Occasionally between our dose of indie and anime we do love a good FPS and when asked if I could cast my eye over the latest Call of Duty I said “why not” being I haven’t played the series since Black Ops 2. Is it still business as usual or has it reached its calling?. Read on soldier.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is the sequel to Modern Warfare from a couple of years ago and acts as a reboot to the story and setting that catapulted Call of Duty into the homes of everyone across the 360 and PS3 owning world.
As mentioned above, it’s been a while since I have played any Call Of Duty so coming into a sequel to a reboot I never played felt quite daunting, even more so when I was met with a rather awkward looking main menu screen, regardless I decided to work through the campaign in hopes I could get by without the knowledge of the first one and see where the cards lay afterwards.
The campaign follows classic characters Soap, Price and Ghost as well as newcomers Alejandro and Farah as they travel the globe trying to stop a terrorist called Hassan who’s made his bed with the Los Almas Cartel.
The story genuinely gripped me from the get go as it jumps between chasing Hassan and taking on the Cartel in a plot that intertwined and twisted in unexpected ways multiple times.
The cutscenes are brilliantly done and could almost pass as live action with just how good they look and the sterling performance given by all the voice actors not only in the cutscenes but with the in-game dialogue which helps to build the world but also the characters with a healthy dose of banter.
The campaign variety really married up well with the pacing, it clocks in at around 8 hours and the sheer amount of events that happen is staggering, one minute your planning covert ops in the streets of Amsterdam the next dangling from a helicopter upside down before jumping between trucks of a convoy.
Naturally there are plenty of opportunities to rain bullets down on your foes in almost shooting gallery fashion but it seems Infinity Ward understand that today that isn’t going to fly so have dug in deep with mission variety, I can imagine a certain Ghillie suit mission being a lot of gamers favourites as you crawl through fields and snipe from great distances with the advice of Price on how much bullet drop to factor in.
By the time the credits came up, I was ready for more, the set up for an eventual sequel is strong and the last mission managed to make me feel like the military version of John Wick. This is how I remember Call of Duty, it knew when to ramp the action up to 12 but also managed to have tension and light hearted moments.
Now this section is going to be quite brief, I’ve spent some time with the multiplayer but lack the experience with the series to really go into much detail about what’s new, what I will say though is the Ground War mode is a mode CoD has always needed!.
Ground War is essentially CoD showing Battlefield it’s ready to take the gamers back, large scale skirmishes with 5 flags to control, vehicles to control and just all out chaos, it reminded me so much of Battlefield that I was instantly drew to it and have spent most of my time online in this mode.
Of course you also have smaller traditional CoD match types and Search and Destroy is here, sadly no Zombies mode but there is a set of Co-Op missions for you to tackle, one focusing on stealth, another action and the final one being a survival horde style mode.
With more planned modes, maps and co-op missions plus the Battle Royale mode Warzone 2 on the horizon there is plenty of variation for players to sink hours upon hours into multiplayer shenanigans.
Weapons are fully customisable and unlocked slowly as you use them more and more, this is also the key to unlocking more weapons and streak rewards. This bit hasn’t fully settled with me as it feels really grindy and is riddled with “Bonus XP”, Daily Challenges and other stuff you would associate with Live Service games.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 really surprised me in how much I enjoyed it. I assumed it would be a brief playthrough and done but not only has its campaign stuck with me but I’m still really engrossed in the multiplayer.
It controls well, works with keyboard and mouse on consoles, has a 3rd person mode and offers some of the most fun I’ve had on an online shooter since Battlefield 1 and Titanfall 2.
I never thought I’d see myself fully engrossed in the path to prestige again but Infinity Ward have won me back by developing one of the most fun, accessible and diverse first person shooters I’ve played all year, it’s turned my head slightly from my bias of throwback boomer shooters and makes up for the disappointment I felt with Halo Infinite, this is how a modern AAA FPS should be and hopefully Activision can continue this momentum rather than phoning it again year after year.
A brand new Call of Duty that brings back the feeling of old Call of Duty
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