As most of you know, I finally got around to playing Modern Warfare 2. Unfortunately, I couldn't help but read all the reviews of this game before I played it (nobody would shut the fuck up about it for months, as you may remember), so I had to do my usual thing in reverse.
I am pleased to announce however that most of the criticism Modern Warfare 2 has received is complete bollocks.
The two eminent criticisms are that the plot is a little whacky at times and that "all the work went into multiplayer."
Basically, the thing about the Modern Warfare games (as with a lot of modern war games) is that they need to think of a good reason to put you in control of a myriad lethal weapons, and it has to be entertaining - it has to tell a dramatic story. While MW2 doesn't strike me as the most believable game all of the time, it's usually only a few crazy moments that are still, in a way, fun.
Perhaps the only thing I'd complain about is the snow-mobile section which unfortunately occurs at the beginning of the game.
Aside from that, nothing really tripped my Major-Bullshit-O-Meter. In fact, a lot of the more awesome sections seem to be the ones that people complain about. Perhaps it is at times trying to be a little "Hollywood" as someone once put it, but frankly, it does it well, it's fun and engaging, and honestly I don't even entirely agree: despite the occasional over-the-top moments, the game is even more cynical than the first one.
Hollywood doesn't have the balls to make a major production like that.
The other common complaint is actually offensive. It's quite clear that the majority of work did NOT go into the multiplayer, which consists of a few basic maps, mostly based on conversions of single-player maps, and is actually relatively basic.
The multi-player is so strong because it is based off the single-player.
Also, I don't understand why anyone can look at the jaw-dropping visuals and set-pieces, hear the pulse-pounding music by Hans mother-fucking Zimmer (of Gladiator and The Lion King fame) or the actually pretty good voice acting... and think no effort went into the single-player.
It's short, yes, but short and sweet, with well executed- if not outright beautiful- levels and loads of replay value.
This is just the sort of thing that pisses artists, developers, etc, right the hell off. Wannabe critics completely skim over the extreme amounts of effort they put into something just to find one silly element and try to discount the hours that was put into the product.
At least have the decency to give credit where credit is due. Is Modern Warfare a perfect game? No, but then I've never played a perfect game. It doesn't exist. It's definitely good enough, and I'd sooner recommend it than 95% of the games I've suffered through in the last few years.
If you want soul-crushing realism, go play ArmA or America's Army; both are very good. But believe it or not, Infinity Ward's Modern Warfare 2 is thrice as thought-provoking, entertaining and dramatic (at least thrice as dramatic). It's quite sad to see people critique the game and completely miss the underlying themes.
Incidentally, I have to say, I don't usually mention graphics except to tell other people to shut up about them. But I do want to say that I am very impressed by the visuals in MW2.
I'm not even an American and it brought a chill to my spine to see Washington DC in flames.
Speaking of, I hope Modern Warfare 3, which is apparently coming out soon here (expect it out sometime next decade), features more than just Americans and Brits. While that is VERY cool, making the protagonists a Scot and an Englishman, I'd expect to see some other nationalities represented in what's meant to be a game about World War 3.
I don't mind the notion of sticking with the British SAS and US Army Rangers (both are cooler than a penguin ice-cube lodged in a glacier) but hey. You had the stones to include the Brits AND even make them the good guys who in the last stage kill you know whats. Other nations have cool shit too.
Not that they'll ever produce anyone as manly as Captain MacTavish, who seems to inhale air and exhale pure testosterone.
Incidentally, there aren't many antagonists that pissed me off as much as the one from Modern Warfare 2. I was so glad to see him die. Motherfucker.
Oh, but one last thing. Someone explain to me why the whole "shooting civilians" thing actually almost got this game banned? There's even an almost insulting warning of this single fucking level at the beginning of the game - asking if you want to skip it; doing so would result in complete confusion. Nobody ever outright says "we had a spy who shot Russian civilians in an airport, now the world thinks we did it."
Seriously, look, fuck off. Stop trying to censor what I fucking play, view or read about, you complete cunts. It's none of your business, and how the hell is this any worse than Grand Theft Auto, exactly? It's not like Infinity Ward had the guts to put children in this busy airport - apparently Russian children are banned from airports or something, because I didn't see a single one to shoot in their non-existent, pixelated, not-fucking-real face.
Haven't these stupid wankers figured out why video games such as this one are popular to begin with? They allow us to experience things, do things, act out roles that we cannot or do not want to do in real life. Modern Warfare 2 is not going to make anyone aside from morons who never picked up that the game is actually anti-war join the Marines and actually want to kill people.
This game lets me use expensive, deadly military hardware, knowing it isn't real and isn't dangerous or illegal.
It lets me shoot people knowing that they are not real, and I am not really killing a fellow human, something I find utterly, utterly repulsive in real life.
More so than most others, I understand the difference between fiction and reality. No, really, I understand it better than probably even anyone reading this does. Given my abso-fucking-lute grasp of this concept, I can officially tell you "moral guardians" to go fuck a tree in Pakistan and stop trying to tell me what I am allowed to see or play, you regressive dick-wit cabbages.
Modern Warfare 2: 9/10