This review is intended for the Xbox 360 version of Modern Warfare 2. The scores given in this review do not reflect the overall PC or PS3 versions.
Published by: Activision
Developed by: Infinity Ward
Genre: First-Person Shooter
US: November 10, 2009
There are many games that try to mimic Call of Duty, but none can manage to pull off the same hectic game play and presentation. It’s no surprise that Modern Warfare 2 has already broken sales records. The hype for this game was intense, the only question is if it lived up to it or not.
Well rest assured my friends, this game not only lives up to the hype but it shatters it into pieces. You’d think for a series like Call of Duty with the sheer amount of games they have put out, it would start to fall flat. Infinity Ward manages to keep the game feeling fresh and exciting throughout all these years.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 gives players a series of things to accomplish throughout your play through. You’ve got the standard campaign, a deep multiplayer mode and a newly added Spec Ops mode which essentially takes pieces from the campaign and makes them into challenges you can complete on your own or with a friend. Simply put, you cannot and will not be disappointed with any of these modes, they all offer several hours of playtime and enjoyment.
Get Ready For Hell
If you’ve never played a Call of Duty game before you can only expect the best when it comes to controls. Everything is exceptionally tight and responsive. This is crucial as many of the games elements require quick and decisive movements that could not be performed with sloppy controls. It leans towards more of an arcade style shooter but some of the elements can feel very realistic such as aiming through the sights (which is a staple now of the CoD Series). You will learn quickly in this game and come to love how it handles in under a half hour.
Taking a deeper look into the campaign you will find that not much has changed from the first. Many of the missions are jam packed with action sequences you have come to know and love. Although, I am finding that even with some of the suspenseful and intense scenes that you will play through it's starting to lose some of its edge. I feel like the first modern warfare blew me away more. This could be because I’ve come to expect it from these games. I am betting if you never played a Call of Duty before you would think the opposite.
What is great about the campaign is that the missions offer lots of variety. You do not play as the same solider throughout the entire campaign. You will switch between countries and solders after every level. This keeps the scenery and other aspects of the game fresh. No level will feel entirely the same. For instance one level you will be scaling an icy mountain and shooting down baddies from a snowmobile while the next mission you will be in Brazil running through the streets chasing after a kingpin.
To put this games story in laments terms - it sucks and will confuse you to death. The amount of things that happen and the quick transitions will make the story very hard to follow. Near the end of the game you will probably find yourself beyond confused, but you probably won’t care. I had to replay some of the campaign in order to follow the events that happened to better understand it. Once you finally do put the pieces of the story together you probably won’t be glad you did. It’s really not that great.
Even still, you’ll be having a lot of fun with the campaign and you’ll be sadly disappointed when the game comes to a close so promptly. You can easily finish the campaign in less than 5 hours when playing on regular difficulty. There is no doubt that the campaign should be longer, but at least what you do play is fun and worthwhile. The campaign is also good for another play through on veteran for achievements.
Every level feels fresh
Spec Ops is one of my favourite additions to the call of duty series. Gears of War 2 and Halo 3:ODST were on the right track when they made their horde and firefight modes. Modern Warfare 2 expands on modes like that by offering 25 different challenges that can be completed with a friend. Challenges will test you on your stealth, survival, and assault skills. Each missions can be completed on a certain difficulty which the higher the difficulty the more stars you will earn. The more stars the higher the bragging rights and missions you unlock. Completing these challenges on veteran will take some serious teamwork.
Missions are creative and original. For example in one mission you will have a buddy on the ground and another in a helicopter. You have to cover your buddy on the ground by blasting threw enemies with your machine gun until he makes it to the rally point. The amount of dedication and focus you can muster to beat these missions on veteran is unbelievable, I’ve never been in so much communication with my friends before. As far as I’m concerned spec ops is a shining example of a game play mode that should be added into most games.
Last but not least is the selling point of the CoD series – the multiplayer. Much has changed since MW1 and for the better too. For those that are unfamiliar the system plays off of levels. The more games you win and people you kill the higher your level will become. You can unlock different items like scopes and guns. You also get to choose between different perks such as “steady aim” or extending the explosiveness of your grenades. You can form your classes into pretty much anything you wish which gives you a lot of variety for your play style. The balance of the game has changed greatly for the better, especially when it comes to kill streak rewards. Now you have to choose between 3 specific rewards. No more endless abilities to use the more kills you get. They’ve added a lot more rewards though such as gunning down people from an AC gunship which is very cool. All in all, you really have to play a lot in order to unlock everything. There is such a wide variety of guns and attachment you will want to collect. The game keeps rewarding you the longer you play which will keep you interested for a long time.
The graphics are nothing to scoff at
The maps have been designed carefully and in my opinion are much better than MW1. In addition to several well thought out maps there are several game types. All of which provide a great deal of fun. The better you get the more intense you can play. Hardcore game types try to take out the more arcade style elements of the game and make you rely purely on teamwork and good aim. If you are more than a casual gamer and enjoy competitive gaming this will be right up your alley.
The aesthetics of Modern Warfare 2 can be jaw dropping. They’ve defiantly improved from the first. The lighting effects and viewing distances are awesome. They’ve got some really nice scenery and solider models. Everything is highly detailed and the best part is that it runs exceptionally well on xbox. The entire game is appeasing to the eyes. The sound is also unmatched, in many situations you will have to rely on your ears to get you out of a mix. When you hear enemies reloading or bullets wising from behind it makes the game more realistic and engrossing.
For a series that has been going on forever it doesn’t skip a beat. New and old players of the series can get sucked into the game play quickly and not look back for a long time. So many things have been improved or added to make this one of the best game purchases you could make all year. My only complaints rely mostly on the campaign mode. Not only is the story hard to follow but it literally goes all over the place. The campaign is also extremely short and most of the events won’t impact you as much as the first game. Ultimately, with endless hours of spec ops and team deathmatchs at your fingertips you won’t be disappointed with this purchase.
Presentation - 8.0/10
Follows the same style of the first Modern Warfare. Story is very confusing. Unmatched action sequences.
Graphics - 9.5/10
Beautiful scenery, high detail, great lighting - so much to make this game appeasing to the eyes
Sound - 10/10
Great sound effects and on par voice acting. Compliments all aspects of the game
Game Play - 9.0/10
Tight and responsive controls. Spec Ops is a wonderful addition. Deep and rewarding multiplayer. So many fun things to do hours will fly by like minutes
Lasting Appeal - 9.0/10
The campaign won’t last long, but it’s good for another play through. Beating all the spec ops missions on veteran will keep you busy, and don’t forget about the multiplayer. You could be playing this game for a long time
9.3/10 - Outstanding
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Edited by Plasmic Fury, 17 November 2009 - 08:35 AM.