Call Of Duty Modern Warfare 2 Multiplayer Review
Infinity Ward’s rebooted Modern Warfare 2 brings back a more classic Call of Duty multiplayer experience than we’ve seen in recent years, with maps better in line with traditional 6v6 play and dial-back movement mechanics. Modern Warfare 2’s gameplay really feels like a refreshing return to old times for Call of Duty, but unfortunately, the package feels lacking and the gun customization is overly complicated.
Overall, Modern Warfare 2’s multiplayer is the fastest-paced shooter you’d expect. The standard maps have been scaled down for 6v6 matches this year, so there are fewer quiet and turbulent moments, and you almost always find yourself in the thick of the action. Modern Warfare 2 also dials back the extremely fast-paced movement of recent years, but that doesn’t mean you can’t choose the run-and-gun playstyle. Gameplay is also a bit less twitchy, as the movement is more on par with the original Modern Warfare series than in the 2019 version.
Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Multiplayer Review – Meet The New COD, Same As The Old COD
Sliding doesn’t feel as fast and fluid as in Modern Warfare 2019 and the bunny-hopping movement has been reduced a bit since the beta. You can still jump around a corner, but there isn’t an overly aggressive momentum buildup that starts you jumping all over the map. It also makes the multiplayer movement feel more grounded and slow-paced than some of the franchise’s previous entries, which is a great change. The past few years of Call of Duty have left much of the casual player base at a loss trying to counter the hopping and sliding frenzy.
Modern Warfare 2 launched with exclusive mods, perks, and killstreaks, but some notable features are missing from this year’s game at launch. Call of Duty usually gives players a Barracks section of the menu with leaderboards and a combat record to see how they’re performing, but Barracks is completely absent in Modern Warfare 2. It’s really frustrating because I’ve had many good games and some pretty terrible ones, but I have no way of seeing my overall performance. With no statistics to judge my progress, matches are becoming less profitable over time. Yes, it’s just an arcade shooter, but it’s still good to see if I keep improving, or gauge my success in the different game modes. Call of Duty games usually have a whole section of Boot Camp and Milestone challenges that can be viewed and completed for XP and Calling Card rewards, but they are also not included.
Another pitfall for Infinity Ward is that Modern Warfare 2 is alienating a substantial portion of the playerbase at launch with the lack of a hardcore playlist, which the developer calls and calls the “Tier 1” mode. That will now release on November 16 with the launch of Season 1 and Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0. There is a whole community of hardcore players who always get to play this mode at launch, who had no idea that their favorite playlist would not be available. All these missing features and the lack of a hardcoded playlist are a boring one, as it is an otherwise refreshing return to the classic Call of Duty.
One of the biggest flaws of Modern Warfare 2019 was the map pool that was designed around massive spaces that could be used for all modes, different player counts, and play styles. This was an issue because Call of Duty’s multiplayer doesn’t work well with a one-size-fits-all approach. Thankfully, Modern Warfare 2 offers standard maps that are optimally designed with the core 6v6 experience in mind, while Ground War largely has “battle maps” for the mod. There are some standard maps that are also a piece of a larger Ground War map, but the standard version of the map still feels reasonably sized for core multiplayer. For example, Mercado Las Almas is a solid 6v6 map for all game modes, but the location can also be found in the Las Almas setting of the Guijaro Ground War map.
There are 10 standard maps and five battle maps. Standout maps include Mercado Las Almas, a small market with fast-moving routes. No matter which mode you choose, there’s always some action going on at Mercado. Another robust map is Crown Raceway, a night map set on a Formula 1 racetrack. This layout doesn’t feature the classic three-lane map design, but it’s not overly complicated, and the map flows really well in all game modes.
Of course, almost every Call of Duty has an unpopular or controversial map, and this year it’s the Santa Sena Border Crossing. It’s an odd layout, as it’s a long strip of highway surrounded by cars. There are a few small buildings on both sides of the highway, but the map leaves a lot to be desired in terms of variety. Most battles are nothing more than a traffic jam of cars, many of which will explode with damage. It only takes one grenade or killstreak to set off the chain reaction of exploding cars, which can quickly become fatal.
Unlike previous Modern Warfare, which had mostly monotonous maps with a washed out color palette, Modern Warfare 2’s maps include more colorful environments. These maps are much easier on the eyes than their predecessor, and the variety of map locations as well as the pop of color help to avoid any overload of monotony, allowing one to appreciate the vibrancy of maps like Crown Raceway and Mercado Is.
The standard multiplayer in Modern Warfare 2 has 10 game modes to choose from. This includes core game modes such as Team Deathmatch, Domination, Hardpoint, Search and Destroy, and Free-for-All, and all of which can provide a good time in Modern Warfare 2. Sadly, there are only two new modes being introduced here. Prisoner Rescue and Knockout are called, and they leave a lot to be desired in terms of objective gameplay.
