Modern Combat 5: Blackout
The frenetic shooter franchise is back for more high-octane action.
Gameloft's blockbuster Modern Combat series is an annual hit, and its latest iteration, Modern Combat 5: Blackout, is more of the same polished, frenetic shooting that you've come to expect over the years. And while it's content to remain mired in convention and "modern warfare" tropes, it's still very much exemplary of what mobile developers are capable of when it comes to recreating a home console experience to rival even that of the big boys' toys.
Modern Combat: Blackout carries the pedigree of the rest of the Modern Combat franchise, with a fantastic single-player mode that places youin the shoes of one Caydan Phoenix, the "everyman" soldier who runs from point A to point B, gun in hand, eliminating enemy threats. While the narrative is paltry compared to that of "big gudget" shooters, it's engaging enough to sustain a single-player campaign that's divided into bite-sized chunks.
For shooter fans who simply don't have the time or patience to engage in hardcore multiplayer matches every single time they log on, this is a nice boon that will certianly attract different types of players. The stop-and-pop mechanics are satisfying as well, especially when it comes to level organization. You'll want to devote some small blocks of time to the game in order to level up your character, and experience is distributed evenly throughout the game no matter which mode you choose to play. This means that even if you never touch multiplayer until you're finished with the single-player campaign, you can still increase your stats until you're satisfied.
Of course, these upgrades all come in conjunction with gorgeous graphics, lag-free online play, and the ability to play with one profile on any device is a huge plus when it comes to players who have multiple units on which they might consider playing.
Modern Combat 5: Blackout does require an always-on connection if you want to play single-player or multiplayer, so if you've got an unreliable internet connection this game maynot be for you. Depending on your connectivity, you may find yourself having issues playing either mode, and this can be a huge hindrance depending on what kind of internet you're working with.
Additionally, the controls can be somewhat fiddly, which is an issue mostly resolved when playing on a larger screen, but something to keep in mind. The virtual controls can be jarring, but the promise of controller support will likely alleviate these issues in future updates.
If you're looking for a slick, modern shooter for your mobile devices, Modern Combat 5: Blackout is one of the best contenders out there. It does falter here and there, but those faults do come with the territory. Given its affordable price compared to blockbuster shooters on consoles, it's still very much worth looking at and should be held as the higher standard to which other mobile shooters can aspire.