Ever since the news broke that Treyarch was developing the next title in the Call of Duty series, people have been talking about where it could go. While many gamers supported the fresh new ideas that were implemented in Advanced Warfare, others scoffed at it and hoped that Black Ops 3 wouldn’t bring back things like exo suits.

Black Ops 3 vs Advanced Warfare

Well, BO3 doesn’t exactly feature exoskeletons, but it does still provide players with advanced maneuvers. On top of that, it also introduced another new mechanic to the game – specialists. Before and after the beta people have been arguing about which game is better. Let’s talk more about that.

Black Ops 3 vs Advanced Warfare

In many ways, Black Ops 3 is quite similar to AW – there’s really no question about that. It’s set in the future, technology in the game is quite advanced, and players are able to execute unnatural movements such as boost jumps, thrust-backed slides, and even run on walls.

Movement Mechanics

The main difference between BO3 and AW is how these moves are implemented. In Advanced Warfare players were practically able to fly around the map because the boost jumps allowed for ridiculous vertical mobility and you could do it constantly thanks to the exo movements.

Advanced Warfare Jetpack

In BO3, on the other hand, the maneuvers are much more subtle and they have a longer cooldown on them. This means that the jumps, while still bigger than a human can pull off, aren’t as exaggerated. Plus, you can only use it so often. You have to weight for your energy to recharge before being able to perform another, especially if you chained 2 or 3 moves together.

Black Ops 3 Wall Running

The beta really gave us a great idea of how this would work in the game. The result was that players actually stayed planted on the ground more than they were airborne, which gave the game a more traditional feel. Sure, you can execute a boost jump to reach an otherwise inaccessible ledge, but you don’t see characters floating through the air at all times like you would in Advanced Warfare.

Equipment Usage

Another thing that some Call of Duty fans didn’t like about Advanced Warfare was the Exo launcher. This device was essentially a small gun located directly on your character’s wrist that allowed you to fire off grenades. This COULD have been a decent addition to the game, but Sledgehammer Games, the developer behind AW, made it so that you could literally launch ‘nades clear across the map.

Advanced Warfare Exo Launcher

In addition to the launcher itself, the grenades were met with some criticism. From small bots that floated around and exploded on enemies to drones that painted nearby targets on your mini-map, these pieces of equipment were a bit too much for many players.

In Black Ops 3, the lethal and tactical equipment selections are much more old-school. Classics such as frags, semtex, and C4 all make a return. Perhaps the only different piece of equipment is the thermite grenade which creates a burn-zone upon impact that damages players that are within the zone. Tacticals are pretty standard for the most part, too. These include smoke grenades, concussions, flashbangs, EMP grenades, and so on.


Another obvious difference is the inclusion of the new specialist classes. This is something that’s almost as controversial as exo suits. Some players really liked them, others thought they ruined the game. Honestly, it comes down to personal preference.

Black Ops 3 Specialists

We actually liked these new character classes. They add an interesting new dynamic to the game but, at the same time, aren’t game-breaking. Sure, they’re a tad powerful, but they don’t last long and it takes a good bit to get up the special energy required to use your specialist’s ability or weapon. It’s almost like you’re just getting a free scorestreak or additional perk a couple times per match.

This is vastly different from Advanced Warfare because obviously that game didn’t have these new classes for players to use.


This one is still a bit up in the air, but so far we know that Advanced Warfare obviously had a fairly in-depth character customization system via the different items you could get from supply drops and so on. We don’t know if this level of customization will be available for characters in Black Ops 3 just yet.

Advanced Warfare Character Customization

We do know, however, that weapons will be much more customizable than they ever have before thanks to features like the Gunsmith and Paint Shop. These new additions of the game allow players to create custom graphics to slap on the sides of their weapons and add up to six different attachments to their guns.

Guns Blazing

Another cool new feature in Black Ops 3 that wasn’t seen in Advanced Warfare or any other Call of Duty game for that matter, is the ability to aim and fire your weapon while sprinting. Not only can you shoot while sprinting, you can also do it while sliding, wall running, or even swimming underwater (another new ability in the game).

Black Ops 3 ADS

This makes the game feel a bit faster paced and allows players to be ready to pop off an opponent at all times. In previous titles, such as BO2, you weren’t able to ready your weapon in the middle of the sprint. This would often lead to deaths due to not being able to react to an enemy fast enough. That is a moot point now.


Overall, there are several things that set these two games apart. Personally, we believe Black Ops 3 is the better choice. AW pissed a lot of people off. The movement mechanics in that game made it feel way too different. BO3 looks and plays a lot like it’s predecessor, just with a few new abilities.

Want more details about the game? Be sure to read our in-depth Black Ops 3 multiplayer guide. If you want some help learning how to get better at the game, also check out our awesome Black Ops 3 tips.