Now its time for the last Black Ops Zombies review, before I move on to the World at War maps. We are about to dive deep into a map all about big set pieces, puzzles, and epic scale. Welcome my friends to Ascension. The first DLC map, and the last of my Black Ops zombies reviews. So lets initiate the space race as we take a look at Ascension.
Ascension was the first zombies map released post-launch for Call of Duty: Black Ops, and thus, one of the most hyped. Coming 3 months after the release of the game, everyone was gearing up for more zombies content.
Upon initial release, Ascension appeared to be one of the greatest maps. For starters, its huge. Its bigger than Der Riese or Kino, but you don't really appreciate it until you take a ride on one of the maps Lunar Landers. It toyed with new wonder weapon Ideas, the first the Gersch Device, a portable teleporter, and the second the Matryoshka Dolls, a carpet bomb-like grenade. The inclusion of two new perks, PhD Flopper and Stamin-up only added to the hype. A new enemy type was included, Space Monkeys, which could steal your perks. A new version of the Fire pit was introduced. The map also saw the return of a set box spawn, which is one of the favorites among zombies.
Despite the hype and initial reception, Ascension turned out to not be what I was looking for. The map was too easy, requiring a very minimally planned camping strategy to succeed. Even if you didn't want to camp, Ascension had too much open space, making it too easy to circle strafe forever.
Despite some of these negative aspects, Ascension is one of the best maps artistically. The map looks like an Authentic, yet rundown, cosmodrome. And when your brought up into the sky by the landers, you truly appreciate the scale of the map.
One big change veteran players will notice is the removal of the perk Double Tap. Although to some inexperienced players, this would be great news, its removal is bad news for those more experienced or who like to use it. Not having the option is a huge deficit to play style.
When placed up against other maps, from both before and after, Ascension is low on the want list. It does not recreate the fear, intensity, or even fun of any of the other maps. It seems to have been tailor made for players just to get to high rounds, with little challenge involved.
One of the saving graces of this map, the Gersch Device is a black hole bomb. Once deployed, it acts much like a monkey bomb by drawing all Zombies within a certain radius towards it. The zombies are instantly killed once they reach the black hole. It doubles as a makeshift teleporter. When a player jumps through one, they will be teleported to another part of the map, allowing for quick escapes.
The Dolls are the kind of wonder weapon that you get and go "ehh" about. They essentially function like a grenade, that when released, creates several other grenades in the same area. The Dolls are one hit kills, no matter what the round which makes them quite useful. The problem stems from the fact that the Dolls are unpredictable. They can cause a non-cautious player to go down from their explosions and can't be relied on to cover you when reviving a teammate. They can also steer completely clear of zombies, bouncing behind them or out of the map.
This is what zombies is about, the completely unexpected. Flopper is one of the best perks in the whole game as it wraps three effects into one perk. Flopper makes players resistant to fall damage, explosive damage, and cause a massive explosion when diving to prone of of objects. The perk is a great way to conserve ammo, and is just fun to use.
Though it gets somewhat shadowed by Flopper, Stamin-Up still makes a good appearance. Its a perk that players have been asking for for a long time and we finally got it. Stamin-up allows you to sprint longer, and makes your gun lighter, allowing you to generally move faster. Its great for escapes, and making trains of zombies.
The new Enemy in Ascension, Space Monkeys come during their own special round. The monkeys will try to steal perks by jumping on the machines and beating them until they "break". The good thing is the monkeys are easy to kill and not very dangerous, even though they come in large number. If you manage to kill all the monkeys in a round without them touching a perk machine, you will receive the random perk bottle and be able to achieve a fifth perk, a new feature in the map.
Overall Ascension gets a 6.5, it barely pulls through because their are just so many better options out there.