PS5 Review: Call of Duty: Vanguard

Should you chip in for this year’s COD?

This is WWII combat like never before. Witness the origins of Special Forces as you play a pivotal role and change the face of history, forming Task Force One in a gripping Campaign across four major theaters of war. Become an original Special Forces Operator in an online Multiplayer rich in innovation with 20 maps available at launch. Prepare for a franchise-first, universe-expanding Zombies crossover. Immerse yourself in a fully integrated Call of Duty®: Warzone™ experience featuring a new and massive map.

COD Vanguard is a return to World War II, something we’ve experienced numerous times during the franchise and despite that, Vanguard manages to stand out on its own two feet. Sledgehammer is the only COD developer without a continuing series like Modern Warfare or Black Ops but even if they don’t end up with one of their own, I think I can safely say that Vanguard is their best entry to date and it’s going to be tough for them to outdo when it’s their next turn round.

The campaign has some truly memorable moments, interesting characters and plenty of set pieces that push the power of the new systems. Usually when I play a COD campaign, I breeze through it and then never go back to it, but I think this year I will make an exception and attempt a Veteran playthrough, which is something I haven’t attempted since the original MW2.

Multiplayer is the standard fair of new maps, operators and so forth and contains an impressive 20 maps at launch. It doesn’t reinvent the wheel per se, but its still the great multiplayer you know and love, plus the maps are very well designed by the Sledgehammer team and contain some of my favourite maps in years.Warzone will also be getting a new map on 2nd of December, so there’s still more content to come for players. The DualSense features are small but effective with the haptic feedback and adaptive triggers giving a nice feel to your weapons.

Zombies feels fresh this year as your squad enters portals with different objectives like escorting an entity to a point while holding back the horde or simply surviving in tight quarters for a short time. I’m usually awful at Zombies but managed to even pull off a full extraction first time round. It’s definitely the most I’ve enjoyed a Zombies mode and I hope what comes next can only get better.

Vanguard is the best-looking COD to date, pushing the PS5 far with impressive character models and level design. The game can run up to 120FPS with no slowdown that I saw, load times are short too. Voice-acting is also top notch thanks to the likes of Laura Bailey. The soundtrack was decent too, so all in all top marks across the board here.

The Verdict

While it doesn’t innovate, COD Vanguard improves upon past entries with the best campaign I’ve played in years, well designed maps and the most addictive Zombies mode I’ve come across. Sledgehammer has its work cut out trying to beat this on their next attempt…

Score: 8.5