The Call of Duty franchise has not seen a lull since its 2003 debut. The fourth entry, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, set the standard for modern first-person shooters, and its influence is still felt to this day more than ten years after release. 2019's Call of Duty is also releasing under the moniker Modern Warfare, updating the idea for modern times versus what the title meant in 2008. It's promising big shakeups to the formula in both the single and multiplayer. With release less than two months away, we thought it a good time to detail five reasons to be excited for the game, and five things that that are still giving us pause.
10 Worried: Campaign Length
The series has never had lengthy campaigns, and this is fine as long as it feels like a complete experience. A tight four hour story is better than a meandering twenty hour narrative. With Call of Duty, some campaigns have fared better than others. The best ones pack all they need into a dense package, while the lackluster ones feel incomplete or have a forced cliffhanger that make the player feel cheated rather than excited for the sequel. It has yet to be seen on which side Modern Warfare will fall.
9 Excited: New Engine
The new game is set to utilize a fresh engine for the series. One of the most notable improvements is the lighting. Trailers already showcase just how much better it looks than even Black Ops 4, and the multiplayer alpha from the end of August finally gave players a chance to experience it for themselves. The game still retains the signature Call of Duty look, but the presentation is far and beyond anything the series has previously accomplished.
8 Worried: Not Living Up To High Expectations
The original Modern Warfare transformed the genre. After its release, every FPS started stressing the importance of aiming down the sights and introducing a leveling system into multiplayer. With this mammoth-sized legacy behind it, one has to worry whether or not they will successfully live up to it.
It cannot simply be a great game, it has to attain divine magnificence. Anything less will draw unfavorable comparisons to the original. The studio is surely aware of this, and giving it their all in an attempt to do the name justice.
7 Excited: Gunfight
Modern Warfare is launching with a plethora of multiplayer modes in addition to the classics. One such mode is Gunfight, which players already got a taste of in the recent Alpha test. These four-player matches pits two teams of two against each other in tiny arenas in rounds lasting forty seconds.
predetermined loadouts leave customization at the wayside, making everyone evenly matched. In an age where most games go for high player counts and bombastic action, this stripped down mode makes for an interesting and addictive juxtaposition. It'll also attract those typically uninterested in the series' multiplayer offerings.
6 Worried: Multiplayer Balance
For the first time in the series history, cross-play will be enabled. This is a dream come true for many who were never able to play with their PC buddies. However, this brings up the issue of controller versus mouse. The developers already promised solutions to this, with players having the ability to play only with those using the same controller input if they wish to do so.
However, no word on regulating third-party devices that disguise the mouse and keyboard as a controller. Even the best planned out multiplayer components have growing pains, and this will surely be something they deal with post-launch.
5 Excited: Night Mode
With the new lighting comes the opportunity for a new way to play. Night Mode puts players into different versions of the map where luminescence is either the greatest ally or the worst foe. In darkness, one must rely on night vision goggles. However, enemies can activate light sources, temporary blinding the player. Aiming also reveals a laser sight, compromising one's position. This added layer of game play will force players to think up whole new strategies.
4 Worried: Microtransactions
This unfortunate reality of the industry has seeped into almost every major franchise. At best, they are avoidable and don't hinder game play. At worst, they render matches unwinnable without purchasing loot boxes or modifiers.
Modern Warfare will surely include these in some respects, but the publisher nor the studio has revealed how they will utilize them. It's possible they haven't made up their minds yet, either. As long as it remains cosmetic and nothing that effects game play, it won't be too jarring.
3 Excited: Campaign
Campaigns in the series have always been bombastic and exciting. Modern Warfare looks to blow all the others out of the water with something more emotionally impactful. Previews have already detailed a few intensely graphic scenes meant to elicit a reaction from the player.
Infinity Ward are reluctant to show some of it to the public for fear of stirring controversy. They would ultimately rather have fans experience it for themselves on October 25th when the game launches.
2 Worried: The Heavy Hitting Moments Will Feel Exploitative
When one tries to be daring and shocking, they always run the risk of coming off as cheap and exploitative. Only the press have seen these more grisly moments and while their impressions are positive, it is hard to say what the fans and public will think. Will they really hit hard, or will the player feel disconnected from the action? The infamous "No Russian" mission from Modern Warfare 2 still polarizes fans, and Modern Warfare promises more moments in a similar vein.
1 Excited: Old Members Of Infinity Ward Returned For This Project
Those old enough to remember the shake up at Infinity Ward after Modern Warfare 2's release will be excited to know that several former members of the team came back for the 2019 game. In addition to those who worked on the original Modern Warfare, some people from Naughty Dog also joined the team. Having people who worked on Uncharted and The Last of Us bodes well for a project intent on having a gripping single player campaign. For the older Infinity Ward members, it must have been an emotional journey coming back to a franchise they once left behind.