COD Ghosts will feature a perks system that assigns each perk a point value from one to five. Perks, like weapons, can be unlocked with squad points and perk-happy players can use additional perks in place of a secondary weapon. Perks include faster movement, quicker re-loading and the ability to reveal nearby enemies on the mini-map. Some perks will be familiar to Call of Duty fans while others will be brand new for Ghosts. All perks have been better designed to give players the ability to tailor perk abilities to individual play-styles.
Cranked is one of the seven new game modes being introduced in Ghosts. Cranked is a variation of the Team Deathmatch mode. Killing an enemy combatant in Cranked mode will start a 30-second countdown timer. Gamers must kill another enemy within those 30 seconds in order to restart the countdown timer. Should a gamer fail to kill another enemy within the allotted time, they will explode and die. Other new multiplayer modes include Search and Rescue, a variation of Search and Destroy adding in the dog tag system from Kill Confirmed and allowing players to respawn if a teammate picks up their dropped tag.
Kill streaks in Ghosts have undergone some modifications as well. Kill streaks from previous titles have been modified or removed completely and replaced with 20 new kill streaks for Ghosts, most excited of which is the Riley kill streak bonus. For the first time, Call of Duty gamers will be able to use a vicious attack dog named Riley against enemy players. In addition to attacking enemies, Riley will also act as a kind of UAV, alerting players of nearby enemies.
COD Ghosts will also see a change to the number of air-based kill streaks, which are fewer and have been replaced with more ground-based kill streaks. This was done in an effort to reduce the amount of specialized equipment necessary to counter an enemy loadout. Also, fans can rejoice as COD Ghosts has completely removed death streaks.
In Ghosts, gamers will have more opportunities for character customization than ever. Players will have 20,000 customization variations, including the ability to play as a female soldier. Multiplayer gamers will have access to 30 new weapons in Ghosts, including the new Marksmen Rifle weapon class that will bridge the gap between assault and sniper rifles. Weapons will also feature a dual-render scope, which will keep the target in-site while seeing the rest of the game universe in their peripheral vision.
According to Activision, the A.I. in Ghosts will behave more like real players. A.I. will move and camp like real soldiers, think and act strategically depending on the situation, game type and loadout, and will be more difficult to kill. In regards to friendly A.I. such as those the gamer can use in the Squads mode, they too will see upgrades. If an A.I. squadmate picks up a sniper rifle, they will behave like a sniper. Changing a loadout on an A.I. squadmate will cause that squadmate to act and move like a soldier of that class.
During hands-on time with Ghosts multiplayer, the graphics are sharper and the developers of Ghosts have taken the time to explore the environmental details of each map. An abandoned strip club actually looks like an abandoned strip club complete with old flyers, degraded curtains and abandoned glassware. Sorry, no actual strippers were present. The characters move more fluidly and are less impaired and less likely to be slowed down by environmental objects like railings and low walls. The sound does a lot to make the game feel more immersive and realistic.
Overall, there seems to be a lot to get excited about in COD Ghosts. Gamers who purchase Ghosts for current gen systems can also look forward to porting their stats, prestige levels and any purchased DLC to a next-gen console for free, for a limited time, should they decide to upgrade.