Billy Murray, the voice actor behind Captain Price (also him off The Bill and those legal adverts) may have outed the next Modern Warfare game in development at Infinity Ward.
UPDATE: Infinity Ward has denied these claims in a brusque statement.Click here to read more...
Has Activision smuggled old Call of Duty maps in to Modern Warfare 3? It would appear so, with the site MP1ST diving in to the record-breaking shooter's code to discover old Modern Warfare 1 and 2 maps hiding away. Activision has made an absolute killing on Call of Duty map packs - and we can only blame ourselves for paying those extortionate prices - and it would appear a retro themed chunk of content is in the pipeline for MW3.Click here to read more...
Call of Duty has been a phenomenal success for Activision, raking in profits by the billions and ensnaring a community numbering in the tens of millions. And it's all down to the online multiplayer, with its persistent levelling, customizable arsenal and deck of perks. I, for one, am addicted despite my multitude of misgivings, such as how over-powered the aerial killstreaks in Modern Warfare 2 proved to be. Well, Infinity Ward seem to be aware of this, admitting MW3 will be put an emphasis on the ground warfare the first title popularized so well.Click here for more on MW3's multiplayer
If ever there was a mod that could get me to fork out a load of money to assemble a rig and switch to playing Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare on the PC, rather than my Xbox, it'd be this one because it looks awesome! The premise is simple, it's Modern Warfare, only in a galaxy far far away!Click here to see the love child of Star Wars and Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare!
Back in 1997, a small British-based developer named DMA Design created Grand Theft Auto, and in doing so kick-started a golden age in sandbox gaming. It also drew a hell of a lot of attention from tabloid newspapers at the time, thanks mostly to its controversial ability to let players mow down pedestrians in carjacked vehicles. It wasn't the first of its kind to do so, with the bloodthirsty Carmageddon pulling off a similar feat some months earlier.
By the time Grand Theft Auto 3 hit store shelves in 2001, DMA (now working under their new 'Rockstar' monicker) knew exactly what to expect from the world's journalists, and had included everything from drug deals to prostitution in an effort to ramp up the controversy factor. It was a watershed moment, not just in terms of gameplay, but also that of media reaction to violence in video games.
How did this ultraviolence and the reaction to it shape the future of video games?
The ongoing legal feud between former Infinity Ward heads', Jason West and Vince Zampella, and their former employers, Activision, continues to develop, as the pair seek to void their original contract with the publishing giant. Citing production of Modern Warfare proceeding without their consent, if West and Zampella were to win the case, it would force Activision to share custody of the franchise with the now EA-bound duo.Hit the jump for more
Just this last Sunday, we cast our nostalgic gaze back to Goldeneye's 'Facility', a level we loved considerably. However, it's not like Bond's urinal-shattering Soviet op is the only FPS level we deem fit for a feature article. In fact, we have ten in mind, from crashing on a lost alien structure, sniping in the irradiated ruins of Chernobyl, to dropping our first companion-cube down a rift in space/time. So, and drum-roll please, Dealspwn presents the Top 10 FPS Levels!
Call of Duty has its fair share of spectacular levels, and I almost plumped for Black Ops' jaw-dropping prison break, 'Vortuka'. But, in the end, I settled for Modern Warfare's flashback to 1970s Pripyat, where a young Lieutenant Price joins the late Captain MacMilan for a special op as they track a nuclear arms deal in the hope of assassinating one Imran Zakhaev. It's a cracking level, as you sneak or crawl past enemy patrols, dropping guards with a suppressed round from your sniper rifle. Notice how hard MW2 strives, but fails, to replicate this experience?
Timesplitters 2 is simply overflowing with wacky but wonderful levels. I'm particularly partial to the wild west detour. However, I just can't overlook your trip back to 17th century France, and a cathedral overrun with zombies. It's classic Timesplitters, tongue firmly in cheek, brimming with great humour and even better design. It's tough deciding what crazy era-related adventure to decide from in TS, and in the end it was the plight of a poor hunchbacked gentleman you can rescue that swayed my hand.
Despite it's title, serious is not a word we'd use to describe the adventures of Sam Stone. It's a mad, wild ride, replete with miles long vistas, thousands of enemies, hundred foot or more tall bosses, and some of the best guns in the genre. For SS2, we settled on the 'Great Pyramid' level, where Mental's HQ, fashioned as a giant Egyptian pyramid, reveals itself to be a heavily armed, weaponised structure. It's a level chock-full of classic Serious Sam stuff, like vast environments crawling with hundreds upon hundreds of enemies hurling themselves into your sea of bullets, as the Great Pyramid itself lurks on the horizon.
