Multiplayer, first person shooter that moved the franchise from the past to the 21st century
Windows 7 / Windows Vista / Windows XP / Windows 8
Released by Infinity Ward in 2007, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is the fourth installment in the popular Call of Duty first-person shooter video game series (excluding expansion packs) and the first of the Modern Warfare line in the franchise.
CoD 4: Modern Warfare is significant in that it is the first of the franchise to break away from the World War II setting, and gamers loved the idea. The success of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare led to the creation of two direct sequels, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
Taking a more cinematic approach than its predecessors, Call of Duty 4 is played from the perspective of a US Marine Sgt. Paul Jackson of 1st Force Recon, and British SAS Sgt. ‘Soap’ MacTavish of the 22nd SAS regiment, whose interlaced storylines drive a strong plot with a solid narrative. Occasionally, players take a break from these two characters to play some diversionary roles as other characters, such as Captain John Price (whose character is voiced by the actor Bill Murray) during flashback missions to 1996, and a crewman on an AC-130 gunship tasked with providing air coverage using thermal imaging and very, very large guns.
The game’s plot takes place in 2011, when a civil war breaks out in Russia between ultra-nationalist and government forces. Simultaneously, an extremely anti-Western separatist group in a small, Middle Eastern country is attempting a coup to seize power. The player’s roles in these events involve missions with often overlapping timelines, as the United States invades the Middle Eastern country in order to head off the coup and the British work to prevent the Russian ultra-nationalists from obtaining a nuclear device.
Missions that diverge from the main plot points of the story work to add a significant depth to the story’s characters, providing a better understanding of the people and events that have shaped the current situation, and drawing the player into gripping, personal storylines. The power of the cinematic and narrative elements of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare simply cannot be understated, as the game’s visually intense gameplay graphics integrate the cinematic feel into a very involving overall experience.
The gameplay mechanics in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare are superb. In addition to the obvious implementation of modern weapons, players use a combination of stances, cover and tactical movement to accomplish their goals. A visceral damage indication system, involving thudding heartbeats and blurred, red vision, adds to the intensity and immersion of the game.
The game features two multiplayer modes available on a variety of maps-–team-based mode and death match mode. Players track their performance in multiplayer mode by means of experience points, with kill streaks rewarded in the form such perks as tactical air strikes and UAV reconnaissance scans. By advancing in levels and completing various challenges, players unlock new perks, new weapons, more advanced challenges and additional gameplay modes.
Overall, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is a solid addition to the popular franchise. Other pros and cons of the game include: