World War III - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 review

Date: 2011-11-11 14:00:00
The review was based on the PC version.

Apparently, it is only an addition to the multiplayer mode, but I cannot agree with this statement in any way. The single-player campaign was an important component of the next installments of the Call of Duty series from the beginning of its existence - I dare even say that it is more important than the online battles, which owe their enormous popularity to chance. Regardless of who did not start preparing a story about brave soldiers struggling with the overwhelming enemy, he always focused his attention mainly on it. The third game in the Modern Warfare series is no exception.

I must admit that I had some concerns that the dilapidated Infinity Ward studio would cope with the task. I was even convinced that the departure of key employees would somehow affect the final shape of the campaign and result in radical changes in the current formula. Fortunately, nothing like that happened. The easily rebuilt team boldly followed the path set by its predecessors and - which we can already confirm - found its way perfectly in the subject. The qualitative leap between the second and third installments of the series is practically imperceptible, which of course has its good and bad sides.

Let's start with the plot, heavily criticized in the predecessor. The new game continues the threads started in Modern Warfare 2 and definitely ends them - the authors did not leave any wicket to the possible "four". The Russians continue to conduct intense military operations in the United States, but their appetite is not diminishing. In MW3, the conflict also covers the countries of Western Europe - so World War III becomes a fact. The campaign traditionally takes us to various corners of the globe, where we perform strenuous tasks. Once, together with a group of brave soldiers, we make our way through the streets of devastated New York, only to land a moment later in Sierra Leone with a small commando unit. The story sticks together on the knee, but it is not of the highest caliber - anyone who remembers the "two" certainly knows what to expect.

Traditionally, the campaign is not long - on the standard level of difficulty, the whole thing can be completed in no more than 6 hours, and this only if we are not in a hurry anywhere. Nothing has changed in the very structure of individual missions. We are still running along the cleverly designed route, from which it is impossible to deviate from it in any way - it is prevented by both obstacles in the corridor and invisible walls. From time to time, we have to sit in the cabin of a vehicle or a helicopter and thus make our way through a fragment of the map. There is no question of greater freedom in controlling vehicles.

The gameplay is a script festival typical of the series. Programmed scenes push Modern Warfare 3 towards an interactive movie, the amount of non-standard events here is huge. Thanks to this solution, the game is a real pleasure to watch. Something is happening all the time, we are still surprised by something effective, and although some solutions have been copied alive from previous Infinity Ward productions, there is no shortage of new ideas - a good example is the mission called Turbulcje, the action of which takes place on board an emergency landing airliner.

The creators of the "three" showed again that in terms of spectacularity, the competition does not reach the heels of this series. What is happening during this very short campaign could be easily shared with five other productions. And although at times there is no realism in it, so what? Modern Warfare 3 can be compared to a typical Hollywood film production - if we limit ourselves to savoring its special effects, we will be delighted. On the other hand, if we start looking for meaning and depth in it, we can forget about having a good time.

Of course, the sheer volume of scripts also has its downside. It happens that some scenes fire up late, leading to downtime - in a lively action game, waiting longer for partners to graciously open the previously closed door is very frustrating. The programmed actions also mix the ranks of the opponents who have never sinned with intelligence in this cycle. A great example of such a curiosity are situations when our companions run ahead according to the program and we are left behind. Allies often leave behind their backs living enemies who can't decide who to shoot at.

I liked the campaign in Modern Warfare 3 and I will definitely remember it better than last year's Black Ops . In both cases, the authors exaggerated with fireworks, but I liked the crazy vision of World War III much more than the Bond adventures of heroes in the latest production of Treyarch. This is by no means a masterpiece, but simply a solidly tailored corridor shooter: effective, spectacular and raving. On the other side of the barricade, of course, there are disadvantages: frequent errors in scripts, brazen enemy respawn and the intelligence of the Stone Age enemies. Military fans will also complain about the complete lack of realism, and fans of visual effects about the antediluvian engine, which I will not compare to the competing Frostbite at this point.

