With Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019), this series is moving in a promising direction. Here you get fatter graphics, faster action and more multiplayer modes than you could ever dream of. But the biggest change lies in the tone itself. The game has gone in a darker direction, with a matured content that has received a mixed reception and defies the players’ morale. Sometimes it can be uncomfortable, but this is the most thought provoking release of the series so far.
Modern Warfare’s graphics is overwhelming. Every facial expression, all the detailed surroundings and the beautiful cinematic scenes. We played on a PS4 pro with HDR and 4k resolution and were amazed at the graphics.
Each scene is experienced as going straight into an interactive war movie, and we who know London well can say that the details of, for example, Piccadilly Circus are pretty striking, though much is a tale for the sake of the game.
This is not really a surprise, as Modern Warfare has got a whole new engine, and this is the first time this has happened in 14 years with this series. And we love it.
Sound design has been notched up, too – every weapon kicks up a harsh rattle that rebounds realistically according to your surroundings. Fire down an empty street and the shot can be heard echoing away from you, while indoor shootouts are a messy cacophony of rebounding pops and bangs.
In Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, the story itself is obviously inconvenient. While we can’t cover all sides of it, we can’t help but think that Infinity Ward has crossed some ethical boundaries in its quest to deliver, making even greater impact on players.
In our opinion, it is not the task of Infinity Ward to try to teach players about the “ethical conflicts” surrounding warfare in a video game, since they will never be able to recreate that experience. The fact that the game was marketed as if it actually can, is unpleasant. But what one person perceives as morally demanding will not necessarily affect others in the same way.
It’s an exceptionally compact shooter, with impressive graphics and loads of new features on the features front, which draws the series in a promising direction.
The change to a darker and more mature tone is what the series needed, but the aforementioned discomfort means it will fall short in that area. They still have some distance left.
But if you are primarily fond of Call of Duty as a first-person shooter, and do not care much for storytelling, you will probably enjoy Modern Warfare.