Well after plenty of time and nothing but little hints of when either of them might come – the PC community will finally get their hands on both the First Strike DLC and the big 1.07 patch for COD:Black Ops on Friday March 25th.
Unfortunately as I suspected it would; the First Strike DLC will come at a price of $14.99 through Steam – unless you take advantage of the pathetic attempt at lessening the pain from the kick in the face this release has been on the PC and pre-order the First Strike DLC at 10% off. I knew Activision wouldn’t let it slip out the door with some sort of price tag and typically I wouldn’t expect them to be free (those days are over) but with the shotty way the game released on the PC the DLC should have at least been sold at an outright discount (somewhere around $5) instead of a temporary pre-order discount.
As usual with the way information is given to us; no one is really sure how the DLC will work on the dedicated server side yet and I am sure we won’t know until the release on Friday. GameServers – the only Game Server Provider for the game is stating these details on how the dedicated servers will work is something that Treyarch wants to release and GS won’t even say a word on the matter. UPDATE: Understanding DLC on the PC posted by JD_2020.
Shortly after the Tweet from CM JD_2020 announcing the First Strike release, PCDev also announced that the 1.07 patch will be released on Friday March 25th as well. Well it is about freaking time! Even though there aren’t any release notes posted yet this update should have a number of gameplay changes and additions that the XBOX 360 has been playing with since December 3rd… that’s right December freaking 3rd… Waiting for pathetic console exclusive DLC is one thing but waiting months for simple changes that have already been applied to other platforms of the game is just plain ridiculous.
Who knows what is actually in the patch until we get some release notes but there should be items such as map updates to get rid of numerous issues/exploits within them, spawn system improvements, minor weapon balancing with the AK74u recoil and ADS speed as well as sniper rifle damage and the ridiculous knife lunge, enemy target indicator delay on the Huey and Hind Killstreaks, RC-XD explosion radius reduction, Second Chance Perk point award changes, limitation to the Hardline Pro Perk of re-rolling Care Packages only, additional editing functionality in Theater Mode with “Dolly Cam”, and probably a lot more. This will probably be a pretty good patch – unfortunately it is way too late in the game to bring back the many people that were interested in the game months ago. Sure there still seems to be people playing it and admittedly I am still playing it here and there because nothing else seems interesting to me right now but so many people in the PC community have dropped this game already and aren’t looking back.
The Steam Statistics page has shown COD:Black Ops beaten by COD:Modern Warfare 2 in terms of daily “peak player count” for almost two weeks consecutively now – and for COD:Black Ops to be only entering it’s fifth month of release and the failure of a game (by PC standards) that COD:Modern Warfare 2 was; the situation is quite pathetic right now. Many dedicated COD fans have moved on to other games; practically all of the competitive players interested in competitive COD:Black Ops has moved on or went back to other titles; server count is down to just over 13,000 servers which means there is approximately 3 players for every server, the game still runs terrible for some out there and there are drastic performance discrepancies between different hardware and operating systems that no one from Treyarch cares to explain or even acknowledge. The last ditch effort of mod tools are probably still a month or more away from release – who knows – but who will be around to play anything custom when they do come out? To me there aren’t a whole lot of people playing the game that really care about custom maps or mods at this point and the last thing these mappers and modders want to do is spend a lot of time creating content that wont be played. With so many dedicated server limitations still in place I just don’t see custom content going anywhere in this game. On top of all of those negative factors the fact that some other pretty interesting games are starting to release now and will be in the near future; the player numbers along with interest are going to keep dropping and dropping for COD:Black Ops.