Whether you're storming a cargo ship during a ridiculously bad patch of weather, sneaking across fields looking for the highest point on the map to set up a birds nest, or tracking a covert team from the safety of an gunship with the intention of providing support fire when it's needed, Modern Warfare is an absolute blast of an first person shooter.
You can grab a copy of the game on the PS3 for £13.99 from Argos, which is almost £2 cheaper than the next best price of £15.91 coming in from Asda.
The campaign for the game is incredibly hard to tear yourself away from once you've started it, and you'll spend your time fighting to thwart a terrorist plot whilst stealthily creeping through the battlefield as an SAS member or running around war torn environments as a US marine.
Visually the game is amazing and there are definitely a couple of moments outside of and during the action that are likely to take your breath away. The sound effect are also hard to fault and the combination of the two really grabs your attention and pulls you into the action.
Combat can be quite relaxed at times, especially when the enemy isn't alerted to your presence or when you're picking them off from a distance as you line them up in the sights' of your sniper rifle's scope. There are of course times when you'll be stuck right in the middle of an exchange of fire with multiple enemies and it's at this point that the action starts to become frantic, the adrenaline starts to enter your system and you can feel your heart beating in your chest.
The multiplayer'll have you going back for more once you've finished the main game and it's pretty hard to avoid become addicted after only a couple of sessions.
This is a good opportunity to pick up a copy of the game if you've not already done so and you'll be investing in a game that's truly brilliant from start to end.
If you can't wait to get back home for your Modern Warfare fix, or you wake up in a cold sweat in the morning and find it hard to get yourself out of the house without going online for a quick skirmish, then why not grab a copy of Modern Warfare: Mobilized to ease the pain of commuting during the day.
At the moment you can pick up the game from HMV for £12.99, which is almost £5 cheaper than the next best price of £17.91 coming in from Asda.
The story takes place five years after the events of the original Modern Warfare in an alternate reality, but you'll still get the same mix of SAS and USMC collaboration in order to overthrow the threats to their countries and return home to be hailed as heroes.
You might think that the transition from consoles and desktops, to handheld might not make for the best game in the world, but it seems like anything with the Modern Warfare name slapped onto it turns to gold.
When you're not starring down the barrel of your gun there are plenty of other things to do, like jumping behind turrets, driving tanks, and getting ready for a fight by creating explosive traps using C4. You'll also be accompanied by two squad mates in a couple of situations.
Multiplayers' supported as well so you'll be able to test out your skills against other players, as well as the AI controlled enemies you'll have to deal with in the single player, provided you're friends also have DSs and you've got access to the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection online service.
Unfortunately, the controls aren't the easiest thing to get the hang of and'll probably lead to the majority of your deaths when you first get your hands on the game.
However, not only is this an acceptable substitute for Modern Warfare whilst your away from home for whatever reason, but it's also great fun to play and you won't be disappointed with it.
Thanks to goonertillidie @ HUKD
The question of Activision instigating a subscription-based membership system for the Call of Duty series has been weighing heavily on our worried minds for some time... and the (albeit slightly suspect) MW gameplay video released yesterday did little to ease our burden. However, Activision's Dan Amrich has stepped forward to nip these rumours in the bud.
"No such [subscription] plan exists for this or any other Call of Duty (including the upcoming Black Ops)."
A team of six Dutch gamers have beaten the world record for consecutive gaming by playing Red Dead Redemption for 50 hours straight. That means no breaks... for anything. Whilst this has been technically achieved before (resulting in the death of a Korean World of Warcraft player), the Guinness team were on hand to monitor the proceedings and ensure the safety of everyone involved.
In a stunning and genuinely heartwarming display of gaming solidarity, the six hardcore contenders started out as competitors, but decided to work together in order to win the title as allies.
“The participants entered as foes and left as worldrecord-holding friends.” - Gaz Deaves, Guinness World Records official
Brothers, we salute you. [Video Games Blogger]
There's no doubt that casual and application games are clawing their way into the games market... but social networking-based games are tipped to become The social network gaming market earned a whopping $639 million dollars last year (exploding from $76 million in 2008)- and according to a new report by the Screen Digest analyst firm, this figure is set to top $1bn by 2012. I can believe it- after all, Zynga (the developers behind the insidious mind control software fantastically-successful Farmville series) is already netting over 100 million dollars! Screen Digest predict that this will start putting the squeeze on the casual and indie scene.
