Finally - and I feel I've saved the best 'til last here - is Gun Game. For every kill you make in this mode, you'll move up a weapon tier. Starting out with a single pistol, players will move through shotguns, assault rifles, sniper rifles, rocket launchers and finally, ballistic knives. There are 20 tiers to work through, which in theory means you could win the game with 20 kills. Should you bite the dust enough times, however, you might find yourself demoted; stripped of your weapon and replaced with that of the tier below. The fun is derived from knowing the order of the guns, and working out how to move onto the next tier as quickly as possible. On the level I played, the sniper rifle was the hardest tier to move up from, and with people running round with rocket launchers and quick-fire assault rifles - it became incredibly hard to get a shot in edgeways.
At the end of the game, a friendly chap from Treyarch asked if I'd like to watch back the match I'd just played. Given the fact I hadn't sucked quite as bad as I had on previous occasions (I got to tier 19 on this occasion), I decided to take him up on his offer. The game stores roughly 100 of your previous matches, which can be viewed at any time in Theatre Mode. If you like what you see, the game can be placed on your File Share, where it can be edited and chopped up into segments as you see fit. You can view the action from any of the other player's perspectives, and there's also a free cam for getting the perfect shot of the action. Finished clips can be uploaded for anybody in the community to see, and will also find themselves on a yet-to-be-revealed Black Ops site. While this is obviously a feature pioneered (or at least defined) by Halo 3, it's a very welcome addition to the game, and rounds the multiplayer facets of the game off nicely.
Before drawing things to a conclusion, one last point; killstreaks no longer count towards further killstreaks. It might seem like a trivial point to dedicate an entire paragraph to, but this has a huge impact on the pacing of the game. Just like any other first person shooter, players have to earn their kills. This should be something achieved through skill, not through (what some people might describe as) a cheap killstreak. As far as I could tell, this gave Black Ops a much better sense of progression, and made the game harder for those people who are clearly better than everybody else anyway.
Truth be told, I left the Black Ops Multiplayer presentation with a pang of disappointment. No open beta. No crazy subscription model that would get the whole industry arguing in an excitable fashion. Just a few new game modes that could have been announced in a far less hyped (and expensive) fashion. That said, this is Call of Duty, the Crown Jewels of the video game world, so hype and extravagance are part of the package.
The Wager Matches I played were thoroughly engrossing, and given the fact I have a weakness for gambling, I can see this as something I'll be investing a lot of time (and COD points) into. As always, it'll take time to see how the gaming masses take to the new modes, but with customisable character classes, emblems, COD points, and a fairly in depth Theatre mode, Treyarch is proving that this isn't merely a repackaged Modern Warfare.
Call of Duty: Black Ops is available for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on November 9.