After spending a week in the most modern of warfares, Adam Marcey has come back from the frontlines. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is here, people. How does the latest Call of Duty stack up to its record-breaking predecessors?
Well I’ve been stinking up the Modern Warfare 3 servers for a little over a week now. Sometimes, I’m terrible at this game, and I think the F-word comes out of my mouth at least once every 2 minutes. Perhaps I’m just not the quintessential gamer I think I am, or maybe some people just play a whole lot more than I do (I’m talking to all of you folks who are almost on your second prestige level. C’mon already, the game’s only been out a week!). But anyhow, all lack of skill aside, I’m going to break this up into two parts: the single player campaign and the multiplayer/special ops cooperative mode.
|Stuff blows up good.|
Now, I played Modern Warfare 2 a lot more than the first, mainly because I rarely bought a game and played it as soon as it came out. I didn’t really experience Modern Warfare all that much before the release of the sequel. I think I made it to the 4th Prestige level in MW2 multiplayer before I moved onto other games, and it was all that more addicting than the first. The campaign wasn’t quite as exciting as the first Modern Warfare, but it still held its own. And who could forget the infamous airport massacre? Wow, that was a bold move on the developers and I appreciate it when people try to push the envelope when it comes to decency, but that level was just gratuitous and insane. But however you feel about it personally, I’m sure it’s something you’ll never forget.
|It's about to go down.|
I don’t really have the time to waste writing about Black Ops. I would rather forget that it was even released.
So here we are again, wasting hours of our precious lives with another Modern Warfare release. I’ve played through the campaign on Hardcore, and it clocked in around 7 ½ hours, about what you’d expect. I’m doing a second play-through on veteran difficulty to unlock the achievements, and it is HARD. It typically goes like this: I die 5-10 times at the same spot, finally figure out what I’m doing wrong, make it through, run to the next fight, and then repeat the process. They’re not kidding when you select veteran difficulty on the menu and it says “you will not survive.” At least I had fair warning. Now this campaign is still good, but it’s not great. The story picks up almost immediately after the events on MW2 where the Russians are in full-fledged war with the West. Once again, the Russian terrorist Makarov is playing behind the scenes and manipulating events, and you play as either Frost from Delta Force or Yuri with the recently disavowed Task Force 141 along with Price and Soap. There are definitely a few intense moments, and a pretty entertaining level where you’re playing as Frost and you have to hijack a Russian submarine, forcing it to surface with C4 planted on the side while it’s still underwater.
Another intense moment comes along while you’re playing as a Russian secret service agent on board the presidential plane, which is hijacked by Makarov’s men. As you’re fighting your way out with the president in tow, the plane takes a sudden dip and you become involved in a zero-G gunfight. Pretty nifty. But quite honestly, I didn’t experience any real “Oh shit!” moments. To me it seemed as though the campaign was just filler for the multiplayer, and a lot of it just seemed like you were doing the same thing over and over. A lot of the game is fought in the streets of major cities, like New York and Paris, which was quite repetitive. There were also a few levels fought in Africa but it didn’t really add to the experience that much. All in all, this campaign is the weakest in the Modern Warfare series. It does, however, do a good job at tying everything together during a flashback sequence showing how Yuri fits into the story. There’s also another “you can skip over the offensive content” disclaimer, and I feel the skipped over content isn’t quite as bad as the airport massacre, but you’ll still probably be able to pick out the scene they’re talking about.
|Globe trotting. WW3 style.|
The multiplayer is exactly what you expect it to be, and there are a few new perks and kill streaks to keep it fresh. Also, there are three kill streak packages to pick from: assault, support, and specialist. The support package tends to have kill streaks that help your team, rather than punish the opposing team; you can drop ballistic vests for your team to pick up to reduce damage, you can select a UAV which shows the positions of the opposing team instead of just a red dot on the map, and you can call in an Osprey gun ship that drops care packages and provides over-watch to protect the packages. Also, your kill streak doesn’t reset with the support package selected. The assault package has some old staples like the predator missile, attack chopper and pave low, with a few new additions like a laser guided predator missile attack, a personal support chopper and a strafing run of 5 Apache attack helicopters. The specialist package allows you to add additional perks to your repertoire as you rack up kills, instead of giving you a one-time attack reward. There is also an impressive selection of personal weapons to choose from as you level up.
The multiplayer experience has improved a lot, and a new game mode called “Kill Confirmed” is pretty fun: in order for your kills to count towards your team score you have to collect the dog tags of your kills. I think in all of these respects the multiplayer experience is much improved. However, there are a few sub-par maps that are just cramped and confusing (remember the Rust map from MW2?), coupled with the fact that you can’t take more than 3 steps without getting shot in the head. Also, most of the maps are strikingly similar to the MW2 maps, so overall the maps don’t seem all that new. You also have to play as the African Militia on certain maps, which I find to be a little offensive. Do the developers realize what goes on in Africa? The voice-over when the round starts even says, “Butcher them. Show no mercy.” Really?
|Lots of turret sequnces.|
So to wrap things up, MW3 is a great game on its own, but the campaign falls short in comparison to its predecessors. The multiplayer experience is still top notch with a few additions, and just as addicting as before. When you put this game in your system, it’s like you never left the previous games. My personal feeling is that the game isn’t drastically different, but sometimes too much change isn’t necessarily a good thing.
Final Verdict: 4/5
Adam Marcey is KGB's resident BroDawg. Leave him some love in the comments!