Activison Call of Duty: Black Ops 4

Last updated date: June 17, 2019

DWYM Score
8.9

Why Trust The DWYM Score?

DWYM is your trusted product review source. Along with our in-house experts, our team analyzes thousands of product reviews from the most trusted websites. We then create one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in the category.

We looked at the top 1 Shooting Games and dug through the reviews from 9 of the most popular review sites including IGN Southeast Asia, Games Radar, Digital Trends, Trusted Reviews, Kotaku, PC Gamer, Tech Spot, Game Rant, Tech Radar and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Shooting Game you should buy.

Overall Take

"Call of Duty: Black Ops 4" features the smooth, responsive action gamers have come to expect from the series. A wide array of tight maps make for fast-paced action, and gameplay favors tactical strategy more than past entries in the series. "Fortnite" fans will especially love the new Blackout mode. In our analysis of 36 expert reviews, the Activison Activison Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 placed 1st when we looked at the top 3 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note July 2, 2019:
Checkout The Best Shooting Game for a detailed review of all the top shooting games.

Expert Summarized Score
8.9
9 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.8
4,626 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
It’s great that Black Ops 4’s full arsenal is viable instead of just one or two weapon classes that everyone has to adhere to.
- IGN Southeast Asia
October 19, 2018 | Full review
Previous Call of Duty games have almost always been 6v6, except for the Ground War playlist which was 9v9, or Ranked modes. Now, in an effort to bridge the casual Call of Duty players with the competitive ones, Treyarch has reduced public games to 5v5 and increased esports from 4v4 to 5v5. This means that anybody getting involved with Call of Duty for the first time can essentially have the same experience in a public match that pro players find in eSports environments.
- Games Radar
October 19, 2018 | Full review
Multiplayer modes include returning favorites like Hardpoint and Domination, as well as the objective-based Control, which tasks teams with either attacking or defending two points in a similar manner to Overwatch.
- Digital Trends
June 12, 2019 | Full review
It plays to its strengths and delivers enough multiplayer content to make it worth recommending. It’s a strong entry, with fluid shooting.
- Trusted Reviews
October 17, 2018 | Full review
I love the feeling of dropping down to some of my favorite Black Ops locations, while feeling like I’m playing a better and more polished version of PUBG.
- Kotaku
October 15, 2018 | Full review
The whip-sharp precision and reactivity of Blackout’s shooting easily outclasses the slightly-clunky gunplay of PUBG, while the smaller map and the generous distribution of quality loot produce a much faster, more thrilling game that's more akin to Fortnite
- PC Gamer
October 17, 2018 | Full review
Blackout mode has all the hallmarks of a full-fledged battle royale game
- Tech Spot
Black Ops 4‘s multiplayer also benefits from a genuinely great lineup of maps. Hacienda and Icebreaker are standouts, with Icebreaker especially impressive.
- Game Rant
Multiplayer has received some of the biggest changes this year, weaving the familiar bombastic gunplay and some new features that aim to elicit a more tactical approach.
- Tech Radar
October 18, 2018 | Full review
What experts didn't like
Black Ops 4’s multiplayer certainly has its issues, including a disappointing new mode Control, and some lacking map designs.
- IGN Southeast Asia
October 19, 2018 | Full review
I’ve had a couple of crashes in the week since release but more frustrating are the consistent frame rate skips. Blackout is where they happen the most, but it’s also common in both multiplayer and Zombies. A complete system reboot helps for a while, but then the problem reappears without fail.
- Games Radar
October 19, 2018 | Full review
For the first time ever in the series, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 doesn’t include a traditional single-player campaign.
- Digital Trends
June 12, 2019 | Full review
However, this year it has cut the single-player campaign in favour of fleshing out its three distinct multiplayer segments, each of which comfortably contains enough content to fill its own full-price release.
- Trusted Reviews
October 17, 2018 | Full review
I did find the Theater could go a bit wonky and stop responding properly if the clip showed a player emoting, tagging, or even spraying heavy gunfire action. A few saved games caused my PlayStation 4 to blue-screen crash every time I tried to get a screenshot.
- Kotaku
October 15, 2018 | Full review
It’s worth noting that I’ve experienced some serious stability problems while playing the game on my home PC (part of my time playing was also at an Activision review event). Though it runs for hours without incident, I’ve had occasional crashes in virtually every mode, some in the middle of games. Also, Black Ops 4's invite and party systems need some work. My friends constantly have issues joining my party, and they get booted from it between games with no explanation.
- PC Gamer
October 17, 2018 | Full review
Looting and inventory management clunky on console
- Tech Spot
Some longtime Call of Duty fans may notice no mention of the campaign, and that’s because Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 doesn’t have a single player campaign.
- Game Rant
However, the size does mean buildings are spaced out quite far apart in some sections of the map, so it can take a while to find a weapon if you’re trying to avoid other players touching down in the same area.
- Tech Radar
October 18, 2018 | Full review

