Modern Warfare 3 Review

Modern Warfare 3 has come out; does anyone really care?

Wait, what’s that? $400 million opening week, huh? Highest preorder sales of any video game to date? On track to being highest grossing entertainment launch in the last 50 years? Well, then what the hell do I know?

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is the highest selling video game franchise per title capita (nothing could beat Mario or Zelda at this point, but with over 20 titles for each, can we really blame them?). Personally, I don’t understand it; been there, done that, right? Perks for gaining levels in your character, shooting your friends with well-placed shots instead of whittling down a health bar or an annoying shield mechanism, and of course, realistic scenarios adopted after interviews and observations of real life Special Forces operatives. Great once, amazing twice, does it work again? Begrudgingly, yes it does.

For those of you without a hi-def. television, you’re really missing out on what might be the most fluid and pretty graphics this side of cinema. The environments are almost completely interactive. What’s more, the enemy AI has intelligent, thinking responses that force the player to legitimately learn and get better instead of merely memorizing otherwise predictable attack patterns. For example, when someone is tracking an enemy and, without paying attention, shoots the wall instead, not only does a bullet hole appear in said wall, but any nearby foes will become alerted to your presence and coordinate an assault on your position.

The next important part of this game is the controls. And CoD:MW3 is not only completely responsive, but also ergonomically associated. The trigger button fires, a bumped reloads, your view is controlled with one stick, and your movement is controlled with another. Compare this to console first person shooters of yesterday, such as using different face buttons to operate your view and needing to hit the trigger button and action button simultaneously to cycle through your weapons backwards.

Please don’t take that last statement as an endorsement for any game over Goldeneye for the N64. Nothing is more psychologically satisfying than using the flamboyantly dressed Boris to drop an Oddjob using noob. But I digress.

One thing that truly sets this game series apart from other first person shooters; there is a storyline. This game picks up where the previous game left off, and it is a character driven story surrounding the characters that you have been using all along, right along with their support. The game, unfortunately, is linear. There isn’t a lot of opportunity to deviate from the set path, and there isn’t much you can do other than the immediate objectives presented before you. As a result, the campaign, though visually appealing and otherwise entertaining, is forgettable at best.

But if you are going to put down $65 of your hard-earned cash for a game like this, you aren’t in it for the campaign. If you want a game with a good, story driven campaign, you’d be better invested in something like Infinite Undiscovery or Final Fantasy 13. No, you’re in it to spend precious free hours killing your friends in a variety of game maps and game types. And of course, it delivers, in spades. With the new “kill spree” feature, such a wide variety of weapons and explosives and enough game options are made available that you and your friends will be exclaiming obscenities at one another for days and weeks to come.

Final verdict; Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 lives up to the hype. Anyone who is going to get the game already has it in their library – more than likely – and anyone not completely sold on the continuation of this story will probably want to pass on this. It’s a great game, but not a must own. 8.5 out of 10.

  • Chris Davis

    Good review Dan. I’ve officially switched to Battlefield 3, but I know about 90% of my friends will be playing MW2…I mean 3, or do I.