Call of Duty: Black Ops II is easily one of the best multiplayer-focused games on the market. Not only does the original come with a handful of maps, but several downloadable add-ons have also released, including the most recent Vengeance pack.
This DLC collection, which is available via download for $14.99, comes with four new multiplayer maps, along with a new Zombies map called Buried. In addition, fans of the undead will utilize a new weapon, the Ray Gun Mark II, which will let them take down enemies in rapid succession – provided they have the ammunition.
On that note, we've played through the maps and have tips that will help you stay alive a bit longer.
Zombies Map: Buried
We'll start with the Zombies map because it's the most notable addition in the Vengeance pack. It's a small area, tinier than the Tranzit map, and takes place in a Wild West town packed with zombies. Your goal is to break into new areas with the help of any weapons you find while trying to stay alive.
There are secondary weapons to help you out. As we mentioned, the Ray Gun Mark II is an effective gun, a step up from the original Ray Gun with its three burst shots. However, that means it goes through ammunition much quicker, so you'll want to find your restock points before you make too much progress.
Another weapon introduced for this specific map is the Paralyzer. It's an unlimited ammo weapon that fries zombies with its beam. However, its firing rate is abysmally slow, meaning you'll have to switch to another weapon while it recharges.
Other utilities prove useful in the Buried map. The Time Bomb enables you to set up a save point that rewinds the game up to that specific moment, should you become overwhelmed or make a mistake. There's also a Vulture Aid perk that drops pick-ups from enemies – you'll see them from zombies when they glow yellow – as well as revealing the location of the mystery box and wall weapons.
Finally, one thing you won't want to overlook is Leroy. This hulking giant is locked away in a prison cell, meaning you'll need to find the key to let him out. Once you do, he serves as a mighty aid to your cause, smashing through zombies and breaking into new areas. You can also feed him candy to have him assemble new defenses for you, or charge him up with alcohol to send him flying in an uncontrollable rage.
Now, onto the regular maps.
This circular desert island has several paths on the outside leading to a huge battle area on the inside, but with plenty of cover points for players who don't like being out in the open. You can also hide in the cockpit of crashed planes around the island if you're looking for an ideal sniping point.
Two things to keep in mind: number one, the narrow hallways leading into the center of the map are ideal for setting traps, mainly claymores, as some opponents may not proceed with caution in these areas; and number two, watch where you step when it comes to water. It could be deeper than you think, and if you get in over your head, you're done.
In this map, you'll fight along a decimated bridge ideal for both ground troops and snipers; check out the catwalks.
With Detour, it's best to spread your team out, rather than keeping them in one specific point. Have a couple of snipers on the upper decks while the rest of the team accesses the catwalks and central area. Cover every point that you can, and you'll be ready for the other team's assault.
Finally, watch those steps with the holes in the central area of the bridge. If you fall off, you're dead.
At one point, Rush's stadium-like set-up was used as a paintball facility. However, your team is playing for keeps here, so stay on your toes. Rush is a rectangular-shaped arena with both indoor and outdoor settings, providing something for all kinds of players. For instance, those of you who prefer long-range shooting can stick to the parking lots, taking out any soldiers that happen to pass through. Meanwhile, more aggressive players can hold point on the inside of the arena, using an SMG or shotgun for best results.
It's important to learn your routes and keep moving. Stand still long enough and you’re easy pickings for the other team. Also, watch out for the hallway between the two upper-level rooms. Though you won't get sniped there, it's an easy spot to get into a skirmish – or walk into a trap with claymores or bouncing betties.
Players familiar with the Summit map from Call of Duty: Black Ops will feel right at home on this map, since it's pretty much an updated version of it. You battle within a rain-soaked facility on a mountaintop, with a huge open area right in the middle.
Fans of close-range combat will immediately find a good spot in the center, while those who prefer sniping can take refuge in the second-floor hallways that open out into the area. The only downside is that someone can easily run up and take out a sniper without being noticed. Watch your back.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II is available for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U and PC. NOTE: The Vengeance pack is not available for Wii U yet.