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Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (Xbox 360, 2007)
Price Range:$17.95 to $23.90
Developer Infinity Ward returns with its third full installment in the Call of Duty series (Treyarch having developed Call of Duty 3) with... Read More
Developer Infinity Ward returns with its third full installment in the Call of Duty series (Treyarch having developed Call of Duty 3) with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Eschewing the traditional WWII setting that has been the hallmark of the series, Call of Duty 4 takes on the more nebulous world of modern warfare. Nazi storm troopers and kamikaze pilots have been replaced by a patchwork group of terrorists and insurgents, and traditional WWII weapons have been jettisoned in favor of more than 70 modern armaments. Though the story is a departure from the previous games, Call of Duty 4 still features intense mission-based first-person shooter gameplay that should be familiar to fans.<br><br>The plot centers on two megalomaniacal madmen who are fomenting unrest around the world in an attempt to cement their own power. Imran Zakhaev is a one-armed Russia nationalist who longs to return his country to a Soviet Union style of government by seizing a stockpile of nuclear weapons. Zakhaev has support from several divisions of the Russian army, but, knowing that the United States would quickly come to the aid of the Russian government, he funds a coup in the Middle East to divert attention. Led by Zakhaev ally Khaled Al-Asad, the Middle Eastern coup results in intense fighting which eventually leads to the launch of a Russian nuclear missile toward American soil. Players fight through this chaos as both Sergeant John MacTavish, a British SAS operative doing battle in Russia, and Sergeant Paul Jackson, a U.S. Marine fighting in the Middle East.<br><br>Call of Duty 4 aims to capture the challenges of modern war by pitting the superior technology of the U.S Marines and British SAS against the cunning guerilla tactics of a terrorist group. In addition to close quarters combat, players will be called upon to perform fast-rope helicopter drops, provide air support from an AH-1 Super Cobra helicopter, call in precision air strikes, and man the turret of an AC-130 Spectre Gunship to engage enemy fighters from the sky. Gamers also join a two man sniper team on a flashback mission in which players head to the Chernobyl Zone of Alienation on a mission to assassinate a younger Zakhaev.<br><br>Modern Warfare features an expansive set of online multiplayer modes. Players will be able to choose from Assault, Special Ops, Light Machine Gunner, Demolitions, and Sniper classes, or create up to five special classes with customizable weapons and perks. Gamers can then take their fighters through a dozen different multiplayer modes like Free-for-All, Team Deathmatch, Search and Destroy, Headquarters, Domination, and Sabotage. Players who frequently battle online will be able to accrue experience points, unlock special weapons and gear, and eventually unlock Prestige Mode in which gamers can trade in their rank for special insignias. Minimize
1,012 Reviews from Epinions.com
Jan 9, 2008
Adrenaline pumping fun
Pros: Realism, great AI, good graphics, variety of weapons
Cons: Short scenario, some areas can be frustratingly tough
The Bottom Line:
If you enjoy FPS, this is a must buy. It simulates small-unit tactics quite well, even when playing solo.
My wife bought this game for my birthday but I play it sporadically since I also got the Xbox 360 and four other games for Xmas. I haven't completed it yet but I'm at the end.
I haven't played any of the other Call of Duty games so I can't say how #4 compares with any of the others in the series. But compared to Halo 3, Half-Life 2, et al. it's very good.
CoD4 puts you in the role of either an SAS operative or a US Marine; your character varies depending on the mission. The Marine missions take place in the Middle East while the SAS missions take place in Western Russia.
For people who are gun fanatics, there are roughly 70 weapons you can use in the game, ranging from pistols to miniguns. You can also use RPGs and Claymores during certain missions. Virtually any weapon can be picked up and used, and you'll find a lot when you start blasting the bad guys. You can carry two weapons at a time, usually a long arm and a pistol but you can dump the pistol for something with more power if you want. (It's quicker to change weapons than change magazines so make sure your secondary weapon is good).
While the normal 1st person view shows the typical FPS "floating target" HUD, you can also press the left trigger button and actually use the weapon's sights. If your rifle has an optic scope, you can use it also. When you use sniper rifles, the sight picture bounces as you breath but you can press a button to hold your breath for a few seconds to give you a near perfect shot.
Ammunition-wise, each weapon has it's own unique ammo. Normally you can't find ammo for your Western weapons so if you're trigger happy you'll find yourself picking up a gun off a body. However, you do start out with several hundred rounds so you initially have about a dozen magazines (perhaps one of the more unrealistic parts of the game, considering how much other equipment you carry).
In addition to the standard "slug throwers", at times you can use a vehicle-mounted weapon like a minigun or grenade launcher. There is also a section where you control the weapons of an AC-130 gunship. (I giggled my butt off every time I saw the bodies go flying).
You also have access to several grenades, including normal fragmentation, smoke, and flash-bangs. Certain rifles also have an underslung grenade launcher that can be quite useful. Several missions outfit you with C4 explosives, Claymore mines, or even the ability to call in an airstrike when the going gets rough.
Unlike other games, there is no health meter. When you get shot, you see a red bar indicating the direction. If you get hit a lot, then the screen turns red, you start breathing heavy, and you move real slow. If you're not near cover, chances are you won't make it. This gaming dynamic makes it tougher to beat the bad guys in some sections because you can't use your normal gaming tactics. Unlike the games where you can run straight at a guy shooting you and still live, you really have to consider using cover to survive.
Grenades are another fun aspect. Though it's deeply satisfying to throw grenades around corners, remember that the bad guys have grenades too. And they aren't afraid to use them. Similar to Half-Life, your opponents have pretty good tactics and know when to throw grenades. If a grenade is close enough to hurt you, a little icon appears on the screen showing you the direction it is. If it's really close, you may have the opportunity to throw it back. But again, the bad guys can too. I have a bad problem of crouching during combat; it's bad because you don't move very fast when crouched so if a grenade lands nearby, I forget to stand up and run away so I often die.
Graphically, the game is gorgeous. Though I don't own an HDTV it still looks great on my TV; it's nearly photorealistic. However, I think the white highlights are a little "bright" and unrealistic, accenting the fact that it's only a game. Plus, all bullets leave a "tracer trail" so you can see where the firing is from. Though it's good since it helps you see where the enemy is at, it does take away from the authentic feel of the game.
The sound is good. All dialog is spoken by voice actors with the appropriate accent (you can also set up subtitles if desired). Weapon effects sound good, with each weapon having a distinctive sound.
The AI in the game is some of the best I've seen. Your opponents are good at using cover and small unit tactics; they don't just mill around waiting to be killed nor do they run straight at you. They can also hear you and react to it, so the silent segments can be nerve-wracking.
Your comrades have just as good AI as your opponents. They will use grenades when necessary and provide good cover fire. They will also die if they take enough damage. And you can let them take point if you want someone else to get hit first.
I like this game because it uses current weapons and technology, something that lacking in many games. It gives a distinctly different feel to the game compared to Halo or Half-Life. The realism of the game is so good, my wife refuses to watch me play because I might be sent to Iraq in a few months; it's a little to realistic for her.
Though the single-player game is pretty short, I think it has good replay value. Obviously multi-player is a big draw but even the single player game allows for enough change in tactics that you can try different techniques each time.
As a small-unit simulator, it's very well done. I can see the military using this to help train personnel when they can't get to the range. Though using a controller is decidedly different than holding a weapon, many of the ideas available will help with leadership and teamwork.
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