Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Review

It’s the biggest release of the year. Will it get the biggest score? FPS Gamer’s Kristan Reed takes on Infinity Ward’s Modern Warfare 2.

By Kristan Reed, November 10, 2009


Much has been said about the price tag of Modern Warfare 2 in the build up to its release, and not much of it publishable. But if a videogame’s worth can be measured by how much of it stays with you after you’ve put the pad down, then even the most indignant will have few complaints if this hugely anticipated sequel ends up delivering as much as the original did two years ago.

Perhaps the most impressive thing about the original Modern Warfare was the fact that most people didn’t put the pad down, devoting untold hours to mastering its thrilling online component long after they’d come down from its monumentally brilliant, if brief, single player campaign. Having mastered such a winning formula, the last thing you expect are radical changes, and so it proves.

Picking up from where the 2007 classic left off, you’re once again on the trail of a Russian Ultranationalist leader as he plots the destruction of the West. driven by a desire to cause maximum mayhem to the West. Having spun the death of his predecessor as an act of martyrdom, and successfully convinced his followers of the tyranny of the West, Vladamir Makarov proves to be an adversary with an impressively evil CV.

Four by two of reinforced plastic is a soldier's best friend.

Four by two of reinforced plastic is a soldier's best friend.

Shock tactics quickly become a feature of Modern Warfare 2, so much so that the game specifically checks – twice – if you’d rather not be subjected to scenes of gratuitous violence. Evidently revelling in its new Adult Only status, Infinity Ward waste no time in repeatedly pushing the violenceometer needle into the red, depicting the kind of shocking scenes we’ve long been used to in gritty dramas, but rarely get exposed to in games in such uncompromising fashion. Expect an ugly media frenzy to develop as the wider world wrestles with the ramifications of What This All Means. [We started without you, actually - Ed]

What it means in the context of the series is simple: that terrorism is an ugly business, and Infinity Ward hasn’t tried to mask the reality, or trivialise what it looks like. Whether it crosses The Line is perhaps a topic to wrestle over at length another time, but it’s hard to divorce yourself from how brutal some of the scenes really are, even when, in truth, it’s still some way from reality. The fact that it’s often unclear who the bad guys actually are, and that it’s you that’s pulling the trigger is, of course, the difference.

9 Responses to “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Review”

  1. lan lover says:

    finally a review with a sensible score.

  2. mitchell says:

    sensible? mw2 is easily at least a 9.5 horrible read/review.

  3. Nathan says:

    Haha mitchell doesn’t sound like a fan boy… have you even picked up the game? if not then you are just a fan boy and not really helping anything.

  4. MattyF says:

    Note: Lower scores do not equal smarter reviews.

    If you low-ball a score, it does not mean you’re the smart guy who didn’t give in to the hype. If a game is deserving of a 10/10, give it one. It a game is just shy of being perfect, then it’s a 10/10, and NOT a 9/10, because it’s CLOSER to a 10/10. It’s called rounding.

    Halo 3 was by no means a perfect game, but reviewers were so quick to slap it with 8/10 scores just to proudly and arrogantly say “overhyped.”

    If Modern Warfare 2 was a new IP and had a different name but was the exact same game, people would revere it instead of try to battle the hype like an arrogant douchebag.

  5. Maggie Simpson says:

    mitchell sounds like he’s had his throat filled with knobs on multiple occasions.

  6. AndrewF says:

    How about play the game for yourself? I own the game and I hate it when people go around saying its “overhyped” and “won’t be good” when THEY haven’t even played it. Once you do, you’ll realize that the review score here IS low, and should be closer to a 10/10, because the game is ridiculous…

  7. Zeraphil says:

    And once you ALL understand that review scores are based on an individual’s OPINIONS, and that there is not a single test that can quantify with any kind of mathematical precision how awesome or crappy the game is, you’ll realize that reviews scores can be anything they want and you won’t like the game any more nor any less.

  8. Gory says:

    In case he’s right and it makes you think? :P

    I wholly agree with the review on 99% of the points raised. Being a PC gamer, I’d have given the game a 10/10 if it wasn’t for the dumbing-down of MPlayer options usually available to the unwashed PC gaming masses. Even still, hits a 9/10 for me.


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