From The Manufacturer

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Multiplayer raises the bar, delivering the most thrilling experience yet with a focus on tactical, grounded gameplay and player choice. The game offers a new level of online action across a variety of new weaponry, maps and modes. For the first time, Multiplayer serves as the center of the game’s narrative as players explore each Specialist’s role and unique playstyles. With the return of the Pick 10 Create-a-Class system and a new Gear category, gameplay becomes more customizable than ever, giving players choice on how to equip their Specialist. Combined with the ability to unlock devastating Scorestreaks, players will have the opportunity to be powerful on their own or unstoppable as a team. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 delivers the biggest Day 1 Zombies offering ever with three full experiences at launch: IX, Voyage of Despair, and Blood of the Dead. With an exciting new adventure and a brand-new cast of characters, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s Zombies will feature the deep gameplay and easter eggs that its rabid community of fans have come to expect. In Blackout, Black Ops comes to life in a massive battle royale experience that features Black Ops signature combat and land, sea, and air vehicles in the biggest map in Call of Duty history. Bringing together the worlds of Black Ops, play as your favorite characters and battle through iconic settings from the Black Ops universe in an all-out survival and elimination experience.

Overall Product Rankings

1. Activison Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 9
2. Blizzard Overwatch: Origins Edition
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 9
3. Ubisoft Watch Dogs 2
Overall Score: 8.5
Expert Reviews: 9

An Overview On Shooting Games

  • It can’t get mentioned enough when buying a shooting game: You’re going to need online access through whatever system you use to play. Increasingly, the bulk of the action in these type of games consists of online multiplayer, which means you’ll be facing off against avatars played by gamers around the world. On current versions of the major consoles — Xbox One, Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch — you’ll not only need internet access but a membership in their online service (Xbox Live, Playstation Plus or Nintendo Switch Online). Those cost extra if you don’t already have an account, and there are monthly or yearly membership options. They also may come with discounts or free access to other games plus additional media, so it can be worth it for hardcore gamers.
  • Are you buying this game for a child? It may seem redundant to say, but any shooter is going to involve a fair amount of violence. How much of it you care to expose your child to is up to you, but a quick look at the ESRB rating for the game can be helpful. Those ratings are set by the Entertainment Software Rating Board, and they’re generally pretty straightforward. Just like movie ratings, they not only give a recommended minimum age (Teen, 17+, etc.) but supply some brief reasons for their ratings. If you see descriptors like “blood and gore” or “intense violence,” the game might not be the best fit for impressionable tweens. Not every shooting game is a gorefest, however. “Overwatch” might feature intense gunfights, but its action is relatively cartoonish in comparison to the gritty realism of a “Call of Duty” match. And games like “Splatoon” are particularly kid-friendly, with bullets replaced by messy paint pellets. When in doubt, it’s best to search for gameplay videos online and get a look at the action firsthand.
  • The maxim of “buyer beware” doesn’t always stop after you bought the game. Video games these days may contain in-game purchases for content like extra outfits, maps or characters. Look for an “In-Game Purchases” warning on the box just below the ESRB rating, and supervise young players, accordingly.
  • Do you have a gaming headphone/microphone set? If not, it might be a good buy. Shooting games require a lot of cooperation online, and that’s best done in real time by talking to other players. Once again, if buying for young players, consider whether they’re ready to interact with the diverse age groups and personalities they may meet.

