on February 13, 2009
I received COD4 as a gift, however, i'm no stranger to COD. I've been playing since COD2: Big Red One (PS2).
CAMPAIGN: By far the most immersing and welcoming campaign i've played on an FPS. From your first training mission, to your last *NO SPOILERS* mission, you will notice how detailed the campaign is, and how deep the story goes. There is even a mission where you are in 1992 in Chernobyl Pripyat Ukraine. The AI are intelligent and will react to your every move. For example, when on a mission against the OpFor, playing as the USMC, I encountered a building filled with enemies firing mounted Machine guns out the window, pinning my squad down. I hid behind a shipping crate, but whenever I peeked around the corner to fire shots with my M4, they responded by either retreating back farther in the room, or by remembering my position making me very vulnerable. That is only just a taste of the smart AI. However, if that's too hard for you (I played on normal difficulty and completed the last mission all the way up to the airplane), you can just select easy. Generally this game is not hard to learn at all, and trust me, you wont be overwhelmed, the campaign is very balanced. And the other soldiers in your group will help you and will be effective. There is a perfect balance between the AI (friendly and enemy) in COD4MW.
ARCADE MODE: After completing campaign, you will be left wanting more. Arcade Mode fulfills that desire. Arcade Mode allows you to select any previous mission, and play through it earning points for killing enemies. This gives Arcade Mode an interesting "skirmish" type feel.
MULTIPLAYER: The obvious big part of COD4MW is Multiplayer. It consists of many gametypes, Team Deathmatch, Mercenary Team Deathmatch, Free-For-All, Sabotage, Domination, Ground War, just to name a few, there are many more. There are 20 Multiplayer maps (including the Variety Map Pack, 4 extra maps), some based off of Campaign, others uniquely their own, they are: Ambush, Backlot, Bloc, Bog, Countdown, Crash, Crossfire, District, Downpour, Overgrown, Pipeline, Shipment, Showdown, Strike, Vacant, and Wetwork. The Variety Map Pack is available for download on Playstation Store and Xbox Live and includes the last four maps: Broadcast, Chinatown, Creek, and Killhouse. It only costs $9.99 (about $2.50 per map) I would recommend buying the map pack as soon as you can because those bonus maps are spectacular and without them you will miss out on playing with other players who do have it. The Multiplayer experience is the best i've played on an FPS and it is highly addicting. You can invite friends into your party, and play in games together on a team, as well as join random games that are in the Lobby, or that are in progress. You can also create classes with many combinations of your own weapons and perks. For example: the class that I use often is one that I created, I named it .50 Cal, because the setup is:
PRIMARY WEAPON: Barret .50 Cal Sniper Rifle, No Attachment, Digital Camouflage.
SECONDARY WEAPON: Gold Desert Eagle.
SPECIAL GRENADE: Stun Grenade, Device that disorients the target when detonated.
PERKS: PERK 1: Bandolier (Extra ammo) PERK 2: Stopping Power (Increased Bullet Damage PERK 3: Deep Impact (Deeper Bullet Penetration for shooting through walls better.) Shooting through walls is an effective way to kill enemy players. There is also a ranking system in Online Multiplayer mode. You start out as a Private Level 1, however the highest rank is a Commander Level 55 (which is what I am). However there is a Prestige Mode that allows you to trade in all your weapon unlocks for 10 additional Insignias that are real Navy Insignias. Thus, making the actual highest rank a Level 55 Gold Cross. This gives the game a total of 605 levels to achieve. Challenges are also important in the game. They can consist of anything such as kill enemies with cooked grenades, kill enemies while they are stunned, etc. Weapon challenges are getting headshots to unlock camouflage, and kills to unlock attachments. For Example, 25 headshots with the M4 will earn you Digital Camouflage, 75 Blue Tiger Camouflage, and 150 Red Tiger Camouflage. 25 Kills will earn you a silencer, 75, a Red Dot Sight, and 150, ACOG Scope. There are challenges such as this for every weapon, and you can complete them over any course of time. So that if you only get 5 kills per match over the course of five maps, you've got the silencer unlocked.
SPLIT SCREEN: The offline Split-Screen is a terrific feature that allows you to play with up to 4 players total. Split-Screen is very fun. You can select any map, and choose from a range of gametypes. Be creative. There are many possible game setup combinations.
I give COD4MW a 5/5 for fun and overall. It is a masterpiece and deserves game of the year. You will love COD4 and will have a lot of fun.