A large list of shortcomings, however, does not change the fact that the campaign in Modern Warfare 3 is an extremely pleasant experience. The more I think about it, the more I am convinced that the phenomenon of this series is that it becomes more and more frivolous every year. When others try to provide a realistic picture of the war or try to shock players with shaking scenes (like in Homefroncie ), the creators of Call of Duty do their thing - they get in the car, damage the brakes in it, and then put the accelerator into the metal without worrying about whether on the way they will hit something or not. Modern Warfare 3 is another no-holds-barred ride, full of explosions, pathos, scenes with collapsing national symbols and Commando-style actions with Schwarzenegger. After all, in no other game you will not scrap four Hinds with a minigun in the first mission.

I really don't know how long Call of Duty will be able to keep going on the same pattern, but for now it doesn't look like anything will change in this regard. And guess what? It doesn't bother me, actually.

Krystian "UV Impaler" Smoszna

" Call of Duty has come a long way in recent years ..." - unfortunately, we will have to wait for such a start of the review of Infinity Ward's production. This year's edition of the best-selling series goes too close to the path set by Modern Warfare 2 . Thanks to this, on the one hand, we get a familiar product in which millions of players will feel at home, and on the other hand - a thick line that stands out from many good solutions from Black Ops .

Once again, we are dealing with an extremely dynamic online shooter, in which the corpse is thick, the distance from the closest enemy does not exceed a few meters, and the joy of casual killing is sometimes overshadowed by too much scrap metal flying over the map. The formula still works very well, but the distinct bloopers in the PC version and Activision's general lack of ambition cast a shadow over the overall network mode.

At first glance, it is difficult to distinguish Modern Warfare 3 from the previous part from 2009. Both in terms of technology, as well as the available equipment and game modes, only cosmetic changes have been made here. Graphics are definitely of secondary importance, but the engine, which a few years ago was strikingly backward in relation to the competition, resembles a gentleman in a midlife crisis. It seems to show how much it cannot, but everyone can see what it is. A small number of elements of the environment are destroyed: a light bulb will explode with sparks, the car will explode from a fragmentation grenade, and a chicken in the market will turn into bloody fluff from a lost ball. Not every game needs any destruction of the environment, but the stiffness and inviolability of the arenas is more and more noticeable every year, and PC owners will not use a fraction of the power of their hardware configurations.

In Modern Warfare 3 on PC you can clearly feel the limitations of the priority platforms for Activision. It is a pity that Infinity Ward gave up the "middle path" chosen by Treyarch in World at War and Black Ops and brought ideas that worked well on consoles alive to another environment. The unpopular matchmaking, of course, returns. On the one hand, it allows you to quickly join the game in the mode we are interested in, on the other - it does not even allow you to choose a map or play on specific rules. The effect is one - we keep wandering, hoping to find a game with the arena we like, and we keep our fingers crossed so that the enemies do not abuse the hated types of weapons. One cannot forget about breaking the rhythm of host migrations and the strange key to choose them - there are skirmishes in which only the host has a good ping. Support for dedicated servers does exist, but due to their exclusion from the ranking games - you will not get a single experience point there for your profile - they are terribly neglected for now. Suffice it to say that most of them were empty on Sunday at noon. No wonder, because character development is one of the most important multi elements in the Call by Duty edition.

On the occasion of the unlocking frenzy, however, one gets the impression that Modern Warfare 3 has unknowingly become a kind of parody of the series in this regard. During the first hours of the game, bonuses, decorations and notifications fall into an avalanche, and the characteristic melody informing you about the completion of a challenge is hit more often than a headshot. Suffice it to say that after 1.5 hours of fun I was already level 16, and then I reached the 25th rank later. Progress slows down over time, but the carrot is never so far away that it is not worth launching one more round ... and each match gives you thousands of experience points because the action takes place at a dizzying pace.

In the most popular modes - Team DM still at the top - the gameplay is dangerously close to total chaos. Once, we run into someone's back and send them into the sky in series, only to have the same opponent stick a knife in our back a few seconds later. Other times, we just die from a grenade thrown from the other end of the map. The end about 10 meters away.

Added to this is the impression that the boards are "shallower" compared to, for example, those from Black Ops . The best example is Resistance, which is practically limited to running around the streets connecting two semi-open areas - no ingenious connections between buildings, windows overlooking the enemy's alley, fighting for the floors of a key tenement house. One gets the impression that the action takes place only in the "level". Fortunately, a few larger maps are still included - such Seatown saves the game's honor and at the same time provides bloody clashes in narrow streets and long-range shootouts.