"There is no doubt that the traditional PC casual markets of ‘try and buy’ and subscriptions have come under pressure from the success of games on social networks,"
"As users of social networks have increased and the volume of social games content has expanded rapidly, casual games portals have had to work harder to compete." - Piers Harding Rolls, Screen Digest
So what does this mean for the mainstream games industry? In my opinion, not necessarily that much. Busy people with only a few minutes a day to log on to Facebook or an iPhone app are a very different (and entirely new) consumer base than hardcore gamers... though we can expect big publishers to take a growing interest in the social market. In fact, they already are... [Gamesindustry]
How often do you play social networking-based games? Are they a threat to the games market as a whole... or just a much-need evolution of our beloved medium? Have your say in the comments!
Steam's massive summer sale is going to save us (and make us spend) a lot of money over the next few days- but we're here to shine the Dealspwn spotlight on the best of the bunch. They're currently charging £21.99 for the Call of Duty Collection, which includes Call of Duty, it's expansion pack, Call of Duty 2, Modern Warfare and World at War. This is a major coup, providing you with a virtual saving of £67.96... and is seriously impressive when you consider that the cheapest physical copy of World at War is currently £17.99 by itself!
Right, well let's get on with this. Frankly, I'm sure most of you know (and even own) many of these games, but let's go for a quick rundown anyway.
So, there it is. Whilst it excludes Modern Warfare 2, this deal is still the cheapest and most convenient way of getting your hands on an entire slice of FPS history.
Despite the fact Modern Warfare 2 continues to bestride the first person-shooter-market like a colossus - overshadowing pretty much every other shooter title six months down the line – that's not to say that the original can't still hold it's head high as one of the best FPS titles. So if you’re in the market for a good price on Infinity Ward’s original Modern Warfare, you can pick up the GOTY edition for £17.85 from Shopto. This deal includes both the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game, with Xbox owners enjoying a saving of over £3 on the next best price, while the PS3 version comes in almost £8 cheaper.
COD4: MW alternates between two different story-lines, focusing initially upon S.A.S member Soap MacTavish and then the exploits of an American Special forces squad deployed to the Middle East. Although the game has some emphasis upon realism – it only takes a few bullets to die and the ballistics system is superb – MW does retain the cinematic, slightly linear feel of previous Call of Duty titles. However it’s not like you pay much attention to the slightly choreographed nature of the missions as Infinity Ward hurl you into the most intensive, fast-paced and visceral experience of war portrayed by almost any videogame.
The only real problem is that it’s all over much too quickly as the single player campaign is surprisingly short. That said however, it’s the multiplayer dimension which really gives you value for money. The GOTY edition also provides four extra multiplayer maps initially unavailable in the original edition – except for as a paid download. So if you’ve been waiting for an opportunity to pick up a copy of Modern Warfare at a decent price, this Shopto deal is definitely worth consideration.
Thanks to PartyBlast from Hotukdeals.
With the annual Call of Duty game on the way from Treyarch later this year, fans who missed the sixth iteration can now pick up Modern Warfare 2 from Game for just £19.98. Seven pounds shy from the next cheapest offer, this is the best deal around, so don't hesitate!
Modern Warfare 2 rocked the financial and critical markets in November of last year. It sold 4.7 million copies in just 24 hours, and earned an average rating of 94 at MetaCritic.
Modern Warfare 2 picks up several years after the events of the original. Task Force 141, an elite team of soldiers, are tasked with defeating Vladimir Makarov, a Russian terrorist hellbent on igniting World War 3. Your journey, told from multiple perspectives, takes you from the snow-capped mountains of Central Asia to the rundown favelas of Brazil.
Modern Warfare 2 gained a certain amount of infamy for a particular scene in the game. As Private Joseph Allen, recently recruited to Task Force 141, you infiltrate Makarov's inner-circle and join him as he and his team massacre civilians in a Russian airport. You can choose to join in the slaughter, or merely watch from the side-lines. The media publicly condemned Infinity Ward for creating this scene, despite the nature and subject matter of the level being largely similar to numerous scenes from films like Munich or Heat.
And so, with much fanfare and millions of Tweets, the new Call of Duty was announced a few days ago... And we still don’t know a lot about it.
The title – as you probably all know by now – is Call of Duty: Black Ops. But Black Ops when? We really don’t know.