Prisoner Rescue is a 6v6 mode that requires players to rescue or try to save two prisoners on the map. Knockout is a very similar 6v6 round-based mode, with fast rounds in a best-of-five match where both teams fight to have a bag of cash. Prisoner Rescue and Knockout are both no-response modes, but players can revive their fallen teammates to bring them back into the match.
Both new 6v6 mods are heavy, and it’s a shame that the two new mods added this year are so similar to each other. Knockout or prisoner defense both play out similarly, with very few teammates ever bothering to play the objective during team deathmatch rounds, which can often happen in Call of Duty mode. Unless measures are in place to entice players to play with real objective, matches can often become a kill fest that goes on time rather than scores. Both modes appear to feature a non-reaction mode that plays faster than Search and Destroy, but both feature some of Call of Duty’s previous modes, such as Black Ops 4’s Counter-Strike-like Heist mode. than lacks any real creativity.
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Any new 2v2 or 3v3 objective modes are conspicuously absent, such as Modern Warfare 2019’s 2v2 gunfight mode or Vanguard’s Champion Hill. Gunfight was one of the most pleasant surprises of modern warfare, and it provided much more adrenaline-fueled and tactical challenge than you’d get in the high player counts of knockout or prisoner rescue. Not only does Modern Warfare 2 introduce such a new mode, but gunfight is absent – at least at launch.
Ground War comes back for those who want a bigger fight than 6v6, again featuring 32v32 massive combat that is played on huge maps. There are two Ground War modes available, with a choice of Standard or Assault mode. Standard Ground War is much like Modern Warfare 2019’s breakthrough mode, which operates as an oversized domination match, with five control points to capture and hold points. This standard mode is chaotic fun, with tank battles, aerial support, boat battles and underwater battles. It really feels like Call of Duty’s sandbox mode, and there’s something here for everyone. Ground War has a really strong map pool, each with lots of building variety and verticality to cater for all kinds of play styles and weapon types. Ground War: Assault, meanwhile, is a team deathmatch-style mode with a points system that goes beyond mere kills to rack up scores. You are also awarded points for shooting down enemy killers or destroying their vehicles. Unfortunately, this feels like the weaker of the two modes.
Assault is a mini-feeling of 20v20, with Ground War maps shrinking accordingly, cutting out areas of water and open ground. This mainly leaves you fighting through streets and buildings at the center point of the map. Taking out swimming and additional vehicle opportunities is a bit cumbersome as water combat is a blast and works great for ground combat. Another low point is that the attack is also padded with bots. Each team has a set of AI soldiers, and that doesn’t really add to the experience. The AI is a weak adversary, and those fights feel pretty pointless. It’s also a bit of a hassle to take the bot out easily, but then is immediately smoked by the human player running after them. It’ll be a game mode that only serves to let new players dip their toes into Call of Duty, but otherwise, it’s a place where more experienced players will likely come to bot farms and level up their weapons.
Another major addition is the ability to play Modern Warfare 2’s standard maps in third person. It’s a separate playlist with mixed response mode. Earlier, in our beta impressions, I mentioned myself getting with some motion sickness while playing. Thankfully, third-person mode is one of the most notable changes from the beta, as Infinity Ward adjusts perspective when aiming, so you’ll only switch from third-person to first-person perspective when aiming-down-sight. With a radius of over 4x zoom.
Changing the perspective helps, and I now find myself able to play and enjoy the mode without feeling uneasy with the constant swapping of perspective. There’s still a minor character Bob in third person, but nothing that stops me from playing. It’s a much more enjoyable experience than the previous style of constantly switching between perspectives. With something closer to the traditional third-person approach of 2009’s Modern Warfare 2’s Third-Person Team Tactical Mode, it now feels like a playlist I can revisit myself to break up the monotony of standard matches, And it would be nice to see the fancy operator skins I’ll get from a future battle pass.
Although Modern Warfare 2 takes us back to the past with classic movement and traditional map design, a component advancing the Infinity Ward Gunsmith weapon customization feature. This year’s Gunsmith adds a whole new layer of complexity to unlock weapons and craft the best builds. Gunsmith’s new platform system is designed to essentially eliminate the grind of unlocking the same attachment for different guns over and over, which sounds great in theory, but it’s actually a different type. Time consuming headache.
