2011 was by no means a bad year for gaming. Battlefield 3, Skyrim, Assassins's Creed Revelations, LA Noire; all big titles that held us captive to our Xboxes for hour upon hour of excited gameplay. And yet despite the big sales of some very successful market offerings, it was Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 that knocked every other title out of the park with its immense volumes of sales. More than 6.5 million copies of Modern Warfare 3 were sold within 24 hours; the most successful launch of any game, ever.
According to Call of Duty developer Infinity Ward "there's a soldier in all of us", and apparently this has been the case since the very first critically acclaimed offering in the long-running CoD franchise, first released in 2004. We don't doubt that there will continue to be a soldier in us as long as Modern Warfare continues to impress with its incredible graphics, immersive plot and, let's face it, unbeatable multiplayer action. The big question that remains is where the Call of Duty franchise will take us next.
From World War II to the Cold War to modern warfare in the Middle East and in Russia; Call of Duty has transported us around the globe with weapons galore and many an opportunity to take down our enemies, be they Nazis or Russian commanders. Early CoD games were specifically focused around World War II, but it is the Modern Warfare games that have really set the series apart from its rivals, granting us gamers the opportunity to get our hands on a plethora of modern weaponry. We don't doubt that the Modern Warfare title will return to the Xbox One in the future, but with an army of different developers working on different Call of Duty titles over the history of the franchise it also looks likely that we may find ourselves thrust into different historical conflicts. The success of Call of Duty: Black Ops, released in 2010 and set during the Cold War and Vietnam War, suggests that we still enjoy the occasional foray into our war-torn past.
Say what you like about Call of Duty, but there is no denying that it is a game filled to the brim with stunning graphics. The powerful IW game engine developed by Infinity Ward has powered many CoD games, culminating in the powerful and improved 4.0 version used within Modern Warfare 3 and offering a minimum frames per second rate of 60. As the impending Xbox One console draws closer to release, we don't doubt that Infinity Ward are working on additional improvements to their graphics engine to work with the improved console technology. Imagine enormous open-map regions to battle your way through, imagine even more detailed backdrops, weapons and character faces and animations, imagine a frame rate that refuses to dip, despite the incredible detail on screen. No matter what the future holds for CoD, we can rest assured that it will be an attractive one!
If former Call of Duty games are anything to go on we can expect to enjoy a range of gameplay elements in future installments:
- Campaign. Despite some reviews of Modern Warfare 3 expressing disappointment in a lackluster and forgettable campaign story, the campaign is an important aspect of Call of Duty games. Expect to be treated to a rollercoaster ride of action interspersed with gorgeous cut scenes as you make your way from battle to battle.
- Co-op. Call of Duty hasn't granted us a cooperative campaign to date, however the extra co-op segments, from Special Ops to Survival Mode, have still kept us enthralled. From complex missions to ceaseless waves of attacks from enemies with enhanced AI; there will certainly be a lot to enjoy in split-screen.
- Multiplayer. Forget the detailed graphics. Forget the campaign mode. We all know it's the multiplayer of CoD that really shines. The enhanced processing power of the Xbox One should allow for larger multiplayer maps, complete with greater numbers of contenders and additional gameplay modes.
- Control. It's highly unlikely that CoD developers will choose to adopt Kinect technology fully (we can't quite imagine commando rolling behind the couch and holding our fingers in the shape of a gun to shoot), but some actions may be recognized and incorporated within the gameplay. Perhaps the launch of a grenade, or some method of reloading will utilise the Kinect, but the game will undoubtedly feature more classic controls.
With rumors of the next Call of Duty game already on the table and even talk of some sort of Massively Multiplayer Online game within the series, the future for our favorite war game seems both certain and exciting.
Article by - Rebecca Waterman
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