Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II Review
When it comes to Call of Duty, there is nothing quite like it when it comes to all out action. Whether you are calling in airstrikes during an online game of Domination or watching a spectacular campaign cutscene straight from a Hollywood blockbuster. Either way, you are in for one hell of ride!
Xbox, PS, PC.
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Modern Warfare II’s campaign is much the same as previous titles. It has all the hallmarks of a blockbuster action movie with the Call of Duty flair added to it. The campaign takes roughly 6hrs to complete with a gaggle of short missions being the focus. In the campaign you will be able to control different soldiers/operators from various locations across the world. However, while fun to play, it wasn’t my main focus of the game and got straight into multiplayer ASAP.
The meat and veg of Call of Duty for me is the multiplayer. When I first played the BETA of Modern Warfare II, I wasn’t all that impressed. I enjoyed it but was unsure if it was for me. However, when I first jumped into a game of Domination, I was instantly hooked! You have the usual Free-for-all, Team Deathmatch, Hardpoint etc…
Infinity Ward have also dropped in a 3rd person game mode which is a nice twist on the game. This mode has attracted a lot of Division players over to the game, and that’s a good thing. As they get to pit themselves against some real competition.
My main attraction to multiplayer is Domination, Ground War (think Battlefield), Hardpoint and Team Deathmatch. Modern Warfare II has 15 maps on offer with more on the horizon. There are quite a few maps with a vertical approach to its design. Each of the maps has their own quirks and favourite routes that most players will choose. With each corner you come to will almost have death waiting for you, unless you are quicker than the other guy.
The maps on Modern Warfare are a bit of hit or miss for me, however, I feel that this is the same for us all. We each have our favourite maps to play, mine would be Breenbergh Hotel, Crown Embassy and Al Bagra Fortress. One map that I’m not a fan of is Santa Sena Border Crossing, as everything feels tight and like a series of corridors. It’s how the map is designed, but I just find it too restrictive a times. There are predictable spawns which means you can get smashed again and again from players who have learned the patterns.
Crown Raceway is a beautiful map, with it taking place during a F1 race. As you are hunting down the other team in Domination or Hardpoint, you can hear the screaming cars racing past. The map sees you running through the pit lanes and across the paddocks where the teams have setup their bases. The map is set at night, and it just pops with the visuals, when you see certain areas with water reflections bouncing back at you. It’s visually beautiful, of course when you are not worrying about getting shot at. 😊
The only mode that is missing at the moment is Warzone. Now being labelled as Warzone 2.0, which releases on November 16 is something to look forward to as well, which a lot of players played almost religiously in the previous Modern Warfare title.
Progression through Modern Warfare II, especially within its weapons and Gunsmith 2.0 is a tad confusing to begin with. It’s not as simple as playing with your favourite weapon hoping to unlock everything. IF you want a certain grip or muzzle for instance, you will need to use a different weapon in order to unlock it. While it is a good feature that will make you try some of the weapons you would normally not use, it is a bitter of an annoyance too. For example, if you are looking to grab a SMG like the MP5 or Lachmann SUB as it’s named, you need to level up the Lachmann 7.62 & 5.56 weapons first. With the 7.62 being the Battle Rifle and 5.56 being an Assault Rifle.
There is an investment of time that is needed to be put in if you want all the attachments for your favourite weapons. Again, this option of an upgrade path is a bit hit-and-miss for me as in some situations you need to use a shotgun or LMG in order to unlock a particular attachment that you may want for your assault rifle. I can see why they have chosen this path as it will make more players try out a more variety of weapons. However, this should be more of an optional path than anything else.
The Gunsmith 2.0 system is a beefier affair than in the previous game. One big change is the ability to change your receiver, which can change your current weapon into a completely different one. One such weapon would be the AK47, which can be converted into the AK47SU to a SMG called VAZNEV-9K. However, it follows the same path as unlocking attachments, which will see you using completely different weapons in order to unlock the weapons that you need.
The Perks system has been completely overhauled in Modern Warfare II as well. You are now able to select four different Perks where two are given to you right from the off. The second two Perks you have are activated during the game as you fight. These are named Ultimate Perks and must be earned as you play.
Modern Warfare II has 19 Killstreaks to hand where each is awarded to you based on your kill count. They give you the option to choose 3 of the Killstreaks with each having their own uniqueness to them.
The difference this time when activating one is that you get to see your solider activate it via smartphone or tablet. This is a nice added touch; however, I have come across a bug a few times where you are stuck watching the tablet for 30secs. While you are left staring at the tablet, you are open to attack and ruining your current kill streak. Hopefully this will be rectified soon, as it’s a right pain when you are doing so well in a game.
The IW engine has some amazing visuals and sound to it in this iteration of Modern Warfare II. The lighting improvements along with some beautiful rendering of the backdrops show off a great looking title. In the campaign, the character models are almost hyper-realistic, and it gives you a sense that you are watching an action movie when certain cutscenes are in play. While it’s perfect, it is a beauty to behold when in action.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II is a top-tier shooter with a charming and fun campaign with an outstanding multiplayer. With buttery smooth gunplay and head-to-head meetings are intense. The Perk system revamp work well, while Gunsmith needs more refinements, it doesn’t detract what Modern Warfare II is at its heart. An adrenaline fuelled first person shooter that is hard to beat!
SSG Rating 9/10