Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 XBox 360 Review - www.impulsegamer.com -
Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3
Reviewed by
Edwin Millheim
on
Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 XBox 360 Review In the end of it all Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 delivers the goods, though one wonders if even the ravenous fan base will be pleased for much longer unless we see a bit more revitalization in the franchise.
Rating:
4.3

Gameplay 8.5
Graphics 9.0
Sound 8.0
Value 9.0
Distributor: Activision
Classification:
M15+
Review Date:
Nov 2011
Reviewer:
Edwin Millheim

8.6


Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3

All the ingredients are there for a fine soufflé of gaming goodness. Though some of the ingredients may not be as fresh as they should be, it’s starting to show a lack of freshness. How much longer can the franchise go on with the same recipe? Yet again the entrenched fan base has helped the game sell a staggering more than $400 million on its first day of sales. That’s both in the United Kingdom and United States. Pretty much blasting last year’s record like a daisy cutter going off. Shareholders in Activision are celebrating I am sure with wine and roses, Champaign and caviar.

After the dust clears over the initial frenzy to get the game, and don’t get me wrong it is a fine franchise and I am a fan and fellow player as well…but this time around it almost feels like this time around things are only slightly better, coming in like Modern Warfare 2.5. Or a sophisticated Add on, though it still delivers the goods.

This direct sequel to Modern Warfare 2 continues the story in its grand crazy over the top action set pieces which have the player sitting there with mouth agape in wonder of it all. It delivers what it promises, action, action and more action. Again jumping around and playing as different characters bringing some interesting situations that are the stuff of action adventure stories and movies and globetrotting on a grand scale. While some games are better at hiding the fact that you have little choice in where you go and what you do, it never really seems to be much of a choke point for this series. You know it’s linear, but what a ride!

In this latest venture Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3, we pick things up where we left off in the last game. Mere hours after taking out General Shepherd, Captain Price and Nikolai evacuate “Soap” MacTavish who was critically injured. Taking their fallen comrade to a location they get him some medical attention. The location is far from being safe as Vladimir Makarov sends teams to the location to finish up the loose ends. As if it was not going nuts on the crazy action meter already, things get ratcheted up from there. The visuals and destructive action that takes place is tried and true Call of Duty signature action.

Graphically the game has stayed up with itself, improving things even just a little bit on each outing. The games graphics are dead-bang beautiful. This is a game everyone that had a hand in creating can be darn proud of what they have created. Each level is full of spectacular visuals in a nonstop action adventure. The action and the spectacular visuals hit the player with a machine gun precision that takes the breath away.

I am happy to say that the attention to high quality gaming also extends to the sound of the game. Voice acting is delivered with just the right reality; the actors are clearly living in the moment. What else can be expected? I mean really? With such actors as Tobey Maguire, Christopher Meloni, Corey Stoll, Christian Coulson, Roman Varshavsky, and Troy Baker lending their passionate portrayal of the characters to this engrossing storyline brings it all to a new level of greatness in gaming. It just goes to show, with the right voice direction, and the actors that can deliver the performance what can be done in a game. The voice acting also is excellent in the communications chatter also.

Then the sound effects wrap you up and make it such a complete package. It’s the little things the crunch of boots on the ground, the sound of an electric motor, the rattle of a fence and then of course the bark of gun fire and the cracking snap of bullets as they wiz past and the explosions, all have the mark of a Hollywood blockbuster. Couple this up with the big budget sounding orchestral sound track and you have a real winner, all though I have found times where the sound track drowns out the dialog with no way to lower the music track at all.

Gameplay is improved some would say significantly from the last game. As noted earlier on the single player game places the players in several different roles and characters throughout the game. With several twists in the storyline, it helps a lot to get to see these events and how they affect the big picture from so many different points of the story. Not to worry though, even if you never played the previous game, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 does a good job of showing some of the back story and giving a rundown of events that took place without degrading or slowing the pace of the story line.

Depending on the level of difficulty you choose to engage in, the game can be a short 5 hours to maybe up to 10 hours in game play. Here is the thing, the difficulty levels give it enough of a different feel that playing it through again at a different level makes it feel all fresh and new. The highest level of course is much more unforgiving and players may find themselves getting killed a lot. The formula still stands as a fast paced thrill ride of different experiences. From underwater missions, to bringing down the hurt using a drone, manning a turret on an attack helicopter, saving hostages, breach and clear rooms, interrogations, it’s changed up just enough to be somewhat new, though the game franchise is so darned addictive you can’t help but want your fix.

Spec Ops’ Mission mode is back. Letting players team up with a friend locally or online, there are 16 new time trials and objective based missions, all of it entertaining to play, very well done developers. There is also an independent rank system stemming from Special Ops, from both Survival and Mission modes and are based on the rank progressions found in multiplayer. Kill streaks have been tweaked out to reward different play styles and skill levels. These are covered in Strike Packages; three of them are in the game covering: Specialist which is geared for the expert players amongst us. Additional perks are rewarded as the player progresses in a Point streak, but those perks only last until the players’ character dies. The Support Strike Package has Point streaks but they do not chain together, on the flip side their streaks do not reset to nothing on death. As the name implies these are based on Support, such as calling in UAV, SAM Turrets and such…you get the idea. Then of course there is Assault which perhaps is the majority of players. Focus here is on more direct attacks, they do chain together and the streaks reset when the character dies.

Multiplayer brings on those awesome game matches and customizations. Triumphant players can collect dog tags from killed players; in Kill Confirmed Mode it adds something a bit more personal with this, sort of a kill trophy. Team Defender mode finds a player grabbing the flag and the rest of the team protects the flag carrier for as long as possible. The longer they last the more points the team gets. Players will also enjoy the user generated match mode, this allows players to configure the modes however they want, and then share it over the Call of Duty: Elite online services with fellow players.

Two-player Co-op Special Ops Survival Mode is here in a big way. It includes 16 new objective missions and a new Survival Mode. Playing with another player or solo play against waves of enemy it’s relentless.

Then there is of course the option to join Call of Duty: Elite the online multiplayer oriented service dedicated to the franchise with lifetime statistics across all of the games. Some social networking, competitions, a mobile app and Facebook is integrated, so players can keep up with friends on all their Call of Duty accomplishments.

In the end of it all Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 delivers the goods, though one wonders if even the ravenous fan base will be pleased for much longer unless we see a bit more revitalization in the franchise. It will be very interesting to see what the developers come up with next. For now it’s on top, and the franchise has a long way to fall, but not this day.

Have fun, play games.
Edwin Millheim
Impulse Gamer






 
 



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