Modern Warfare 3 Multiplayer Preview
Don't call it Call of doody just yet...
I remember the early hours of November 10th, at around 3am GMT, I got home excited and anxious, I had just got my hands on a copy of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Midnight launches are the ultimate showcase events for fanboys, peering out of dorms and living rooms to face nature in order to get their mitts on games first. I was smart, I just got a lift at around 2 am from a relative to save me from the cold and ques, but still get the game relatively early, but still allowing me to finish the campaign on normal by 7:30 am, at which time i t was time it was time for breakfast. The rest of the day was spent racking up a solid k/d ratio on MW2’s renowned multiplayer.
Call of Duty is easily the superstar franchise of the gaming industry, money, fame and awe from it’s peers. So it’s no surprise that when a new game is announced, thousands flood for a chance to play it, in this case the Call of Duty XP event.
I have to say first of all, that as with every Call of Duty I encounter, it’s definitely the adrenalin rush of simple gun battles that slightly resembles real warfare (you do aim a gun and shoot in real life, but that’s about where the resemblance ends) that has made this franchise so popular. The simple gameplay makes getting mediocre at this game very easy, with plenty of perks and attachments to help you along the way. This remains the same, nothing massively different here, there aren’t any new mechanics in terms of the core player versus player battle. However, where they did change things are the killstreaks, by introducing Strike Packages.
A player can choose between 3 strike packages; Assault, Support and Specialist. Assault is the most similar to the killstreak system that we are most accustomed to; get X kills in a row, get a killstreak to help you, keep going and getting X+Y kills in a row and you receive another one. But Support and Specialist Strike Packages mix things up a little. the Support package introduces a no reset system, the kill streaks don’t reset once you die! To balance this, the kill streaks are as the name suggests, supportive; things like UAV and EMP. Specialist is where things really get freaky, similar to the system in Black Ops’ Sharpsooter, kill streaks give you perks, for instance 2 kills can activate the scavenger perk or otherwise.
Couple this new system with perk changes such as the Hardline perk allowing 2 assists to count as 1 kill in your streaks, the role of Killstreaks hasn’t since such a major change since, well Modern Warfare 2 and the changes show in game, with those who’s K/D ratios aren’t amazing, still capable of helping their team with the support strike package. However the problem that has plagued Call of Duty since Modern Warfare 2 is that the basic gameplay rewards Lone wolf players looking to rack up tonnes of kills far too much, the new killstreak system is awesome, but it won’t be the noobs who will use Support strike packages, their minds are too pumped full of action and shooting things with their pointy sticks to pick something that will help the team. It will be the more thoughtful players, people who are playing with their buddy’s for total dominance of a game, the clans and teams that will benefit most from supportive kill streaks.
One thing I haven’t touched on much is the Specialist package, even though it’s the one that I spent most of my time using. This system rewards a lone wolf player, immensely, turning you into a super soldier in the field of nooblets. It’s extremely fun; little things like how I don’t have to run Scavenger Pro to stop myself from running out of rounds I’ve already pumped into enemies, how objective players can still have perks used for Deathmatch players and vice versa.
Modern Warfare 3 and Call of Duty games in general do have their flaws, the result of gung ho behaviour of the game’s fans and demographic, this can’t be changed, Activision don’t want a better game, they want one that sells more. However the developers have at least made it a little easier for newer players and team players alike. Whether it’s the right decision to make will be decided after release, when millions of players start popping each other’s heads off.
Mehraj Ahmed, Games Editor
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