The blockbuster series returns! Can you stop Makarov?
Modern Warfare 3 offers up some intense action in all of its modes. Whether you’re continuing the story to stop World War III and take down Makarov, taking on the many Spec Ops or survival missions, or just ranking up in multiplayer, Modern Warfare 3 proves to be the complete package for fans. From the main menu, you have three different options to choose from, so I thought I would separate my review into three sections as well:
Modern Warfare 3 doesn’t really differ from the previous COD path, but that’s fine. You know what you’ll be getting here—the crazy action set pieces and 5 hour campaign wraps up things nicely with Soap, Captain Price, Makarov, and the many new players introduced throughout the campaign. There’s one moment where you’ll be asked whether you want to skip or play a controversial section, and there will be big moments around every corner. It’s still incredibly to fun to play, but Modern Warfare 3 doesn’t try anything new in terms of the campaign. If you have friends who want to know what Call of Duty is all about in terms of the story, you’d probably be fine loading up any of the missions. Action is well paced, and at 60fps, you’ll never have to worry about slowdown even during the most intense moments the game brings. I liked the campaign a lot, but at least for me it’s not the main attraction to Modern Warfare 3.
Spec Ops is extremely fun. Taking place at certain moments of campaign missions, you play out scenarios where you have to complete specific goals in hopes of getting a 3-star rating. All of these can be played with up to two players, and there are even two missions where you must have a partner to proceed. Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer games have promised that besides new content for multiplayer, Spec Ops will receive DLC as well so there will be more missions once you get all of the initial stars.
The other side of Spec Ops is the new survival mode. Most games seem to have this type of mode nowadays, but like Halo's Firefight, Spec Ops Survival mixes in its own twist to the mode. With a separate ranking system from multiplayer, you're able to unlock new gear as you take on an endless waves of enemies, who constantly increase in variety and difficulty. Most beginning waves will consist of slow-moving enemies wielding shotguns, and eventually you could end up fighting off dogs with C4 attached to them, Juggernauts with riot-shields, and helicopter—all at the same time. Besides holding off the enemies, you'll have access to a weapon, explosive, and air-support shop, which can really help in the later waves.
Survival can only be played with two players which is a bit of a letdown, but its still fun nonetheless.
The Multiplayer system we've enjoyed for years is back and better than ever. In Modern Warfare 3, there are 10 levels of prestige, and level 80 is now the cap. There are new and returning weapons to use, as well as new equipment, perks, and killstreaks. Speaking of those, the way you earn killstreaks differs a bit in this game. Racking up kills is still a good way to earn streaks, but you can now earn them with points, which changes things up quite a bit. Another new element to multiplayer is the strike packages, which feature various perks in each package. Assault, Support and Specialist all feature various killstreaks, and offer up different ways to unlock them. I usually stick with support, as you can still progress to earn your streaks even after you've been killed.
New modes help even out the multiplayer and one of my new additions is Kill Confirmed. This mode is similar to team deathmatch, only you must collect a dog-tag that your enemies drop after death. It can become a race to collect them, as a teammate of the enemy could snatch it before you, denying the kill for your team.
Multiplayer is everything you expect it to be and more, and allows for some private match madness by giving you plenty of options to choose from, including match types from Black Ops such as Gun Game.
When it does get fully operational, Call of Duty Elite will allow you to extend your multiplayer experience by offering up stats of your games, heatmaps, the ability to create clans, and compete for prizes provided you opt in on the $49 annual subscription service. That's almost the cost of Xbox Live gold, but Elite will also give you 20 pieces of dlc, and will give you content faster than waiting for the traditional map packs.
Overall, Modern Warfare 3 is the complete package. The multiplayer will be played for ages, as we wait another 2 years for Infinity Ward to return with their next Call of Duty. It's a great game, but one that won't super wow you if you're a Call of Duty veteran player.