Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Review (PC)
This time of year, every week is home to the release of a much-anticipated game. However, none of them can match the market power of the Call of Duty franchise. All summer, gamers have been treated to a marketing battle between EA’s Battlefield 3 and Activision’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. With the expectations of gamers and the Call of Duty community running high, it’s time to see if Modern Warfare 3 lives up to the hype.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 – PC (Reviewed), Playstation 3, XBox 360, Wii
Developer: Sledgehammer Games and Raven Software, Infinity Ward, Treyarch (Wii)
Release Date: November 8, 2011
MSRP: (Standard) $59.99; (Hardened Edition) $99.99
The Call of Duty series has come a long way since it began in 2003. We’ve gone from World War II to modern times, back to WWII, and even into Vietnam and the Cold War. The only constant is the insane amount of copies each installment sells. With Modern Warfare 3, we’re back into Infinity Ward’s vision of the series, and it picks up the story right where Modern Warfare 2 left off.
The world is being torn apart. There’s an ongoing war between the US and Russia spurred on by ultra-nationalists, and you’re going to try to clean things up. As is usual with a Call of Duty title, you’ll be switching between a few main characters as you progress through the story. All the characters you remember from previous titles are still here. Captain Price is here, along with his epic mustache, and the seemingly invincible Soap MacTavish makes his return, although you won’t get the chance to play as him this time around. Nikolai and Yuri are still teamed up with Price as he hunts down the mastermind behind the global hostilities, Makarov.
Don’t go into MW3 expecting a grand story. I’m sure you weren’t, but let’s be clear. This is a game about killing things and breaking stuff in the most efficient manner possible. You will wrap up the storyline that spanned the previous two Modern Warfare titles by the end of this game, but no one should pretend that this is a triumph of literature.
As you would expect from a Modern Warfare game, the campaign is a 4-5 hour journey through some amazingly large set pieces. You’ll do battle in places like the New York Stock Exchange, a Soviet submarine, aboard a plane aloft over Europe, in villages in Africa, and even through the streets of Paris. While the story isn’t any more coherent than previous Modern Warfare games, the set pieces are truly spectacular. You’ll fight your way through collapsed buildings, across bridges occupied by the enemy, and even through flooded tunnels in New York. It’s about 10 full action movies worth of stunts crammed into a 4-5 hour game experience.
As I said above, it’s basically what you expect from a Call of Duty game these days, but MW3′s campaign was still a letdown for me. I shouldn’t be too surprised, as this is the formula pretty much every military shooter follows these days, but I still found myself wishing for something more. This isn’t a problem unique to MW3, but it’s still disappointing that a series that once had one of the best campaigns in a first person shooter is content to simply phone in a bunch of set pieces that really don’t require all that much participation from the player.