The most important thing about Call of Duty: Ghosts is the fact there is a dog. Therefore it is only logical to conclude that the most important thing about the Call of Duty: Ghosts launch party is the fact that there was a dog. A real dog, that it was possible to pet.
As conscientious videogame journalists we thought it only right that we reviewed this crucial part of the game for you. We're selfless like that.
Please note: on a recent trip to Nottingham's GameCity festival I accidentally packed a set of dog-themed Top Trumps cards instead of my business cards. The two-hour train journey meant that I became very familiar with the criteria by which one might judge a dog. However, due to the confined nature of the launch party some were harder to assess than others - so those have been substituted for equally applicable criteria.
The Top Trumps card for German Shepherds states that Riley should have a keen nose ranking of 85/100. That's as may be, but he didn't seem to have clocked the fact that there had recently been a sausage roll in my handbag. That or he didn't rate the sausage roll. There were also people with entire trays of meat-based canapes in the next room which appeared to pass unnoticed (well, I say canapes but isn't the point of canapes that you can fit them in your mouth in one go? You couldn't do that with these. I tried.) Either Riley has fallen short in the keen nose ranking or he is exceedingly well behaved. Which brings us to the second category.
This category combines 'Ease of Training' and 'Noisiness' as well as general temperament. Riley was the model of good manners and excellent judgement and coordination - which is one up on some of the inhabitants of the dance floor as the evening wore on. He didn't make a break for the canapes (see previous category) and he didn't even get fed up with the group of men who took one look at him and then spent a full minute asking "Oh my God, is that Wellard?" I have no idea where they thought they were - an EastEnders wrap party in the early nineties, or something.
Anyway, nobody was savaged to death and he sat and walked and posed exactly as requested by his handler and the photographers. Top marks in the Good Boy-ness category.
Fur (or hair) is generally considered to be a decent indicator of graphicsability, so we then examined Riley's coat. The adjectives which sprang to mind were "glossy" and "well-groomed". You could even make out the individual hairs from about a foot away and they moved realistically as he changed positions. A picture circulated around the PC Gamer office resulted in the consensus that Riley had optimal graphics and we would like to hug him and maybe throw a ball for him. He is nice.
Would pet again.
Editor's note: our actual review of Call of Duty: Ghosts is currently being worked on. It's got a dog in it, though! What could possibly go wrong.