Will Modern Warfare 3 Steal Battlefield 3′s Thunder? Probably Not.
Posted by Yogizilla on November 3, 2011
I’ve been so deep in Battlefield 3 that I almost forgot Modern Warfare 3 comes out next week. It was my fellow clanmate Joe Fisher (PhallicDragon on XBox LIVE) that reminded me. A small part of me is excited but, for the most part, this will be a game I will put on rotation so I don’t over-play Battlefield 3.
Every credible non-fanboy review I’ve read seems to point at the fact that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 feels more like an expansive map pack than a full sequel. While Joe and other fellow gamers say that Battlefield 3 and Modern Warfare 3 are too distinct to compare, I already know Battlefield 3 will be my main game. I also know that the Gears of War 3 Season Pass looks more tempting than a Call of Duty Elite subscription.
With that in mind, there are a few things that make Modern Warfare 3 and Elite subscription tempting…
The Newness Of Modern Warfare 3
The Kill Confirmed deathmatch mode in Modern Warfare 3 may actually put an end to camping. You don’t get your kills counted unless you grab enemy dog tags. I dig this and it may very well be the main mode I’ll play, unless people play Search & Destroy (still my preference due to the focus on stealth, infiltration, and team tactics).
Teams that just hang back to get killstreaks going will struggle as you can’t remotely grab dog tags. Sorry, campers and lone wolfs.. You’ll have to learn some teamwork.
Killstreaks have been tweaked so that high-level soldiers can get dynamic killstreaks unlocked in-game. This makes sense as something like the Scavenger perk doesn’t help unless you’re low on ammo, which usually happens after you mow down some enemies.
Now killstreaks may be all too familar to us by now but the way they are presented is different now. Killstreaks in MW3 will appear in the form of a skill tree of sorts now. You have your Assault, Support, and Specialist development paths. The latter is reserved for players that have logged many hours and/or kills.
Game Informer had a great preview on these features and more in their Zelda 25th Anniversary issue. It’s definitely a good read and I don’t usually pay much mind to professional reviews so that’s saying something!
Call Of Duty Elite: For Competitive And Social Soldiers
From what I’ve read, just about anything cool and new in Modern Warfare 3 is reserved for Elite subscribers or those that pre-order the Hardened Edition. Call of Duty Elite goes beyond your typical season pass and DLC discount. Here’s some intel I collected:
- New unlockables will be available every month for the first nine months of the game or so. 20 items are already in the pipelines, if I understand correctly.
- It seems clan features are only available to Elite subscribers.. Or at least the good stuff is available on a subscriber-only basis.
- Elite subscribers can find folks with similar interests by way of group memberships. There will be in-game and web-based features supporting the social media features.
- Those that subscribe before November 13th will get extra bonuses. You get special Founder status.. Whatever that means!
- Elite-only online sessions will run on dedicated servers. Supposedly, there will be heavy moderation to curb the cheating, boosting, and spawn camping that we all “love”.
So, really, Call of Duty Elite seems almost required if you want to truly enjoy Modern Warfare 3. I’m going to give the game a whirl out of the box before I invest more money here, though.
The thing that rubs me wrong here is that I don’t want a Modern Warfare 3 Hardened Edition to get avatar goodies and extra crap I don’t really need and likely won’t use. I’d be happy if, as someone taking a risk with pre-order, I get a discount for the Elite subscription. Instead, pre-orders mostly give you discounts on crap most of us don’t need or a chance to win prizes. Whoop-dee-doo!
Besides the social media benefits, the one thing that really appeals to me about Call of Duty Elite is the clan XP boost. This will make recruiting much easier but I wonder if the boost is only for other Elite subscribers. That would be a HUGE missed opportunity for Infinity Ward!
Again, it would have been nice to see Regular, Hardened, and Prestige Edition. $100 for a game I’m on the fence about seems like too much.. But $75 I can deal with. Just saying.
The Battlefield VS. Modern Warfare Battle Continues
Online play issues aside, I’d say DICE got Battlefield 3 right and it stands as one of the best shooters in a decade.. And maybe even EVER!
Still, there are opportunities on both sides of this battle. Battlefield 3 is my go-to game right now and in the foreseeable future but, as I mentioned before, Modern Warfare 3 is positioned to be the choice shooter for competitive gamers.
I think Infinity Ward messed up by scrapping the few things that make Black Ops a fun game (like Gun Game, which was actually quite neat). CoD points and challenges, for example, are a great way to ease the pain of constant grinding. It’d be nice to at least have an XP boost up until the first prestige. That’d make pre-orders more sexy. Battlefield 3 was smart by making mid-range weapons available to boot and maxing out ranks at Colonel. This allows you to focus on “leveling up” your weapons, vehicles, and classes.
What this does for Battlefield 3 is give you tons of achievements to aim for without making it a mundane grind. I love their progress system. It’s very natural and fun, whereas Call of Duty feels more like a chore at times.
If you get your hands on a Limited Edition Battlefield 3, the first DLC is free and it will be much more than a map pack. Modern Warfare 3 requires you to pony up more money to get the good stuff. Meh.
Supposedly, there will be some imports for us Black Ops players that have been burned. Battlefield 3 has those too but it’s nothing really special. I reckon the imports on Modern Warfare 3 will be similar, though some say the map packs will work on MW3 – I sure hope so since that was mostly a waste of money!
Battlefield 3 has stellar vehicular combat. I know real vehicles would throw off the balance in Modern Warfare 3 but it’s still worth noting. Battlefield just has more variety and fun right out of the box.
Same Old Call Of Duty Grind
I’ll be honest here. I only prestiged about once or twice on Modern Warfare 2 and I don’t think I prestiged even once on Black Ops. I’m pretty bored with the Modern Warfare game mechanics.
So why even bother to get Modern Warfare 3, you ask?
It’ll be the game that all our friends will be playing. It’ll still be one of the main games to play competitively, too. Battlefield 3 is not quite there yet as there is no private match option, sadly.
We’ll just have to wait and see if this installment will be a long-term play or a “flavor of the month” type deal. As much as I may have a bad taste in my mouth, I am curious. I wonder if Infinity Ward will really step up their game here…
Oh yeah, Modern Warfare 3 single player will continue the Modern Warfare 2 storyline, too. *shrug*
BTW, am I the only one that misses the Eavesdrop perk from CoD4? It’d be quite useful when forced to do in-game chat only…