When Call of Duty: World at War was announced to have a four player co-op mode as well as split screen play, we were all pretty happy. Then the Zombie mode was announced and we jigged with excitement. Finally a Call of Duty game with co-op! And even though we reviewed the game fairly positively there are some glowing problems, specifically with the split screen mode.
While Call of Duty: World at War isn't a very long game, it's not one that can easily be played in one sitting. But that's just what the developers are asking of split screen players as there's simply no way to save your progress in this co-op mode. Even though we pointed out the problem in our review of the game as well as an episode of our podcast, people are still getting bitten by it.
Our forums are filled with folks furious about this missing feature. Co-Optimus member Lo_Rez writes:
COD:WAW is not a true co-op game if you cannot SAVE your co-op game. This is highly misleading, to the point of being a bait and switch to the consumer.
Another member had this to say:
My brother and I live for co-op. And this game really screwed us both. The only reason we bought it was for the co-op. And we just recently realized that we can't save it after we made it to the fourth level. And we wanted to play split screen on xbox live too, and of course you can't do that either. The developers really ruined World at War.
We know it's difficult to disclose all the features of a game on your box, and we know it's partially are job to provide this kind of information to our readers, but perhaps there's something more developers can do? In such a severe case like this I would think a nice little disclosure when selecting the mode would apply. Nobody likes playing for three or four hours straight only to realize that all your progress is going to be lost.
It should be noted that you can choose which level to play on, but only if you unlocked it in single player.
Like we said in our most recent Co-Opticast, we realize development cycles are difficult and tight, and sometimes concessions have to be made, but where there are concessions there also needs to be some sort of disclosure.
So pass this article on to a friend, get the word out. Let developers know if you are going to implement co-op, please do it right. And join us for the co-op night, because the online mode (especially zombies), still rock!