Games: Call of Duty – Infinite Warfare

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (Multi)

By: Activision

AT 16 you can join the army, but must wait another two years to buy Call of Duty: though you'd never know it, given the franchise's ridiculous popularity among the 'oik' set.

But, if Battlefield 1's old-fashioned history lesson took the hipster route to blasting, its Call of Duty rival instead shoots for the stars with a slice of space blasting that plays out like the final scenes of Moonraker as directed by Michael Bay.

The most futuristic of the franchise, Infinite Warfare has players spacesuiting up as pilot Nick Reyes, who commands Earth's last remaining warship, Retribution, when villainous rebels from Mars attack the third rock from the sun.

It's from the hub of the Retribution where players can select missions (for the first time, the series offers optional side quests) and change weapon load-outs.

Sadly, the hub system also means a lot of forced ambling and riding in elevators when you should be surface-side yanking triggers. The game's best moments play with the space setting, and its stunning cinematic setpieces – from aerial dogfights and interstellar skydives to zero-G assaults – plunder the best of Bay.

Sadly, these are often diversions from the meat 'n' spuds blasting, where the game coasts on the fumes of past glories as you line up dudes in your sights.

Of course, multi-player is the long-term investment here, and Infinite Warfare's online killing fields offer up the usual carnage, spiced no end by the galactic setting.

The tongue-in-rotting-cheek 'Zombies mode' also returns with the kitschy Zombies in Spaceland, where players can try out carnival games and decimate undead hordes in the abandoned '80s theme park of Spaceland.

CoD is still top dog at making interactive action cinema, and Infinite Warfare comes with the kind of celluloid polish you'd expect from one of the biggest entertainment properties in the world, with a cast that includes David Hasselhoff, Game of Thrones' Kit Harington and Irish MMA champ Conor McGregor.

The chin-stroking set will no doubt cluck their tongues at the teen-baiting uber-violence, gossamer thin plot and coconut-shy blasting, but Infinite Warfare's lavish production values and adrenaline-milking gameplay offer popcorn gaming at its finest.

The gaming equivalent of junk food is still damn tasty, and with the latest now on sale, we can expect juvenile arrest levels to dip for at least a few weeks.

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