DYWM Fun Fact

It wasn’t technically the first first-person shooter, but 1992’s Wolfenstein 3D set the tone for all the shoot-em-ups to follow with its action based around a gory escape from a Nazi prison. It may seem quaint now, but there were days when this kind of bloodshed was considered too much for some gaming platforms. Most notable was Nintendo, whose SNES version of the game swapped out the blood for sweat and erased any Nazi imagery entirely — including Hitler’s mustache.

The Shooting Game Buying Guide

If you picture someone playing a modern video game, chances are you see a shooting game: a grizzled war hero or heavily armored space mercenary with guns blazing, mowing his or her way through hordes of enemies. It may be a cliché, but sometimes it’s a cliché because it’s true. Since the release of “Doom” in 1993, shooters have steadily grown in popularity in the gaming world. That popularity got a big boost with the advent of online multiplayer capability in the 2000s that allowed players to team up against their virtual foes — or more often, against each other — in games like those of the
“Halo series” and the recent smash hit, “Fortnite.”

As far as the storyline goes, shooting games can exist in any number of genres. Military settings, like that of the “Call of Duty” games, might be popular, but shooters can incorporate sci-fi elements or superheroic characters (or both, a la “Overwatch”). The avatar you control in a shooting game might fire bullets, laser beams or magical lightning bolts, but if he/she/it spends a majority of the game firing them, you’re probably playing a shooter.

You might also hear the term “first-person shooter” or FPS applied to a game. That’s in reference to the viewing mode of the in-game camera, where you appear to be looking directly through the eyes of your avatar — in other words, playing in first person perspective. It’s the most common setup for shooting games by far, although there are games where the default is a view from slightly behind the character or third person perspective. Occasionally, you can switch your view mode in the settings of the game. Some first-time players might find the FPS perspective jarring or tough to get used to, but there’s no denying that it’s immersive.

The current online multiplayer craze is the first thing you’ll want to consider when buying a shooting game for yourself or for your kids. Even though they might simulate the most antisocial behavior you can think of, modern shooters are by their very nature a social game. Players will mostly be facing off against and cooperating with other gamers in their personal network or around the world. If you’re looking for a game you can play solo — meaning without real competitors or partners, in the room or online — your options are going to be limited. Most console games these days require some sort of internet connection and possibly a subscription to a gaming network to unlock their full features. With shooting games, that connection is nearly essential.

That said, some shooting games do feature a solo mode that lets you go it alone. Most games in the “Call of Duty” series can be played in a campaign mode that lets you guide a character through a story that progresses in between shoot-em-ups. “Call of Duty: Black Ops 4,” the most recent iteration of its popular spin-off series, makes do with solo missions that don’t present a longer narrative. They’re largely a side attraction to the main event of its multiplayer battles, though. Other games like “Overwatch” do away with solo playability altogether and are built solely around their online multiplayer battles.

There’s a reason games like” Overwatch” and the “Call of Duty” series are so popular, of course. It can be great fun teaming up with other players online and testing your strategies against a new foe every game. It’s also the reason why people tend to gravitate towards games like these that are already popular. Once games like “Overwatch” or “Fortnite” get a big following, the pool of online players increases and support for the game ramps up from developers. Less successful games that are reliant on online multiplayer might be fun at first, but if they don’t make a big enough splash, you might find yourself waiting for players to join your match.

Choose wisely! The most popular shooting games may be pricey, but pick the right one and you’re unlocking the door to a world of unlimited opponents — and unlimited fun.