Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare was not the easiest gaming experience of my life. First I had to prove my age, and then I had to battle with technical issues. Is CoD4 really worth the trouble, considering the glut of First-Person Shooters on the market? In a word – MAYBE!
As a true journalist, I have to admit my bias. I’m not a big FPS guy. It’s hard for me to get excited about another military shooter. Call of Duty 4 is far from original. I think the number “four” in the title might have been the first clue. Plus, the Battlefield series was pretty impressive to me. One could easily pigeonhole CoD4 as a Counterstrike clone, with flashier graphics. It’s not the concept behind CoD4 that makes the game unique. It’s the feeling. This game grabs you and it shows you a deeper side to gaming.
Normally, I’ll play games like Halo. I’ll run around with a rocket launcher, painting the map with human blood. The violence was comical, unrealistic. That’s not the case with Modern Combat. The experience was a bit too real. I actually stopped and thought of the horrors that must be going on in reality. CoD4 was so good, I felt bad for playing it. To me, this is just a game. While on the other side of the world, US & British forces are fighting terrorists and insurgents for real. I could take my headset off and turn off my computer at any time. Real soldiers don’t have that luxury.
Yet, when I finally stopped playing CoD4, it did take a toll on me. I would close my eyes, but I could still see the crosshairs. When you hear bullets whizzing past your head – in stereo sound – it’s a creepy feeling. The audio effects in CoD4 are pretty amazing. I could feel the explosions. The noise recreated the chaos of war. It was as close as I wanted to get to the real thing.
Multiplayer is typical to other FPS games, but CoD4 adds character development. You can unlock rewards as you gain experience points. This gives you access to other weapons and options. You can even create your own class, if you enjoy running around with a sniper rifle and a rocket launcher. The weapons are based on modern hardware, right down to night-vision goggles and an array of sidearms. There are also challenges to complete, such as killing players in a certain way or completing a specific action. Yet, I question a game that rewards you for jumping to your death.
Single player is pretty good too. The story is dark and depressing, kinda like the evening news. If you’re into a gritty and gory graphics, you’ll enjoy the cinematics and gameplay of solo missions. While the AI is no slouch, single player is much easier than going against human opponents.
The Bottom Line – Call of Duty 4 is an amazing game. While I had to resolve technical issues to make the game playable, I was impressed with the quality of the game. The graphics and sound effects are realistic… too realistic. I play games to take a break from the troubles of real life. CoD4 reminds you that we live in turbulent times.
Photics Rating: 4.0 / 5.0