I’m All In on Modern Warfare’s Gunfight
I, along with what appears to be a vocal majority, have long desired for Call of Duty to undergo significant changes. The idea of rebooting the Modern Warfare franchise alone piqued my interest, but witnessing the game in action for the first time seized my attention. From a new engine, visuals, animations, map design, mechanics, and game modes, I was incredibly eager to get my hands on the game following the positive responses from the recent multiplayer reveal event. Many of the new multiplayer modes look exceptional, but it’s Gunfight I’m most interested in. Thankfully, I was able to spend several hours with the Modern Warfare Alpha on PS4 over the weekend and now find myself with a newfound infatuation.
Gunfight is a 2v2 mode where players fight to the death on small, symmetrical maps. At the beginning of every other round, you spawn with a random loadout; be it a sniper and shotgun, M1, Desert Eagle, etc. You have forty seconds to eliminate the opposing team with the weapons at your disposal. If players remain standing after forty seconds, an overtime flag spawns in the middle of the map. The first player to capture it wins the round and the first team to six wins the match.
Intensity Through The Roof
I crave high stakes competition, and Gunfight’s more than gratifying. First and foremost, I adore having only one life per round. It keeps you on edge and demands you play strategically. Spawning with random weapons also alters each encounter. Snipers inherently encourage players to attack from a distance while shotguns often propel them toward one another. Gear can’t be overlooked. I lost count of the times flash bangs saved my own or a teammate’s life, Molotov’s are great for controlling areas of the map, and claymores have repeatedly prevented players from getting the drop on me. What’s both satisfying and, at times, excruciatingly frustrating is the inclusion of ballistic projectiles. With the exclusion of hit scanning, you know whether or not your rounds are actually hitting your target, as confirmed by every kill cam. It also makes the final kill cam more fun to watch than ever before. The mode’s instantly engaging and addicting due to the nonstop action. Frankly, it’s remarkably fun to play and watch. It’ll undoubtedly thrive through streamers.
The realistic approach Infinity Ward’s taking with Modern Warfare is instantly recognizable. In addition to ballistic projectiles, player movement is a bit slower, weapons possess significant recoil, bullet drop is present, there are multiple reload methods, two ways to sprint, a mounting cover system, and time to kill is reduced. Though each weapon I used during the alpha possessed random attachments, I noticed significant differences in the ways they handled. I can’t wait to experiment with Gunsmith to alter weapons to my preference. Reloading while aiming down sights was especially beneficial while maintaining view of a target with a sniper. I didn’t much take advantage of the cover system, but getting in and out of it works well.
I need to gush over the game’s gorgeous animations and phenomenal sound design. Call of Duty’s always had impressive animations, but none quite like those present in Modern Warfare. Impressively, each reload animation is handcrafted without the use of performance capture. There’s a great video interview from Game Informer with Infinity Ward’s animation director Mark Grigsby covering the inspiration and process of the game’s animations I highly recommend checking out. Let me also praise the improved physics and death animations. A few new death animations were added over time, but until now we’ve more or less seen the same ones since 2007. Each weapon also feels and sounds profoundly powerful. I can’t say enough about the Desert Eagle alone. I appreciate minute attention to detail, and I love that bodies make noise upon falling to the ground. An alarming amount of games don’t feature that detail.
Gunfight’s a blast, and overall the game’s shaping up to be the franchise revolution we’ve been waiting for. Visually, it already looks beautiful in its alpha state. The additional multiplayer modes will certainly be fun based on the core gameplay alone, and I’m dying to get a glimpse of the campaign. I’m one of the few who uplift Infinite Warfare’s campaign. The narrative’s solid, but the character work is especially outstanding. If Infinity Ward’s capable of telling an impactful story in a preposterous space setting, I can only imagine the tale they’ve whipped up with Modern Warfare. For more on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, you can check out our thoughts from the multiplayer preview event here, or watch a multitude of gameplay videos on our YouTube channel.