When Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare was released in 2007, many were shocked how much Infinity
Ward's rendition of war had surpassed the previous installments of World War II warfare. With modern weaponry, a fresh new storyline, and a multiplayer system that blew almost every other game's multiplayer out of the water: Infinity Ward became one of the most known developers overnight with one of the biggest games of the decade. Now two years later, Infinity Ward releases what is to be the most anticipated sequel in years, and boasted the largest pre-order sales of any game of any time. But can this self-proclaimed prolific sequel rise up to the occasion as the most popular game of our generation?
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 comes into the gaming scene with a bit of a chip on its shoulder, having
to rival it's 2007 predecessor is a task no game would want to encounter. So Modern Warfare 2
will have to wow people in ways no one has ever seen. It all starts with the Campaign mode: which continues [somewhat] with the story of Soap MacTavish and other characters of the MW
lore. If you haven't played the first one, don't worry; MW2's story doesn't need much of the first one to continue in. The story goes as so: a guy named Makarov is trying to become filthy rich through blood money while trying to get America and Russia to pull off WWIII, as long as he's got money, he doesn't care. The story isn't portrayed too well, but the visuals and scenery of the story is unreal. Easily some of the best graphics I've seen on a console and the range of places you go looks like a checklist of what places can they go on Earth that are the nicest looking, but could pertain to the story. From the snowfields of Russia to the warm backlands of Brazil, to the final frontier of Space; no place is left behind in this world-rounding quest to stop all mankind of killing each other. The campaign is an exhilarating experience that one must play to enjoy and words will not give it justice, but this campaign also has some serious problems.
First off, the campaign mode has more twists than M. Night Shyamalan. I don't think I can count on one
hand how many twists are in the campaign. It makes the story VERY hard to keep up with when they all start piling up to where there's one every hour or so. The story is gripping and wants you to continue with a heavy pace, but when plot twist #3 shows up, then #5 follows shortly after, you start to question where you're going and why you're doing what you're doing. Couple twists too many in my book. Also, the campaign is mighty short, I'm talking about 5-6 hours short on Regular. The harder difficulties do add a couple hours, but it still feels over too quick and is possible of completing in one sitting. [I did so.] You go to so many places in the Campaign, but some venues you'll only spend about 10-20 minutes on, which feels like a serious waste of time when you see how pretty and detailed these venues are. You want to continue to be around these places and continue playing, and then once you complete the one to two objectives on that venue: you travel halfway around the world and never head back! I'm sure Infinity Ward wanted to show off their graphical accomplishments in the form of multiple settings around the world for the player to wreak havoc, but if Modern Warfare 2
took the time to slow down and induce some more character development and actual tactics in the storyline: it would've benefited from that majorly. Even though short, MW2
can't be hassled for its voicework, which is fantastic and has some recognizable voices like Keith David and a couple others. The sound of callsigns and explosions, gunfire and communication chatter makes you feel ever closer into the fray of battle and really throws you into the game.
Once you're done with Campaign, and you don't want to sink your teeth into the Multiplayer? Then you
can check out Modern Warfare 2
's newest addition: Spec Ops. Spec Ops is a scenario-based side project that allows you and a friend to play out parts of the Campaign mode, parts of the first Modern Warfare
, and some levels made specifically for Spec Ops. These levels are based on a star level, grabbing up to 3 stars a level for exceptional work, up to 69 stars. Though there are plenty of them, some are hit-and-miss, and some are really easy to incredibly hard. Piloting an AC-130 to protect your teammate is an exhilarating experience that will really get your teamwork skills going. Being 2 against 40 in a closed area with Riot Shields hauling towards you: not so fun. I found this piece of the game felt more like an after-thought instead of a fleshed-out part of the game that people could replay like much of the Call of Duty
franchise has been known for.
But you've been wanting to see how the multiplayer stacks up to the original Modern Warfare right?
Well I can tell you that Modern Warfare 2
's multiplayer does not disappoint, but also raises the bar on replay-ability and straight addictive personality of the Multiplayer facet. Modern Warfare 2
starts off with having the highest level count of FPS's to date, putting players to reach 70 levels before hitting MAX level. With the amount of these levels comes more weapons, and there are some very interesting and fun-to-use weapons. The secondary weapon slot has gotten a large increase with Machine Pistols, Shotguns, and much more to add to your loadout. The main weaponry has seen many changes as well: the .50cal Sniper Rifle is now a starting weapon when it used to be the MAX level unlock, and the stock of weapons has almost doubled since Modern Warfare
. New weapons include at least 2 new weapons to every class of weapon, giving much more variety this run-through, and also more to unlock for the completionist in all of us. Along with new weaponry comes new Perks and Death Perks. New Perks include but are not limited to: Scavenger, which allows you to pick up discarded weapons to receive more ammo; Cold-Blooded, which makes you undetectable; and many others. The Death Perks are Perks granted to players who are under a Deathstreak, these Perks allow a player to copy a player's build, give a temporary health boost, or even grab the much known Martyrdom, which you can only get for sucking, and Thank God for that. Also new are the customizable killstreaks, where you can jam UAVs, pilot an AC-130, or drop a Nuke on the map: there are about 20 different killstreaks that you can use on the battlefield.
For 70 levels, you need a lot of experience, and Modern Warfare 2 has near limitless ways to gain
experience in a match. Experience is given for: kills, longshots, headshots, knife kills, crouch shots, prone shots, etc. You'll get experience for sprinting long distances, blowing up cars, jumping off buildings; there are hundreds of ways to level up, which gives an incredible amount of variety to play out the multiplayer in so many different ways. With 70 levels to unlock, players are going to need some good maps to play in order to enjoy the grind, and much like Modern Warfare
: there are hit and misses. Maps like Sub Base and Rundown cater to all kinds of builds for players, while maps like Quarry and Favela only cater to certain builds which everyone will use and will gimp players to running builds they are not good with. Even with the good and bad maps, Modern Warfare 2
boasts around 15-20 playlists that give players a piece of every kind of multiplayer to CoD fans: CTR, Plant the Bomb, Hardcore Deathmatch: there's a playlist for every FPS player and then some. Once you're done getting to level 70, you can Prestige up to 10 times for extra bragging rights, and to show that this game ultimately rules your world.
Modern Warfare 2 was boasted as the best First Person Shooter of all time, and while I agree it is
certainly one of the best, some of the problems really hold it back from being the up-all-end-all best of the best. I love Modern Warfare 2
's multiplayer on XBox Live, but the singleplayer is too short and the Spec Ops doesn't feel like it was given the same love as its counterparts. I know hundreds of my hours will be put into Multiplayer, but Modern Warfare 2
needs to be more than just the online facet, a great game is not one great piece and few other pieces tacked on to complete it and make sure the $60 price tag is worth it; a great game has a Campaign worth working on for a couple days and has the ability to continue enjoying it after I've beaten it. A great game has extra gametypes that actually feel like they were worked on just as much as the rest of the game: say Gears of War 2
's Horde Mode; Horde Mode felt fleshed out and ended up being the gametype I played the most, because it felt just as worked on as the other two parts of the game. infinity Ward could have learned a thing or two from other developers on how to create a complete game; but for now, they will be known for their addictive multiplayer facet, and having the best non-completed game on the market.
- + Gorgeous Graphics
- + Addictive Gameplay
- + Unlimited Online MP
- +/- Short but Sweet Campaign
- - Hit or Miss MP Maps
- - Plot Impossible to Understand
- - SP/SO Not Good Enough