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Posts Tagged ‘Call of Duty’

We’re now a month in since the release of Modern Warfare 2 and after racking up nearly a full days worth of play time I think I’m ready to post a few thoughts about it.

Infinity Ward have done something that Epic and Bungie (the first time round) failed to do, and that’s deliver a sequel that is not only every bit as good as its predecessor but actually better.

Firstly the Single player campaign:

There’s not much to be said really, the campaign plays like a Hollywood movie with some of the best set pieces seen on a console. The only games I’ve played with set pieces anywhere near as good are Gears of War, Halo 3 and Resident Evil 4.

People are bashing the single player experience as too short but in my opinion, it’s the first Call of Duty that didn’t seem to have levels thrown in the middle just for the fun of it. As good as COD 2 and the first Modern Warfare were, I felt that especially during the run up to the finale there were levels that didn’t develop the story enough. World at War was another prime example and COD 3 just seemed to go on forever. I’m really happy with the length of the campaign though, I’d much rather a short game where every level is great rather than a long campaign that drags out gameplay just for the sake of it.

My only criticism (and it is a very small one) is that in using the Cockney voice actors from the previous Modern Warfare I was a bit confused as to who the characters around me actually were and both games seemed to morph into one in my memory. As I said, a small gripe but nothing that spoiled my enjoyment.

Infinity Ward finally fixed veteran difficulty and put an end to the infinite respawns and grenade throwing. Again, this is getting knocked by the hardcore players who say that veteran is way too easy now but I’ve got no problem with it at all. There were areas in Modern Warfare that seemed absolutely impossible to play through properly and it was only once I’d decided to forget about killing enemies and just sprint to the next checkpoint that I managed to make it to the next save.

World at War was another example of how utterly frustrating COD can be when the difficulty is too tough, the grenade throwing and endless respawns were ridiculous. Corkscrew and Blowtorch took me about 6 hours of non-stop gaming to complete and it was after that level that I decided to hang up my vet boots. When I used to see gamercards where the whole of the game had been completed I felt a bit of pity for the poor gamer who dedicated so much time to remembering the enemy paths in order to finish the game. And that was the point about previous veteran difficulties, it was not so much about skill, more remembering where the enemies would come from and trying to find the invisible line that would stop the spawning.

The bottom line is that I’m happy, veteran MW2 was an absolute great experience. Yes there were still levels that I was stumped on for hours at a time and Yes I still managed to trigger checkpoints at the most inappropriate times (screen red, close to death etc) but every level seemed totally do-able.

As for the ending – absolutely top-notch and has got me foaming at the mouth to see what happens next to Capt Price & Co.

And now the Multiplayer:

More of the same really, fantastic maps that seem to be really well balanced, the introduction of killstreak customisation and more perks & challenges. MW2 online is every bit as addictive as Modern Warfare and unfortunately, that is its downfall.

Now I might be going against the grain on this but I think that the very reasons that MW2 is a great game are also the reasons why it won’t be a fantastic game that’s remembered for years to come.

The online experience is only so addictive because it’s so rewarding, with so many challenges to complete and because the levelling up system is so transparent, it seems as though getting X amount of kills with X weapon is all 90% of online gamers are bothered about.

Its getting increasingly obvious due to the lack of in-game chat that most team members are just going it alone in a bid for more kills. It doesn’t seem as though many people are actually bothered about winning matches, as long as they get the all important couple of thousand points for kills they’re happy.

Near enough every game will have a good example of this. How many times have been playing, seen someone get killed and immediately after respawning, sprint straight back to the point where they were killed? The idea behind it is that they know there’s an enemy waiting, hence there will be a kill waiting. Inevitably this just leads to feeding the opposing team a bunch of free kills.

A good online experience for me is joining a match where everyone is on a mic, a bit of game chat and a lot of banter. I’m getting really tired now of joining matches only to play in complete silence and it’s making what should be an amazing game into a bit of nothing.

If you need any evidence of this, check out the kill/ death ratio of your friends on the leaderboards. If it’s anything like mine the players who have reached the high echelons and made prestige have absolutely horrific ratios, this is because they don’t care how many times they’ve been killed as long as they’ve racked up a couple of dozen themselves. I think it says a lot when the MVP of a team has 15-20 kills with double that amount of deaths. And this isn’t something that happens rarely, I regularly see this sort of thing after a game.

Am I still pleased though? Abso-bloody-lutely. MW2 is one of the best games I’ve ever played, I just don’t think I’ll be busting a gut to still play it when COD7 is released by Treyarch next November.

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