Average User Score: 5.1Jan 17, 2013Rated purely as a multiplayer experience, Nexon's Combat Arms is among the best out there. A slew of gameplay modes, more guns than possiblyRated purely as a multiplayer experience, Nexon's Combat Arms is among the best out there. A slew of gameplay modes, more guns than possibly any other game ever made, detailed, well-laid out maps, and in-depth character customization make a potent combination for any FPS fan. Sounds incredible, yeah? However, when looking at the tangential factors, cracks in this lovely facade appear, revealing the gooey mess of the game's core.
The P2W model is a good starting point. There's good and bad ways to implement this model, and Combat Arms(abbreviated CA) has done poorly in this regard. Weapons that can be bought permanently with in-game currency (GP) are limited to extremely rare special events, and the prices are often beyond the means of most players. So you rent guns for fixed periods of time. A recent update has removed the option to rent for one day, which basically ties you to playing the game for at least a week solid to recoup your losses from rentals. Now, if you're willing to throw cash at the game, then there's awesome gear a-plenty for perm and rent available to you. I've personally sprung for a few guns during my playtime as a gesture of goodwill and appreciation towards Nexon back when I was more inclined to like them. As an aside, I consider buying gear with cash in a game to be like a tip. The devs have provided a product to you, said you don't have to pay, but if you'd like to thank them, buying a gun helps both you and them.
Increasingly imbalanced gear, guns, and characters have been introduced, breaking the game quite badly in favor of paying players. Some of the gametypes introduce thoroughly frustrating situations, such as the horde mode Fireteam, where in the zombie maps you probably shouldn't bother showing up without the biggest backpack you can afford and at least three MGs, if not going in for a specialist, medkits, and a minigun. Oh, speaking of the minigun and spec weapons, the piss-poor netcode and optimization results in more than one person using the minigun per map to cause lag, and anyone using the flamethrower will drag the game to a crawl. Optimization problems are very prevalent in the game, largely due to the ancient Jupiter engine the game is sourced on, which was never meant to handle the type of game that Combat Arms is and has become.
And then you have the hackers. There have been three great hacker wars so far, and a fourth seems to be brewing on the horizon. CA's dev team can't seem to patch all the holes in the engine, and to top it off, there are design issues on maps that have been repeatedly ignored.
The community is also a sore point. CA, largely due to its age and marketing, is filled with the most obnoxious sort of online gamers. Griefers, hackers, potty-mouthed tweens, they're all here. There are good players who play clean, polite, and respectfully. But they're few and far between, and they often become just as poisonous as the other players as an insulation technique.
In short, CA is a great concept with an African warlord's armory worth of firepower, let down by bad coding, hacking, a horrid community, and design that not so much nudges as boots players in the direction of the cash shop.… Expand