Call of Duty returned with a story to tell this year, and damn what a story it was. It’s relevant, impactful, and not afraid to make the player question their own morals. The launch of Call of Duty Modern Warfare didn’t go off as smooth as it could have and it does have some technical issues despite being a gorgeous game. Let’s take a look at what works and what doesn’t quite hit the mark in Infinity Ward’s newest adventure.

Going Dark-

The campaign to Call of Duty Modern Warfare is wonderfully constructed and much like the original Modern Warfare is going to be one of this consoles legacy games, sure to be talked about for years to come. Modern Warfare’s story starts fast and tends to stay that way throughout. From the terrorists pulling up next to you on the streets of London, to the US embassy falling to extremists, to the prisons of Farah’s past there is action everywhere. So how does that make this Call of Duty any different than past entries?

Well for one thing players have dialogue choices at various moments in Modern Warfare. It’s not clear what the different branches could do to a situation but any chance to tell a terrorist “Fuck You” is a good dialogue choice. The heaviest choice I had in the game involved a terrorist we had encountered earlier in the campaign. Price and his men brought the terrorist’s family in front of him and were using them as a bargaining chip. The player has the option to not be apart of it and to skip the scene but I was interested in seeing what happened. Bags were placed on the man’s wife and child. Price told me to pick up the gun on the table, I grabbed it and pointed it in the family’s direction. The terrorist tried to dissuade me from doing anything and the arguments got more heated.

I figured I could shoot just above her head at the wall and it might freak the guy out enough to talk. I was surprised to hear the gun click empty as Price chuckled quietly to himself talking about how he wouldn’t just give me a loaded gun, just as he dropped some bullets on the table. As I am putting them in the gun the terrorist begins to talk telling us what we needed. Price then left me with a choice as to what to do.

I could do nothing. The man was tied to a chair, he might not escape before the police arrived. I could shoot his family and send him a message, but they really weren’t a part of this. Ultimately, I settled on shooting him for what he did at our embassy. Walking out of that room, I felt the weight of my choice settle in. What was even more rewarding was the character brought it up to Price later and it felt like a true growth for the character, seeing him come to terms with what he has to do to keep the world safe.

Context-

To put the above into a little bit of context: In the early moments of the game, it is established that the terrorist group from Urzikstan is behind the theft of a toxic gas in Russia. From there it sets off all the insanity in the campaign we talked about above. At one point it even gets the rebels you are helping fight the terrorists, on the bad side of the U.S. government.

During many moments in Modern Warfare’s campaign I was in awe because of how it tied elements and locations from the first Modern Warfare trilogy into it. There were simple times when we were running up an alley in the Middle East and I saw an arch way that looked like the one in Call of Duty 4. There were also times it was just a simple character introduction or alluding to the likes of Soap and Gaz. It was all superbly well written and I can not wait for the sequel. Even Shepard and Zakhaev made an appearance,  which got me hyped thinking about Modern Warfare 2’s possibilities.

Multiplayer (See the section, right there marked multiplayer? It’s even in bold lettering)-

During the beta for Modern Warfare the multiplayer felt tight and really cleaned up over past experiences. The spawns were still questionable at times but it felt like a lot of what had been plaguing the series for a while was being fixed. Upon release though that sadly doesn’t feel true any more. There were connectivity issues on launch, which I encountered early on this time unlike my experience in Gears 5. A massive amount of players couldn’t even access the main menu for the first two hours of the launch at least.

A few days later into the multiplayer experience and it felt like we were settling into the norm. Shotguns are mad overpowered, one to two tapping people from across the room. Quick scoping and camping on certain maps are appalling. Worst of all the glaring issue that seems to never dissipate, horrible spawns are still painfully present. Other issues are more visible in different modes such as kill streaks hindering Search and Destroy. There were many times the team just saved it until the end then hit us with what felt like 17 different kinds of air-based attacks.

Modern Warfare multiplayer isn’t all bad, the gun editing is actually enjoyable to do and kind of in-depth. The newer modes like Gunfight and Cyber Attack are uproariously addicting.  I’m interested to see what tweaks and balances come to the game over the course of its life leading into the next Call of Duty. Another quick mention here the game thankfully lets you shut out other players. You can turn off their voice and turn off the in-game text box which is fantastic because it silences an annoying aspect most multiplayer games suffer from, toxicity. Turning off the text box in other multiplayer games is a feature I would love to have.

Co-op Mode-

Modern Warfare’s Co-op mode only had one map available when I tried it out. The helicopter crashes into a campaign location in Urzikstan and players must grab weapons and dig in immediately to repel incoming forces. Each rounds get tougher especially towards the end, with mortars, heavy smoke, and suicide bombers all attacking the player. Drops occur once a round and help the player immensely by granting a turret, or various aerial support. This mode is wonderfully challenging and getting a group together to take it on is highly recommended.

The Nagging Errors-

I mentioned earlier how visually stunning Modern Warfare is. It also stutters a lot on my pc which is odd. My drivers were up to date and my computer is made of relatively new parts. The computer itself is only a little over a year old and yet still the game was stuttering during cutscenes. What’s strange is that it ran fine during the campaign gameplay itself, but would stutter and desync during cutscenes.

There was one instance on launch night where Modern Warfare froze my computer so bad that the power button wouldn’t shut it off. Perplexing me, even more, was the fact that my keyboard shut off. I never figured out what caused it as my computer didn’t overheat. I tried turning everything down and that didn’t improve my stuttering issue at all. My computer had auto-set everything in the game to high so dumbing it down should have helped.

Many players on Xbox One were reportedly also having crashing issues as well as a laundry list of other performance issues. The worry among players is that if a patch isn’t released soon consoles could be bricked.

Locking it Down-

To close it out, Call of Duty Modern Warfare has a powerful campaign with a massive amount of stand out levels. There were several I didn’t get to talk about. The level where players take control of young Farah as she and her brother have to sneak through an attack on their village as children. Every single instance of having to be stealthy and watch your shots around civilians. The level where Farah and her brother are Russian prisoners. This is such a well-rounded campaign that I can’t recommend enough. The multiplayer and general performance issues of the game drag it down a bit but this game still can’t be recommended enough. To say I am looking forward to seeing the formation of Task Force 141 and to see where the series goes next for Infinity Ward is an understatement.

Call of Duty Modern Warfare Review
What's Good
  • Beautiful Game
  • Gritty and Superb Story
  • Meaningful Characters and Ties to Original Trilogy
What's Bad
  • Horrible Cutscene Stutter
  • Server and Performance Issues
  • Multiplayer Hasn't Learned From Its Past at All
8.5Overall Score
Reader Rating: (1 Vote)
8.4

About The Author

Allen S
Editorial/Reviews Team, Manager

I started gaming when I was seven years old. I started my own game studio when I was twelve, went to school for game design. Now I work here and also on my own YouTube channel