Why Do We Keep Buying The Same Call of Duty Game Over And Over?

Posted by on November 12, 2011 at 5:21 pm

I bought my first Call of Duty game two years ago. It was our store’s super-exciting Modern Warfare 2 midnight event that we’d planned for over a month. We had a huge tournament, caught the whole thing on camera, and hundreds of people left our store with copies of the latest and greatest in Activision’s shooter franchise. I was so swept in the whirlwind that I even plunked down the $60, minus employee discount, because I wanted in on the whole thing. I heard the multi-player was pretty “sick” and so I was up until the crack of dawn playing both through the single player campaign (which I almost beat) and the multi-player (which I was viciously ruined). Flash forward to just two days ago when Kelly hands me Modern Warfare 3 and as I go in for some social slaughter, I swear nothing’s changed at all.

Is It Really The Same?

The same menus. The same guns. The same perks. A lot of the same maps. I didn’t even have to pay for the game to feel like I was being ripped off. To answer the title, you could easily say that ‘it’s still fun’, but why in the world do we need to pay $60 for a new disc when the experience is the same? Now look at a game like Call of Duty: Black Ops and there’s a certifiable difference in the Vietnam-era setting and weaponry, but at its root, it’s still the same slick, fast-paced shoot’em up action that the series has been known for. Kelly equated it to the Madden of shooting in which the formula was achieved long ago and now Activision is just tightening it up.

To their credit, the single-player campaign is different and it was no doubt, minute to minute, the most expensive part of the game to develop. But let’s be fair, that thing’s over before it begins. You’re not buying a Call of Duty game for a half-dozen scripted hours, you’re buying it to cap dudes online over and over. The biggest addition this year is the Special Ops Survival mode (which we’ll get into deeper later on), which is a carry over from the Survival (read: “ZOMBEESSSZZZ!!!”) modes in Treyarch’s games (World At War, Black Ops). Survival here is a blast, but worth a full new game? Hrm, we’ll see.

It’s Not Like The Competition’s Doing Anything

But they’re trying. While waiting in line for Skyrim, I encountered more than a few people who swore off Modern Warfare 3 for Battlefield 3, which is EA/DICE’s latest foray into their larger-format shooter. They include vehicles, massive maps, and it does feel like a pretty different title. On the other hand, it’s also not nearly as polished as Activision’s games are and they’re fighting an uphill battle after last year’s Medal of Honor by Danger Close failed to capture hearts or minds. EA is also bringing us the first game from Respawn Entertainment, which was most of the talent behind Infinity Ward before their exodus last year (which required Activision enlist Sledgehammer Games to finish Modern Warfare 3). With three different shooters under its belt, you could say they’re trying to compensate for their lack of blockbuster titles, but like with Guitar Hero, they’re really just trying to copy their success. Of course, this also sets up EA better for when the value of Call of Duty bottoms out, which is inevitable.

You already know whether you want a new Call of Duty game, but there’s honestly nothing in Modern Warfare 3 that they couldn’t have sold to new gamers as DLC.

Don't Keep This a
Secret, Share It

  • Guest

    Modern Warfare 3 isn’t that bad of a game but could of been so much
    better if the passion, money and hard work was put into it. It is just
    amazing to see that Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 in less than 9 months
    made almost the same amount of changes Modern Warfare 3 did in
    comparison to Modern Warfare 2, which had a 2 year development time -_-.
    Modern Warfare 3 is not worth $60 at all, it is more like a $35 or $40
    game at most, because it adds and changes so little. I seriously think
    most of the hard work and money went only into the Wii version, but then
    again it was made by Treyarch so I expect a great game from them. The
    Wii version has better graphics than it’s predecessors, smooth online
    gameplay and has the full package as its HD console counterparts for a
    more worth it price of $50.

  • The picture that hangs over the article itself pretty much says it all about the repetitiveness of the CoD series ever since Modern Warfare 1.  That is all.

  • Jedijax

    I only play the campaign, so yeah, some of us like the single-player experience. I would never change the storyline and immersion of the campaign for hours of mindless shooting.

  • Iclarke1

    I feel as though COD mass popularity is infringing upon the creativity of game development. Everyone now wants to cash in on the formula COD uses. Also, playing nothing but COD is really bad for the human brain. FPS games have been found to increase cortisol, a stress hormone which exhausts or bodies resources, and taxes our immune systems. Id link the study but you’ll need access to academic journals.

    • 719

      what do you mean the call of duty formula, if history recalls that system was implement in several games before COD in illusion, the game play- unlock upgrade/unlock style- was implement in the battlefield series first and was ripped off on standard Fps even back then.
      -you cant claim that COD style is original in any way.

       in respect, the reason why the game is so popular is that it focus is on the single man army style rather then teamwork and its fast pace game play rush is what gives the excitement in playing, it is in the same light that Halo made its money.
      -Besides fun normally incorporates danger in many aspects.

      As for FPS games being found “under-statistics” its a rant that can play an finite number of cards that say conflicting things. there are statistics that say claim that any form of video imagery, even still life paintings can have a negative effect on ones health status.
      -if games really cause that effect step down and stop playing and quit spouting nonsense.

      • Berklain

        It’s a single man game only if you want it to be.

  • Berklain

    I completely agree. I also bought a copy at launch. Oh boy.

  • Drago_Drake

    Mw3 is not a rerun of the Modern Warfare series. It has different guns, the maps are revamped, and they have drastically brought down the power of “noob tubes” which I love. I think that it is an amazing game greater than Mw2 because they have fixed the slight errors in it. Black Ops totally ruined the Call of Duty franchise. When they tried to fix what Mw2 made wrong they ended up screwing the entire game up. Anyone have any comments they can talk to me over Ps3, Drago_Drake