Since Modern Warfare 2 arrived at the end of last year, speculation has been rife as to the nature of the next one. Will it follow on with some of the same characters and expand on the (highly convoluted) double crossing plot? Will it be a sideways spin-off, sending a minor MW2 character into a whole new world of hurt? Will it be a stand-alone retro move, in the spirit of Call of Duty: World At War? Will it be a Vietnam tale?
Frankly? We have no idea. But we can certainly speculate because hey, that’s what we do online, particularly when it comes to a game that’s part of a series that’s been both stunningly brilliant and utterly “meh”. Besides, perhaps the recent internal wrangling between Activision and Infinity Ward throws up more clues than we first suspected.Click to check out what Neil reckons Treyarch have in store for us...
Modern Warfare 2 takes places five years after the events of the original, allowing gamers to take control of a number of characters, primarily switching between SAS team members and those belonging to the US Rangers, as they fight against an array of enemies. Game are currently selling copies for £24.98, which is exactly £3 cheaper than Gamestation, who are the nearest competitors with a price of £27.98.
Whilst the single player campaign is a little on the short side, it more than makes up for this by placing gamers into an action packed adrenaline fuelled thrill ride of a shooter, backed up by outstanding in-game graphics. There were a number of occasions that I stopped what I was doing to appreciate the little things that make the environment special, like the impressive amount of detail that’s gone into the guns. Having said that it becomes immediately obvious that all this detail has been to out-do the action in the previous game and this has been done with style and finesse, whether you are being saved from sliding to your death on a glacier or dispatching enemies whilst zip lining down a cliff face.
As with the original, Modern Warfare 2’s crowning achievement is the multiplayer, which personally I believe is a vast improvement on the original. In fact, whilst I began logging onto Xbox live purely to play this with a group of friends, I quickly became addicted to the numerous online game types and found myself standing head and shoulder above my friends rankwise. The class customization has been improved with a number of extra options that allow you to have greater control over your character’s abilities.
The special ops mode is essentially a collection of co-op challenges, the essential word there being challenge. Initially, the difficulty of the missions lulls you into a false sense of security about their ease. However, as you progress through them it soon becomes apparent that the enemy AI are formidable opponents, who can’t be defeated by simple point and shoot tactics. This makes communication between you and your partner incredibly important and allows for a much richer co-op experience.
Whilst the single player campaign is a seamless continuation from the original with a nice combination of action and plot twists, the multiplayer is the thing that most gamers will become engrossed by and end up playing for the foreseeable future.
Thanks to adsidave at HUKD
Hot on the heels of another spate of US-based “violent videogames” drama, comes the announcement that Paddy Power, a retail and online bookmaker, is going to start taking bets on videogame competitions.
This is not a joke.
Now I am torn. On one hand I am thinking, “Cool, this is finally taking videogames seriously enough to suggest that there’s money in it.” However, the vast majority of my brain is screaming, “Oh no! What!”
Let me explain. I’ve always tried to stay on top of videogame news. Not just the latest releases or some release date being dropped (again) or what nasty publisher is introducing yet another hideous DRM measure, but also the scary news where frothing maniacs declare war on an entertainment medium they know nothing about. Oh, and truly interesting debates like this one.
So it was with a measure of resignation that I read the news that a new law recently passed in California is banning games for individuals under the age of 18. Yes, the Arnie state. You know, that hypocrite who appeared in all those violent movies back in the 80s which were then considered the cause of violence in children, when TV was The Evil One.
So now this law is moving on up to the U.S. Supreme Court where the decision will be made as to whether or not states can regulate the sale of videogames. Ultimately I think that if this is done cleverly it can have only positive effects. I know this makes me sound like a videogame bashing hypocrite but frankly I think that people who develop and play games like Rapeplay (the fuel that fanned the flames) should be held accountable.Has Tamsin turned her back on us? Find out by clicking here...
With all of the controversy surrounding Modern Warfare 2 (which seemed to just dominate every area of the media just after the game’s release last November) having ebbed away to practically nothing, the game has continued to steadily fall in price. You can now pick up a copy from The Game Collection (around 300 currently in stock) for £24.95 which beats the next best deal by just over £3.
The single player campaign of MW2 sees the player undertaking missions as part of a multinational coalition of commandos (with members of the SAS etc) and the American Army rangers. These alternating narrative threads not only allow the player to experience mission in a range of locations – from Russia's Tian Shan mountain range, to the Afghan desert and East coast of America – but also provide some contrasting approaches to combat. The ranger’s missions are usually characterized by large-scale-set-piece battles while throughout the commando missions more emphasis is placed upon stealth and infiltration tactics.
