Modern Warfare is a nostalgia hit right to the Limbic system and I love it.
12 years ago Call of Duty changed. The franchise took a bold step away from its roots set firmly in World War 2 and launched itself in to the modern day. It was a master stroke of re-imagination and people lapped it up. Anyone who has played Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare remembers ‘All Ghillied Up’. It was a truly iconic mission that had us creeping through the tall grass sneaking our way passed enemies. It was a fantastic single player campaign that has been enjoyed by millions upon millions of people. But for many it was the multiplayer that people flocked too and I was no different.
Back in ‘those days’ my friends and I all played on Xbox 360 and we used to spend a lot of time playing together. We’d quite frequently all meet up to play together at someone’s house. Setting up our TV’s and Xbox’s on a Saturday afternoon to play until the early hours of the morning wasn’t an abnormal thing for us to. This was something we did prior to CoD 4, but that game is one that stands out in my mind as being one we loved. The fast paced nature of the game, the great maps, the weapons, the kill streaks it was all new and exciting. The small team based game modes were perfect for our little group.
Classic feeling but Modern take
Now that Modern Warfare is back, I’m getting that same feeling again. Granted we don’t meet up to play and I’m actually playing with an entirely different group of people. But that sense of excitement about playing video games together is exactly what it used to be like 12 years ago. It has the same fast paced gameplay that I loved, but grounded in a reality I can believe.
For a number of years skipped the Call of Duty games. The franchise took a new direction that I wasn’t really in to and the multiplayer – from what little I tried during betas or any other event, felt poor. Sure there were a few single player campaigns that I enjoyed. Normally the multiplayer side didn’t quite capture my attention like COD 4 did. As a result I felt like I was pretty much done with the franchise. I didn’t really want to play another COD game and my tastes had moved beyond the twitchy shooter.
However, when that first trailer dropped something in me awoke, some long sleeping, sweaty nerd who had desire to see whether his reactions could keep up with ‘kids today’. Could I still play competitively (comparatively speaking, I’m far, far from being amazing), could I rekindle that flame that made me love the original Modern Warfare. This was a totally nostalgic reaction to seeing Call of Duty back in the setting I connected with the most.
The good kind of nostalgia
It’s funny because a little while back I wrote about nostalgia and how I thought it was better staying in the past. Although that may still be true, this is different. Mainly because Modern Warfare is not a remaster or re-release. It’s a new game that draws upon the successes of it’s past. Modern Warfare has taken what was good about CoD 4, and moulded it to fit in today’s market. What we’re left with is a great single player and multiplayer experience.
Is it perfect, no, in fact both me and all of my friends have had issues of some sort. But once we get playing and get stuck in to a few games it just gets really good fun. Sure we swear a lot and get annoyed about the insanely quick time to kill, the people who are clearly just miles better than. Even though those things get annoying, in a weird way, its part of the charm. I was complaining about the same things 12 years ago. I even got a “ur mum” dig not long after jumping in to the multiplayer. Some things never change!
Call of Duty might not be everyone’s cup of tea and I can totally understand why. Unbeknownst to me it seems that I had a COD shaped hole in my heart. Where I was waiting for the right iteration to fill it. This year’s title has done just that.