Games

Modern Warfare 2 (2022) Campaign Review


Our Score

7/10 – Good

The Good

Stunning visuals with an incredibly cinematic story.

The Bad

Missions often feel dragged out and the enemy AI can be frustrating.

Release Date

October 28th

Developed By

Infinity Ward

Available On

PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC

Reviewed On

PC

Whether you love it or loathe it, there’s no denying that Call of Duty has become a staple of the modern gaming era. More often than not, the series tops the sales charts each year, which means there’s a strong chance you’ve got at least one Call of Duty title in your gaming catalogue. But it’s probably fair to say that despite becoming a household name worldwide, most players purchase Call of Duty for the multiplayer, not its single-player campaign.


It’s clear that Activision is aware of this too, as the latest instalment in the series has given players a whole week of campaign early access when pre-ordered digitally, a likely attempt to get as many eyes as possible on Infinity Ward’s big sequel. Aside from getting to experience the Modern Warfare 2 campaign with no distractions, it also means you can test out many of the weapons before diving head-first into multiplayer on October 28th.

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The cutscenes will leave you in awe, the lighting will leave you in disbelief, and the attention to detail will leave you damn near speechless.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, not to be confused with the 2009 entry of the same name, is filled with 17 gruelling, intense, and occasionally drawn-out missions. Under the watchful eye of General Shepard, Task Force 141 has returned, featuring perennial favourites Captain Price, Ghost, Soap, and more. Their latest mission sees these elite soldiers tasked with taking down Hassan Zyani, a Major in Iran’s Quds Force. Zyani has set out for redemption against America after his commanding officer, General Ghorbrani, was killed during an illegal weapons deal between Russia and Iran.

Along the way, players will experience twists, turns, and some Michael Bay-style action in one of Call of Duty’s most cinematic storylines ever. There’s no doubt about it, Modern Warfare 2 is one of the most visually stunning Call of Duty titles ever released. After almost two years in the wild, developers are beginning to take full advantage of what the current generation of consoles has to offer, resulting in what can only be described as Call of Duty: The Movie.

Yes, the cutscenes will leave you in awe, the lighting will leave you in disbelief, and the attention to detail will leave you damn near speechless, but is this the classic Call of Duty we all know and love? Of course it is! Infinity Ward knows the formula well, and they weren’t going to stray far from what works, because if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

READ MORE: Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Raids Will Release In December

There are some new features thrown in for good measure, even if they do feel completely shoehorned in. A new dialogue wheel gives players the option to steer certain points of conversation, and boy did it take me by surprise when it first appeared. I can always appreciate the attempt to spice things up, but this was certainly a feature I wasn’t expecting to ever see in a Call of Duty game, and for good reason.

The first instance of this feature appearing was borderline bizarre, as a conversation between Gaz and Laswell sees the pair discuss…their favorite weapons. I can appreciate the point was to introduce the player to this feature in a lighter manner, prior to a much more important mission later down the line, but it just felt incredibly out of place and strange. The dialogue wheel goes on to appear multiple times throughout the campaign, but only really had an impact during an interrogation mission, where players must select the correct answers or be killed.

In the grand scheme of things, the dialogue wheel is a small cog in a much, much bigger machine. Modern Warfare 2 introduces plenty of other new gameplay mechanics, and even though they don’t serve much of a point in the single-player campaign, it’s clear to any Call of Duty fan that Infinity Ward is simply seeking to acclimatize players to the changes that will become the new norm in Warzone 2.0. A whole mission based around the game’s new car-hijacking feature is thrilling, and really makes you feel like you’re in a Michael Bay movie, but just like a large portion of the game’s missions, it drags on for too long.

READ MORE: 10 Games You Should Play If You Love Battlefield

Modern Warfare 2’s campaign can be completed within 6 hours, but the first half of its story feels like a lifetime. Between an AC130 mission that spans two missions and some of the most overpowered AI in Call of Duty history, I often found myself pleading for missions to just come to an end. Don’t get me wrong, there’s fun to be had in every level, but a lot of them could simply be cut in half as they become mind-numbingly repetitive.

modern warfare 2 image 2

In the lead-up to the release of Modern Warfare 2, Infinity Ward revealed that they had completely revamped the way AI works. I was under the impression that this meant enemies were a little “smarter”, but I quickly found out Infinity Ward has just made them incredibly overpowered. Not only are certain enemies now equipped with armor plates (another feature that is again only available to the player in one mission), but they will also laser you down with absolutely no hesitation. I played through the campaign on regular difficulty, and I’ll say it with pride, this is the hardest Call of Duty game ever made. I died a frustratingly large number of times throughout.

Some new features feel unnecessary, whilst others feel like a tutorial for Warzone 2.0.

Despite some drawn-out missions and blood-boiling AI, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 feels damn good. One of my biggest gripes with Treyarch Studios’ Black Ops Cold War was that many of the weapons felt like pea-shooters with no differentiation, but you can always count on Infinity Ward to put 110% into a weapon’s audio, visual, and general feel. Each weapon feels completely different from the last — the audio when firing is unique, the attention to visual detail is incredible, and you can feel the difference in weight between a sniper rifle and a submachine gun, for example. When you combine these detailed weapons with the removal of most of the game’s HUD, you’re left with one of the most realistic Call of Duty titles to date. But don’t worry, with the click of a button the mission objective, compass, ammo count, and more will re-appear on your screen.

If like me, you’re a Call of Duty fan, this is very much more of the same — but that also means you can’t really go wrong. Some new features feel unnecessary, whilst others feel like a tutorial for Warzone 2.0. Modern Warfare 2 is certainly let down by repetitive gameplay and missions that overstay their welcome. But, that said, Infinity Ward has given fans what amounts to a gripping story and stunning cinematic experience that’s peppered with a few flawed concepts and disappointing elements.



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