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I don’t think I’m alone when I say I enjoyed the hell out of Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare and was pretty excited about a sequel, side-stepping World at War due to my fatigue of playing WWII shooters. When Modern Warfare 2 came around the buzz was immense with it going on to break all sorts of records for first day sales and the oodles of money Activision made off the franchise. Then things got ugly. Activision fired two of Infinity Ward’s studio heads, Jason West and Vince Zampella for reasons still not entirely known which caused a great deal of unrest within the develop team behind what are considered the ‘real’ Call of Duty games.
Doubts of the franchise’s future were hushed when Black Ops came out last year and despite feeling like someone’s grabbing you by the shoulders and screaming in your face when playing, Black Ops smashes all previous sales records. But the ill feeling towards Call of Duty as a series and shooters as a whole is seemingly at the highest it’s ever been so with a crippled Infinity Ward expected to release Modern Warfare 3 later this year, I for one doubted whether they’d be capable of producing something to top what I’ve previously played.
The game leaked in almost its entirety not long ago with Kotaku revealing the details of the storyline from start to finish. It’s world war 3, Captain Price will return to kick some mean Russian dude’s butt visiting various locations around the world in typical CoD form. That was pretty much to be expected and to be honest, not all that interesting. I mean, really, is there much love for the main protagonists for the franchise or are they cleverly voiced vessels to continue a Hollywood pleasing storyline? EA’s Battlefield Bad Company series was better at giving personality to its heroes and the big contender for CoD‘s crown, Battlefield 3, is looking stunning and might just come out on top this holiday season.
Or that’s what I thought until I saw the first gameplay trailer for Modern Warfare 3 which debuted last night. It’s big, brash and bold and as you would expect for a CoD game. But something about it has rekindled my desire to play another CoD experience. I don’t know what exactly it is either, I can’t quite put my finger on it but the short snippets of footage do a really good job of winning back some of the hype that Battlefield has won. Modern Warfare 3 takes players to America, England, Germany and France and it was the turmoil in London that roused my interest. Not because I’d wish that level of harm to the capital of England (yeah it’s busy and a bit smelly in places but still a decent place), but seeing familiar landmarks and recognisable features like British Police cars used as cover extends the feeling of realism when playing games like this. American and some European locations are often recreated in video games with a striking level of detail but little old England isn’t aways greatly portrayed and if Infinity Ward – together with Sledgehammer Games who are lending a helping development hand – can do the city justice, UK gamers may get that fuzzy sensation of feeling like really being a part of the action.
I know I’m picking up on one, possibly minor part of a trailer that shows some awesome graphics and summer blockbuster action sequences but it’s a part that stood out for me the most and if that’s all it takes to reignite the flame in a departing fan, the trailer has done its job and more. Modern Warfare 3 is coming November 8th this year and if Activision keep pumping out trailers like this, I may be forced to go to another midnight sale for a Call of Duty game. Something I promised myself last year I’d never do again.