some very workable iron sights and is a very welcomed addition to the arsenal of Black Ops 2’s weapons. It will be interesting to see where Treyarch goes with additional DLC weaponry in future map packs and if they can keep up the same level of balance.

Black Ops 2

The Peacekeeper SMG – here to keep the peace, and pwn sum noobs

The new Zombies content features a hit and miss. The new survival map, Die Rise, is a panic-inducing, joy ride of exploration and discovery. The new game mode Turned didn’t hold my interest very long at all, however.

Turned is an utterly simple game mode that pits three zombie players against one human fighting for survival. Should a Zombie manage to “turn” a human player, he or she will instantly be transformed into that human who must now set up shop in a good, easily defendable corner and blast away at the rather speedy and lively undead. It’s fun and very fast-paced, but it gets old quickly – the sort of mindless fun you might enjoy with a group of friends over tea and biscuits. (That’s what kids do now-a-days, right?) New maps and a greater variation in weaponry would be a welcome improvement. As it stands, Turned feels more like an after-thought.

Die Rise. Now, here, I could spend hours. This Zombie survival map set on a crumbling high rise in the far east adds some serious spice to the rather bland assortment of vanilla Zombie maps (non-DLC maps that came included with the game). There is a lot to discover here and a ton of path choices to consider. Communication and planning is key here, as it can be really easy to get separated and lost from your crew. The verticality and narrow pathways can sometimes make it impossible to link back up if you don’t know where your going or which corridor leads to where. Use the elevators wisely and keep an eye out for weapon and “trample-steam” parts.

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A lone zombie roams the crumbling Die Rise

If Revolution is any indication of the type of content we’ll be receiving from Treyarch during Black Ops 2’s life time, you can take comfort in knowing the season pass may have been a good investment after all. Four new maps, a new weapon, a new zombie map and a new zombie mode is a lot to chew on for one piece of DLC. Of course, only time will actually tell if this sort of quality can be kept up. For now, I’m a happy camper. Well, not an actual camper. Camping is for noobs.

Black Ops 2 Revolution is currently available on the Xbox Live Marketplace and arriving on the PlayStation Network and PC February 28.

For some gameplay videos on all the new DLC maps, including some zombies tips and tricks, be sure to head on over to the official MP1st YouTube channel!

  • PuddingAuxRais1ns

    “Place anti-cod comment here”

    • DaEpikGamur

      “Insert Battlefield is more realistic comment here” “State that I stopped playing CoD at CoD 4”
      “Wonder why nobody likes me”

      • betosobreira

        So you should follow this link ( and do not read CoD news, this section was made for CoD fans.

        • ButteredBread

          He was joking/being sarcastic, “Reeeeooor”……..hand over the head.

    • Thomas

      Dammit, you beat me to the punch on the sarcastic comment…

    • Thatbeastlytaco

      “Place CoD is full of 12 year olds and Battlefield is a mans game comment here” “Place if you run around like a headless chicken you will get 100 plus games” here” I could go days listing all the fangirl comments hating on CoD and still have plenty more left.

      • I can see maturity is very strong amongst most CoD gamers. I guess that’s why most have emblems of a penis in a black person and such.

        • bilybobhoe

          I upgraded to a cum covered stripper, jelly?

        • masada157

          Yes, BF3 players are much more mature. Acting all high and mighty and treating people who play different games like a subhuman race, anf barging in on their discussions to preach about how much better BF3 is than every single other game out there.

          • Sensou-Ookami

            Thanks for putting like that, is really annoying when they feel the need to be “racist” against anyone who plays something other than BF3. Shame on you guys, go post of BF3 threads.

            • Thomas

              I think prejudice is the word you were looking for. Totally agree though.

      • Sensou-Ookami

        Omg, seriously guys, stop the Battlefield vs. CoD talk, you guys are acting like children. Both games are fun, the end, leave it at that.

  • dpg70

    I’m not a huge CoD fan at all, but I’m enjoying these maps and the Peacekeeper is a beast, even though it was just pulled from the original game.

