Critically acclaimed, game of the year, “Best FPS Experience ... EVER” and a host of other names were lavished upon Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Earlier in the year Treyarch, after the success of launching Call of Duty: World at War on the Wii, announced that they would port the 2/3 year old Modern Warfare to the Wii. Immediately there was excitement about it, but also doubt whether the Wii could handle such a game and would Treyarch succeed. The release of graphically terrible photo’s and no official videos or advertisements for this game did not help the cause. BUT now the game is out and we can get a true idea of what it is like. Here is my review, and the first review on MyMedia, for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Reflex Edition.
In Modern Warfare: Reflex you take control of two men at the start. One of these men is “Soap” MacTavish. “Soap” is a S.A.S soldier that starts his story as a new recruit in training for a mission. You are introduced to Gaz and Captain Price. Two characters who assist you until the end of campaign. The other man you play as is Sgt Paul Jackson of the U.S.M.C. who is already a Sergeant when you take control of him. In this story there is a civil war in Russia and nukes are being prepared to shoot at America. The story of the campaign is very much based on terrorism and the cold war.
Previous titles on Wii basically went like so, “HI GUYS! I’m here to kill you =D! Bam your dead, kkthxbai.” But in this title you feel like your character has a story. You get to follow their story and be immersed in it from their training stages ... to their tragic death or deaths of friends (sorry for spoilers). At one point, while your captain is telling you an old story, you get to play your captain in an epic sniping mission. These factors work really well together to make a memorable storyline to follow for your character.
The videos played before the gameplay do not really contribute to the story effectively. The majority of the cut-scenes just zoom in on your target, and then give you a mission brief. Not only does this get repetitive but you are not getting any old cinematic feel which should be there when the topic is a past war. They do their job, in a non entertaining way, of telling you what the mission objective is and that is all you should expect from them.
Many people raved and praised the conduit for its control customisability for an FPS shooter. Well now that system has been completely outshined by the ultimate controls of Modern Warfare: Reflex. You can change absolutely every control the way you would like to, including the use of motion. You can do things such as make shoot B and reload twisting the Wii remote and pressing B at the same time. No person is able to say they do not like the button layout because you can customise every button to be what you want it to be. This is
the best control layout to feature in a Wii FPS.
The aiming customisability is beyond great. Simply saying it is the best does not give proper justice to what it has achieved. You can customise every factor of your aiming, even to the point that you can choose to aim with the control stick. Firstly I will discuss the camera and aiming sensitivity features. You can change everything to ultimate precision. In this you can change your pointer sensitivity, horizontal turning speed, vertical turning speed, camera speed, dead zone height, dead zone width and if that is not enough customisation for you, you can change all those features for Aiming Down Sight (ADS) as well + the scope sensitivity and turret sensitivity.
BUT there is more customisation to come. One of my personal favourites is the ability to change your reticle/crosshair. You can pick from 7 crosshair styles and change them to suit your style. You can change the inner and outer colours, the size and more. Also for extra fun you can turn on a Nunchuk feature called leaning. If it is turned on you can lean over to a side. This is good if you want to check if anyone is around a corner without exposing your full body. There is a selection of premade button layouts, and camera settings, but most people will want to change these premade settings to suit them individually.
The graphics in this game are pretty impressive compared to what we have been delivered before on the Wii. The cut scenes and mission introductions are the same as in the past versions of the game and are very well animated and detailed. One thing I noticed before playing the game is the little detail put into menu and Wii menu screen animations. When you click on the game in the Wii menu, you get a boring unattractive picture. No more than 10 minutes could have been spent on the Wii menu picture, and that is disappointing. The very little effort is seen again in the menus. There is one background image for the menu and the closest thing to an animation here is smoke in the background. The menus are the first thing you see, so the little effort put into this phase is disappointing.
The graphics in campaign are great visually. You will notice the higher texture resolution and how much everything looks better. If you go up to a character you won’t get the pixel effect like we have been delivered before. The amazing blood effects will really stand out to you and make you proud of the killing you have just done. The great graphics though are often ruined by the too often frame rate issues. But when there is not 100 people trying to shoot at you, the graphics as a whole look great, and everything runs smoothly.
The online graphics are slightly toned down but are still great. The guns and arms are surprisingly well detailed. In WaW the arms were shocking and always reminded you of how bad the graphics were. In this CoD you can change the colours of each of the guns to suit how you would like them. I can’t think of one of the gun skins that don’t look visually good as they all make the gameplay more visually enjoyable.
In WaW they failed in making a noticeable grenade danger indicator. So did they fail again? Yes they did! The grenade indicator is a non outlined white grenade picture that blends in with most of the dirt grounds and is not often seen. This is a disappointment and a real annoyance to most players.
