Review Roundup: Did you know Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is out?
As the entire world is probably still up from the day before playing the biggest release of the year, if you’re one of eight people in the world like me that don’t have the game yet, here’s some review excerpts that might change your mind.
1UP- I think MW3 is a complete package in a lot of ways. The campaign is solid and filled with thrill-ride stuff that doesn’t go as far off the rails as MW2. Spec Ops is fantastic for short missions that require team coordination to play. And Survival finally gives me a zombie-free Horde mode in COD that’s as fun, but filled with different tactical approaches. And then there’s the real reason most people love this series: competitive multiplayer.
Their score: A-
PlayStation Official Magazine UK – MW3’s multiplayer is familiar territory, but there are key changes that may just make it the best iteration yet. Sprinting has been slightly slowed down – movement speed now takes account of what you’re carrying, and though it’s a subtle change, it makes running around slightly less manic. The best thing about this is that there are fewer hopped-up ninjas dashing around the place and stabbing everyone – although the kids online will doubtless figure out some way to keep on keeping on.
Their score: 9 out of 10
Destructoid – Of course, competitive multiplayer is the mode almost everybody thinks about when it comes to Call of Duty, and I can confirm that Modern Warfare 3 boasts what may be the best multiplayer the series has had to date. Improving what worked in previous games and altering less successful elements, MW3 provides an experience that feels both deeper and more streamlined — giving players all they need to jump right into the action but holding a lot of extra toys to play with under the surface.
The biggest change has come to the Killstreak system, a previously contentious subject among the COD community. There are now three “Strike Packages” tailored to different sorts of players, balanced in a way that ensures everybody gets to enjoy the game and feels rewarded for helping their team in whatever way they know best. Players can equip three streak abilities, and unlock new ones by earning unlock points during gameplay.
Their score: 9.5 out of 10
Joystiq – Finally, Call of Duty Elite really shines with Modern Warfare 3 — all of your kills are archived and tabulated in the service’s various stat engines, and the system is seamlessly integrated into the console game, a separate console app, the web app, and even mobile apps. You can edit and sync loadouts and created game modes from web to console, and clan support is impressive, if not long overdue. Most of the service is completely free, too, so using Elite is a no-brainer for anyone playing Call of Duty, a nice bonus that even casual players will come to appreciate.
Their score: 4.5 out of 5
IGN – People love to hate it, but the Call of Duty franchise is successful for a reason. No other first-person shooter has the same flair for visual spectacle in its singleplayer campaign, and few can match its utterly addictive multiplayer. While Call of Duty games have become formulaic at this point, as evidenced by Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3’s muddled narrative and at times frustrating design, Infinity Ward and Sledgehammer Games have refined and polished the Modern Warfare experience to produce the best of the series with the third installment.
Their score: 9 out of 10
Giant Bomb – When I take a step back and total it all up, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is still one of the best first-person shooters of the year. The multiplayer changes are just interesting enough to make me want to configure classes all over again, and it has a lot of good maps to choose from. The amount of closure in the campaign–I can’t imagine they’ll call a game “Modern Warfare 4″ at this point–makes it worth seeing, even if it isn’t always exciting to play. And Spec Ops has always been more exciting to me than Zombies. But the whole thing feels old at this point. The new tricks feel more like a distraction designed to make you forget how revolutionary Call of Duty 4 was. I will certainly buy and play a copy of Modern Warfare 3, but there’s nothing here that makes me want to shut off the rest of the world and obsess over it anymore. It makes you wonder if the franchise’s best days are truly behind it and where Infinity Ward and/or Sledgehammer go from here, let alone Treyarch, who will presumably iterate on Black Ops in 2012.
Their score: 4 out of 5
Eurogamer – The core experience, however, is unmistakably COD. It’s as frantic and aggressive as ever, with no concessions to suggest that Activision has been rattled by Battlefield 3’s tubthumping. The headshot is still king, and the 16 maps all adhere to the ethos that has served the series so well to date: keep things moving, keep things busy and make sure there are no safe places to hide. At its brutal best, there’s still nothing like a Call of Duty multiplayer match, and a shrewdly designed unlock system ensures that players of every skill level will start expanding their arsenal almost immediately.
Their score: 8 out of 10
This is just the first salvo of reviews found on metacritic. As more reviews come in, I have a feeling the divide might be greater than in games past. Modern Warfare might just be showing its age. I wonder how much work production will go down today?
Check out Kris.G’s Modern Warfare 3 Hardened Edition Unboxing video and we’ll have our own review soon.