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Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

May 19, 2012

So I finally got around to another one of Christmas 2012’s must-have games. There’s a reason I left this one until last.

ImageI’ve never been truly impressed by Modern Warfare. When I say that, I mean, I wasn’t impressed with Modern Warfare 2 when I played it last year. As far as I can tell, MW3 has done anything new or different since it’s predecessor. If I’d reviewed MW2, apart from an update on the plot, this would be a copy+paste job.

Anyway, on with the review.

Modern Warfare 3 picks up where Modern Warfare 2 left off. Thanks to the actions of Makarov, freelance terrorist and sociopath, Russia decides to invade the rest of Europe…I’m not quite sure since they had just pulled out of a full-scale invasion of the USA. But you can’t afford to think logically with these games – it spoils the fun. You play the part of a near-anonymous US soldier, part of the forces repelling the Russian invasion. Meanwhile, Price and MacTavish are hot on Makarov’s tail, determined to take him down. You play Yuri, who goes along with them. Stuff happens.

The game is split between the large-scale American forces, fighting their way through the remnants of various European cities, and Price’s crack squad going through slums, castles, drug dens, etc. In the former, the enemies are either so miniscule that you can’t tell where to shoot (Or more likely, who just shot you in the head) or they are close, but indistinguishable from your allies, since everyone wears fatigues in the same dishwater brown. In contrast, the latter has a better sense of direction, scale and you know who the enemies are – everyone except the guy in the hat.

I’m not sure whether the plot was non-sensical or whether I just didn’t care. What I do know is that the campaign only took me five hours to complete. And I’m not very good. Five hours?! Flash games last longer than that! The only difference between difficulties is just how impossible the headshots against you are. Disappointing.

There is a lot of action and excitement in the game but you’re made to do it. Such as jumping off a building, or beating a guy up, or clambering up a ledge. They’re all mandated by pressing buttons, like if you were watching an action film but had to keep pressing play to forward the plot. I wouldn’t call it engaging. I may have to press a button but it’s still a cutscene.

There are guns. I couldn’t really tell the difference between them.

I’ve heard that much of MW3‘s value comes from its multiplayer modes. Great, but it still has to stand on its own when my housemates aren’t around. It just feels lazy. They’ve taken a generic plot, generic settings and generic characters (With the exception of Price and McTavish – Who you don’t get to play as) and produced a wholly generic game.

The inevitable next installment will have to do a lot to rouse me from my coma.

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