  • Liam

    Next 15 comments:

    Whines about lag

  • Thatbeastlytaco

    Is it safe to say Treyarch>InfinityWard. Oh and fix the lag and nerf quickscoping a bit and this game will be 10x better than it is now.

    • Thomas


    • lag? its the host’s who makes the lag. not treyarch’s fault..

      • Dirtknap

        Nope, incorrect, and its well within the devs powers to mitigate network inconsistencies. Lag comp tends to put the host at a disadvantage, additional features like theatre recording and those dirty split screeners put added strain on the host = more lag for everyone. Typically, those with weaker connections reap the most benefits from lag comp. Throw into the mix issues with a broken/inconsistent in game camera and you have a very confusing and disappointing experience for a significant number of the community.

        However, I do believe Treyarch are hotfixing the netcode like mad, I have noticed significant improvements from a network perspective recently. Still, it would have been nice actually get some acknowledgement on the issues, but you the old saying “don’t mention the war”

        • HighBob

          *cough cough* dedicated server matchmaking on PC *cough cough*

          • Dirtknap

            Imma have to high five you on that one, lol

    • Sensou-Ookami

      Haters and trolls everywhere. Sheeeeesh. Well, I’m looking forward to some fresh maps and a new gun to toy around with.

  • hate being sober

    Everybody below! Haha seriously was thinking of same idea as you guys, but seriously only 5 percent of ppl will agree with David who did a great review and then the 95% of battlefield children will run loose trying to blow up every single cod article. Anyone else agree? Please this is duty leave all other game comments to your own articles..thank you motherfuckers 🙂

  • I’d really have to disagree with you that Mirage is one of the biggest maps in the game. First, even if you measure it from end to end there are quite a few maps that are much larger. Turbine, Cargo, even Downhill are all physically bigger. But if there’s one thing we know about cod, it’s that physical space doesn’t mean dick. What matters is how much of the space actually gets used. Look at Turbine for example, there are massive areas of the map on each end that never see action because they’re just so far out of the way. The only heatmap blips you would ever see there are the hardest of hardcore campers on TDM. Mirage suffers from the same thing; there’s a massive amount of the map that never gets touched in most objectives. Couple this with the fact that it is definitely a medium-sized map to begin with and it actually ends up feeling very claustrophobic. All the action gets packed into the center circle and the two hard choke points at the pool and the bus. In the end it’s actually a pretty small feeling map.

    Also, the triangular domination sites are how every domination map SHOULD be set up. There’s a massive problem with linear domination maps in that they promote camping and spawn trapping and really require no skill besides getting to B first. It’s far to easy to just cap B before the other team then set up camping spots and make smores like a champion. Plus half the time the spawns are so ridiculously broken (even before you count the assholes who spam TIs which only breaks the game further) that a team holding A and B will spawn either on B or between the two while the team holding just C will spawn in the furthest reaches of the map possible. This makes making a comeback virtually impossible and doesn’t lead to any fun or skillful gameplay. Triangular domination points allows a team to break out of getting spawntrapped as they can mount an assault on either point without having 6 kids sitting on a choke point waiting for them. The team with two points has to make a choice between 3 members guarding each site or leaving a lighter defensive and trying to push all three. This gives you skilled, tactical gameplay options instead of the usual “hurr durr I got B first free win kthx”. Circular or triangular domination maps SHOULD BE THE NORM, NOT THE EXCEPTION. That fact that this surprised you is the exact reason I refuse to play that broken gametype until they figure out how to make the maps playable and remove TIs from the game.

    • Dirtknap

      Entertaining and enlightened. I’m defiantly in agreement with the alternate configurations of the flags in dom. All the same, I’m looking forward to this map pack come the 28th and interested to see what else Treyarch has in store for us down the track.

    • You speak the truth. Linear Domination set-ups are still fun and necessary, but we definitely need more circular or triangular set-ups. Like you said, it completely changes the flow.

      If i may bring Battlefield 3 into the conversation, I do like what they did with their version, Conquest Domination, in the Close Quarters DLC. I felt it had a nice flow, though it does sometimes feel like playing ring around the rosie. Either way, variation is good.