The audio in Modern Warfare: Reflex is good in parts and okay in others. The wide arrays of gun and environment sounds are great and bring a lot of variety to the game. Each gun has a different recognisable sound and changes depending on the environment, location and attachments on the gun. The audio in terms of weapons and environment are great and improvements are hard to think of in this department.
The voice acting at times can be a real let down in the game. Some voices in the campaign sound great but then there are other voices, like Gaz’ voice for example, that sound like a random person off the street was payed to sound British. In game the radio voices are non motivational with lines such as “We got a draw” or “30 seconds to go” really not getting you excited about trying to finish the game in style. If there was more variety and excitement to the radio calls then the audio of this game would be much more appealing.
The legendary CoD 4 campaign has been fully ported to Wii, and unsurprisingly has made a great debut on the console. There is a wide variety of missions to do in this campaign from sniping missions, to reconnaissance missions and other various tasks. The gameplay is unlikely to get repetitive for most people as there is a constant change in the tempo of the gameplay and the way it is played. There are 20 missions in the normal campaign with a constant variety to each one. One mission all you do is look around from someone’s point of view before they get shot on public television. Another mission you are bombing everyone in sight. The campaign in the time you get to play it is great.
Also in campaign you have the ability to find enemy Intel lying around in various secret spots. There are 30 in total and you unlock certain cheats depending on how many you have found. These make the gun more fun to complete with cheats such as Slow-Motion, Paintball and heads that explode with tyres. The disappointing thing about the Intel is that is the only reason (other than the fun) to redo the campaign. The campaign would have immensely greater appeal if there were challenges to complete or other things to do.
The online gameplay is the reason why the majority of people would buy this game so i will go slightly overboard. There is no reason why this wouldn’t be the case as Treyarch have done a great job in making a great online FPS experience. Here is a brief rundown of some of the features:
-13 game modes
There is a wide variety of guns that are unique as each other. There is also a new invite system as well as many more forms of challenges in this game. This game is unlikely to get repetitive for people who choose to enjoy it.
The weapons in this game are fantastic for the most part. Unlike the extremely similar snipers in WaW each gun in a weapons class has its own distinguishing difference such as higher accuracy, or more power. Most guns
in terms of attributes are done to near perfection. There are some significantly overpowered perks, attachments and weapons though which can be annoying. An example is the rifle explosives attachments in this game. Once again they have been significantly overpowered and are highly likely to cause 1 shot kills. Another major part of the game that hasn’t been perfected is the grenades. There is only 1 explosive grenade in this game and that is the frag. The frag can be harmless at a certain range, but if it was slightly closer to a person, it would kill them straight away. This issue brings me to my next point.
Not only have they failed to create a noticeable grenade indicator, but they also have not succeeded in creating a working one. The grenade indicator (in my experience, even as a host) has about a 50% chance of appearing. This is a major glitch that causes many deaths due to the overpowered nature of the frag. But enough about the negatives ... let us get to the major positives.
Two new features which are sure to please many are the new invite system and the new challenge system. The invite system in WaW was terrible, annoying and made some people not want to add people at all. The new system, instead of making a big message pop up, has a little box in the corner of the screen saying “name” has invited you. You can then go to the pause menu at any time of your choosing and choose to accept the invite or delete it. There is also the awesome feature to join friend’s games. You may not always end up on your friend’s team but it is a great feature that will allow friends to join in the fun at any time without having to invite a friend out of game or be invited. I also mentioned the new (to the Wii) challenge system. There is the regular expected challenges such as headshots and gun achievements, and then there is also other fun challenges that involve knifing, shooting through walls, last stand kills, martyrdom kills and the list goes on. This is great and part of the reason why Wii FPS fans will be hooked on this game. Another feature most people will utilise is the ability to change the colour of your name (guide here: www.mywii.com.au/
). Once again another great feature.
A dissapointment is the lack of wii-speak. This doesnt make the experience any worse but modes such as Search and Destory or Sabotage or any other game mode could really benefit from it.
The Final Verdict
Great engaging story, Cut scenes are mediocre.
Everything is customisable. What more could you want?
The graphics look great in game. The frame rate issues and little effort put into the menu bring down the score.
Music, environment sounds and weapon sounds are nice. Voice acting is unmotivated and nothing memorable.
Great thoroughly enjoyable experience. Could be better with achievements and challenges added.
A great array of variety and fun put together to make a great online experience. The addition of wii speak, and issues fixed such as grenade glitchesand overpowered weapons would greatly improve the overall game.
8.75/10 (averaged out)