November 24, 2007

Xbox 360:Call of duty 4

It's amazing what a change in time can do. Infinity Ward's latest war effort takes their Call of Duty franchise into the present, inserting the smooth first-person mechanics into an engrossing scenario that tops anything competitors have come up with. This is the first-person shooter of 2007.

Everything from the intensity of the combat to the intricately rendered visuals came together for the fourth entry in this war franchise. The experience is fresh, though it maintains the typical mechanics Call of Duty fans love. The feel of the guns, the pacing, and the shootouts are all trademark Infinity Ward.

Duty's immersive aspects run from the loading screen to the animation. While waiting for the stage to load, the player is treated to intricate tactical maps, with news reports and briefings heightening the experience. You're unlikely to even realize this is how the game pulls data from the disc.

Adding to the atmosphere is some stunning animated routines. The sense of firing a gun is completed as enemies enter into one of countless death throes, the best coming as a sniper rifle picks off an enemy terrorist and his legs let go beneath him. The feedback is instantaneous and leaves no doubt that the shot was success.

Variety continues Call of Duty 4's dominance of this genre, not only mixing locales, but mission structure. Overly large gun battles with hundreds of terrorists are not uncommon, yet the developers have mixed in levels where the struggle is confined to only a few kills as players sneak through the open fields of radioactive Chernobyl with only a sniper rifle to save themselves. Intensity and pressure are unmatched.

Discussion of the single player campaign is incomplete without brining forward those moments that make the entire experience memorable. Rivaling the best of Hollywood, all cinematics are done with the in-game engine. Destruction is unrivaled in terms of video games during the surprise at the end of Act 1, and intensified with a near repeat towards the end of Act III. This is masterful storytelling in a game filled with action.

Multi-player is only the topping on this unquestionably classic video game. Ranking systems and skill ratings now seem out of date as the leveling up system implemented here. The player unlocks modes, additional power-ups, and special features as they climb through the ranks. All of this tracked with an easy to grasp point system, displayed via a meter on the bottom of the screen.

Level design when online (or locally) sets Call of Duty 4 apart. Settings feature a wide range of designs; many which have countless buildings players are able to maneuver in and out of for cover. Open areas are a sure, fast death. Tactical features are balanced with the all-out shooting flawlessly.

After the countless World War II runs, it's a refreshing change of style and pacing that Infinity Ward has chosen for this latest sequel. While other games have explored the modern battlefield, none have come this close to fully capturing all aspects of current day warfare this successfully. There are no aspects of Call of Duty 4 to pick apart. It's that close to perfection.

Call of Duty 4 is rated M (Mature) by the esrb for Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, and Strong Language. This game can also be found on PC and PS3.

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