      • yeah

        Yeah i think its funny how dice managed to do cod better than cod

        • BF3 is unpolished and pretty frustrating to play on console. On PC it is definitely an excellent shooter. On console, it runs at 30 fps which already puts it in the turdosphere. Mix that in with unresponsive controls (by comparison to cod, which is like butter) and poorly ported versions of the pc maps and cod really is objectively a better console shooter. On pc, however, BF3 is definitely a strong title. But you have to keep in mind that they’re almost different genres for how far apart the two titles are. Cod focuses the action on close quarters, high velocity gameplay while BF3 tends to large scale vehicular gameplay. Yes, cod has some big maps and BF3 has some tiny maps but these are not the norms.

          The reason BF3 has a better flow to its gameplay is because they actually figured out how to do spawns right, something cod continues to fuck up really hard. Instant respawns, “Tactical” Insertions, and inconsistent base spawns all contribute to this. Hell, TIs alone have the capability to completely break any objective gametype because of how easy they are to use and how difficult they are to counter.

          So no, in the end DICE didn’t make a “better cod”. They made their own unique shooter with a completely different focus and feel to the gameplay. It’s actually a little insulting to your beloved BF3 when you continually try to compare the two because it just shows how badly you missed the point of the game you love so much.

          • Oblivion_Lost667

            I agree for the most part, except for the smaller CQB maps not being the norm in BF3, with the TDM and SQD Rush map variations, plus Metro and the CQ expansion, the game’s almost become half CQB and half long range vehicle maps. In all honesty, CQ starts feeling a lot more like COD and less BF after a while. Which isn’t BAD, but it isn’t good either, especially with what COD’s turning into every year. Just my 2 cents.

            • On console I could never get myself to like the CQ on BF3. The controls just feel too sloppy. The reason cod has such good gun combat is that the controls are slippery like a buttered fish on an ice skating rink. BF3 it always feels like your dude is running through mud. And I know bullet drop factors into this, but BF3s hit detection never felt quite right to me. Even in close quarters where bullet drop is negligible it felt like there was always that awkward pause between firing and the hit registering on the other guy. This is most noticeable when you kill a guy and he kills you at the same damn time. If that shit happened in cod there would be so much rage, but apparently when BF3 does it it’s just part of the “realism”.

            • Oblivion_Lost667

              I’m perfectly okay with dying at the same time, in COD when you die your bullets will magically stop simply because you died. BF3 does have a few issues, it’s not exactly the hit detection, it’s more their overall terrible netcode. I say it’s better than COD’s lag comp stuff, but BF3’s netcode is just god awful.

      • CQ was so extraordinarily good. Unfortunately no one plays it on PC because there are no big maps or jets. That said, I really dislike the BF3 community’s preferences. Basically the draw for them is vehicles, flying and horseplay. Whatever happened to focusing on tickets and teamwork?

  • stryker666

    Wondering why they won’t open up Zombie mode to more than 4 players. 7 Zombies and 1 soldier or 20 vs 4 or something like would seem a big win. 3 on 1…just seems really, really limited. Still, varied DLC is nice.

  • MEH

    MEH When is End Game coming out?

  • Saint123q

    For the first time ever, I find myself liking all of the Maps from Revolution. It was really shocking to me..

  • UltraVioletGamer

    I play both games… still like battlefield more…. nobody plays bf3 with me makes me feel sad but when that happens i always troll the shit out of players and make some fun!

  • why BF players come to hate on Cod? ’cause they want BF to be on top of Cod.

  • The game isn’t technically sound when it comes to hit registration. That should be worked out before any content is released, and I feel it should be factored into your review and rating as it may help some people determine the value of the DLC. Personally, until this game is patched for hit registration issues, I find the value of even the most top notch DLC to be worth about half as much.

  • Fix the stupid ass freezing problem I mean the game has been out more than 3 months now! Come on!

  • Tom Edden

    Is it worth getting it for PC? There dosen’t seem like there are many people playing, so is it good value?

  • Bring on the Zombies. The Walking Zombie