Unlocking guns and attachments is no longer just a simple process of leveling up and using the weapon you want. Instead, you’re only forced to use weapons in other classes to unlock attachments and additional weapons. For example, I couldn’t just level up and use m4 to get what I wanted for it. Some attachments were locked behind the use and leveling of sniper rifles and battle rifles. For reference, I’m about level 48 at 55, and there are still a lot of guns and attachments locked behind other gun requirements. I’d already have most of my weapons unlocked in previous games.
Overall, there’s no need to unlock the same attachments over and over, but the complexity of how the entire platform system is designed can be overwhelming for new or casual players. I’m not a big fan of snipers or light machine guns, but I’m inevitably being forced to level up to get some attachments for my assault rifles and submachine guns. Additionally, some people want to hop in with a favorite weapon or two and use guns they don’t like, they just want to get an optic or barrel attachment.
Another Gunsmith complication comes from Modern Warfare 2’s new fine-tuning feature. Once you reach a maximum level with a weapon that can be customized, you unlock the ability to heal each individual attachment. For example, you can choose to reduce recoil when using a specific attachment, but at the cost of reducing the handling of the weapon. This can be overwhelming for a casual player who doesn’t want to worry about the hassle of building a “meta weapon,” but it’s great for the hardcore fanatic to make the most of their favorite weapons. On another note, Modern Warfare 2 is dialing back the adaptation with a limit of five attachments, down from the 10 attachments in last year’s Vanguard. So, it’s a nice regression in an otherwise overly complex weapon customization feature.
The game also includes a shooting range, where you can now go to test out the guns you have spent time making. This is something the community is demanding, and it’s great to have the option of testing out different attachments to find something that better suits your playing style. Modern Warfare 2’s guns also look and sound great, with reload animations and gunfire audio on par with Modern Warfare 2019’s stellar quality.
As mentioned earlier, Modern Warfare 2 also includes new maneuvering mechanics, such as swimming, mantle, and hanging from the sides or sides of vehicles. These new features are best used in Ground War, where mantelling and ledge-hanging can be great when you’re parachuting over a building and want to play on a sneaky roof. The new options can make for some really interesting plays, and it can be very useful to ride and hold onto the exterior of an already full vehicle.
Modern Warfare 2 also comes packed with Spec Ops Mode, a two-player co-op experience of massive missions taking place in Al Majra, the new map location for Warzone 2.0. There are three missions available with more to come after launch. So far, my time with these missions makes the mod feel somewhere in between the 2009 Modern Warfare 2 and the original Spec Ops experience in Modern Warfare 2019. These missions are a bit more open world than the small set pieces used in fan-favourites. 2009 version, but this reboot isn’t as short and doesn’t suffer from the same heavy enemy spawn system that Modern Warfare had in 2019.
Defender: Once upon a time on Mount Zaya good throwback for fans. It’s a survival mode that requires you to defend a location from increasingly difficult waves of enemies, and the map setting is a larger version of Modern Warfare 3’s Dome map, which also has a survival mode. Beyond that, though, there’s nothing particularly standout here, but it can be a fun co-op experience and a nice break from multiplayer matches.
Spec Ops’ version of Modern Warfare 2 also introduces a new layer to the mod with kitsch, like a set loadout of perks, field upgrades, and killstreaks to suit the role you choose. For example, the Assault Kit lets you equip an additional armor plate, and leveling up the kit will give you additional benefits, such as faster reloads, steams, and additional armor plates. You can easily get through all three Special Ops missions without using these kits at all, but they’re beneficial if you’re going for fast completion times. Hopefully the kits will be more beneficial to the game’s seasonal content, as they’re not really worth grinding for, however. Activision says the kit will also be used for Modern Warfare 2’s upcoming raid feature, which the publisher describes as a three-player cooperative mode that mixes combat and puzzles, and will probably be used better there. Will go
I’m playing Modern Warfare 2 on PlayStation 5, and the first two days were tough with constant freezes and crashes, but an update has dramatically reduced the number of crashes for me. Others have experienced various bugs, Spec Ops glitches, and features like pinging and weapon tuning are currently disabled due to game-breaking issues. With all this in mind, I’m still having a great time playing Modern Warfare 2, despite a rough launch weekend. However, it cannot be overlooked that those core multiplayer features are missing in the overall package. It’s definitely the gameplay and the classic feel that saves the experience for me.
Modern Warfare 2’s gunplay and fast time-to-kill all feel very similar to Modern Warfare 2019. However, Infinity Ward certainly improved a lot in what worked and didn’t in the previous game. The scaled-back maps certainly make for better pacing, the less hectic movement isn’t so overwhelming, and the all-new mobility features make the game so enjoyable from match to match. One shouldn’t load this game into a match expecting anything like the original Modern Warfare 2, but all issues aside, the gameplay of this rebooted version serves as a positive successor to Modern Warfare 2019.
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