I was pleasantly surprised with this game.
Fun new Nazi Zombies mode
Inconsistent hit detection
Enemy grenade spam in campaign is frustrating
Tanks don't belong in multiplayer
After playing Call of Duty 4 for a year, and learning that Treyarch would be making the next Call of Duty, I was initially worried. Having not liked Call of Duty 3 that much, Treyarch's last CoD, I assumed it would be more of the same. I have to say, Treyarch did a good job with World at War.
World at War returns us to the familiar World War II battlefield. Only this time, we get to fight in the Pacific theater against the Japanese, as the previous WWII CoDs were mainly against the Germans. This provides players with a fresh take on WWII, rather than just another German campaign. One big flaw with the campaign is that enemies tend to toss a large amount of grenades, especially on Veteran difficulty. Other than the grenade spam-fest, the campaign is quite good. The story is intriguing and actually more memorable than the Modern Warfare campaign.
A new game mode as been added in World at War: Nazi Zombies. This is simply a blast to play with your friends, as you must fight off wave after wave of increasingly difficult Zombies. You can buy better weapons off the wall, or get a random one in a box to help you fend off the blood-thirsty zombies. This was without a doubt the best addition to the Call of Duty franchise, as it provides players with a new co-op experience, rather than just the competitive multiplayer.
Speaking of competitive multiplayer, this was what made Call of Duty 4 so successful. The best way to put it would be Call of Duty 4, in a WWII setting. You still have your 3, 5, 7 killstreaks, and plenty of weapons and perks to choose from. Prestige mode also makes a return, but you must reach level 65, rather than 55 like in CoD 4. I'd say, for the most part, World at War's multiplayer is good, since it is so similar to CoD 4. A few issues I do have with the game include questionable weapon balance, faulty hit detection, vehicles, and shaky respawns. I find that the MP40 is severely overpowered, as well as most machine guns, making any other gun useless. Hit detection is definitely worse than it was in CoD 4, as I can count plenty of times where I've emptied half a clip into someone and they still don't die. Tanks were an admirable idea, but they don't belong in Call of Duty, as they are simply too hard to destroy, so it is really tough to eliminate an enemy tank. Respawns can also be a bit odd, as I've been spawned right in front of the enemy team quite a few times, or respawned looking at the ground or the sky. Other than these issues, World at War is a great online experience.
To sum it up, World at War is a solid shooter and any Call of Duty fan should own this game. Treyarch really impressed me this time.