I finished the single-player campaign of Call Of Duty 4: Moder Warfare after my second session with the game. I reckon it was around nine hours total – felt just about right. All told, it was a great experience. The very heavily scripted levels provided stunning set-pieces, but whenever you hit a more difficult section, repetition quickly wore down the enthusiasm. This does not happen with Halo, for instance, but when things always unfold in the same manner, it can get tiresome. I have no intention of replaying it, but the arcade mode does warrant a return to many levels. It basically gives you a score based on your efficiency. You’re encouraged to keep a “streak” going, chaining your kills into one long combo. Something like this should really be in most games, I think. It isn’t quite as polished as the other aspects of the game, but I do like it.
After finishing the campaign, I died some 250+ times in multiplayer (getting 190+ kills in, myself), today. The multiplayer is so good. I’m not sure if it has that Halo longevity, but they’ve found something of their own here. It feels quite a bit like Counter-Strike, with a dose of Ghost Recon thrown in. It’s fast and brutal, but rewards tactics. The leveling system they have in place is very well paced and balanced – there’s always something good to work towards, but you’re not useless when starting out. This is a problem I have with most online games: your playtime isn’t working towards anything. Halo 3 makes your time worthwhile by the virtue of its all-encompassing stats and reviewable videos, Call Of Duty solves the issue by integrating the leveling system.
So as the Americans say, a “perfect rental”. Except if you’re into Xbox Live, this is a game I see being an online favorite for a long time to come.