Like most Call of Duty titles, the single player campaign is a linear affair, but the superb visuals, relentless pace of the action and the game’s surprisingly high level of difficulty do distract you from the tightly choreographed nature of the missions. Like its predecessor, the single player game is quite short, and you’ll probably blast your way through in around six to eight hours, but that said, it’s an extremely intense and entertaining experience first time round. Like the original however, MW2 is all about the multiplayer, and this is where players are going to get the most enjoyment and longevity out of their purchase.
Thanks to tdk2bu from Hotukdeals.
With the release of Modern Warfare 2 , a fair amount of COD4 stock actually went up in price thanks to gamers wanting to check out the original retrospectively. It has, however, started slipping back down in recent weeks, although nothing has come along which tastes quite as sweet as this weekend price courtesy of Steam. The cheapest price for a hard copy of the GOTY edition is still nearly £15 over at 365Games and Amazon, but you can download the FPS for just under a tenner this weekend thanks to Valve.
It's actually fairly difficult to tell the original apart from its slightly shinier, somewhat louder sequel. The singe-player - essentially revolving around Soap MacTavish and his efforts to hunt down Russian Ultranationalist leader Imran Zakhaev - is as much of a rollercoaster ride of thrills and spills as its follow-up and actually lasts a little bit longer than that of MW2. It's actually really good fun to play the two back to back, as they kind of blend seamlessly into one another.
This is the multiplayer that captured the hearts and minds of trigger happy online gamers everywhere before MW2 arrived with all of its bells and whistles, and its heartening to note that the servers for this game are still excellently supported, and there's a thriving mod community too. One playthrough of COD4 hammers home a tenet that Activison and Infinity Ward clearly followed when making MW2 which is, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
A stunning game, and well worth a tenner.
Thanks to Cuddy at HUKD
Game Buzz is a weekly opinion column designed to take an irreverent look at one of the biggest news stories to break in the past week. Every Friday we’ll be bringing you another slice of reaction to topical gaming news, and inviting you to agree, disagree, shout assent, vent rage, scream and complain to you heart’s delight. This week, we return to the Infinity Ward controversy and ask how come EA are now the good guys.
There will probably be a movie version of the events that have unfolded over the past couple of months between Activision and Infinity Ward. It’s a classic tale after all: a big bad corporation led by a CEO (I personally envisage Kotick being played by either Christopher Lee in a fat suit, or by Will Ferrell/Danny McBride for laughs) who is alternately pantomime villain and corporate fat pie squeezes and grinds down its blockbuster producing development subsidiary.
There is talk of contractual re-negotiation, of bonuses not being paid, internal shakedowns and policies designed to bathe the workspace in a pervasive cloud of perpetual fear. The corporation fears that its award-winning development team is becoming too self-aware and so, to reassert the chain of command, it is decided that rebellion must be crushed with a pre-emptive strike – before insubordination can rear its ugly head, it’s time to cut off the head completely. But all is not well, and this only serves to further alienate the creatives from their financially minded, suited and booted progenitors.
A vid courtesy of PC Gamer that puts IW's losses into perspective
The above is pretty much the state of affairs as seen through the eyes of online media, and it’s certainly an attractive narrative. But just like the Wolf on hit Nineties Saturday television staple Gladiators, Kotick has styled himself as ‘the man we love to hate’ and it is a persona that we, both as an expectant media-savvy audience and, indeed, as gamers ourselves, have welcomed and accepted virtually without question.
With that in mind, much like a game of Chinese whispers or adolescent playground gossip, it’s virtually impossible to tell exactly what happened and we shall probably never know for certain. Both sides’ legal documents have more than a grain of truth in them, but are also couched in terms of barely concealed seething antagonism and no doubt exaggerated accusation.
You’ve woken up in a bad mood. Your partner has left you for a gnome. Your boss thinks you’re his bitch. Your parents think you’re a waste of space. Your cat threw up on your shoes and you got no sleep because of the mad DJ who lives next door.
You are in a very, very bad mood. You’re angry. What do you do? You can’t kill your boss/the ex/the cat/the DJ. No. You game. Want to release that rage. Be pissed off rather than pissed on? GAME.
Here are titles guaranteed to make you feel better, titles to avoid and titles to make you laugh. These giddy games will get the anger right where it should be – in a smoosh of brains, a roar of tyres and the explosion of destruction. Or a wicked giggle of delight.
Sandbox style gaming at its finest, this game is all about the violence and the release of pent-up rage. Get yourself onto the streets of Liberty City and become embroiled in the dark underbelly of the dark, erm, underbelly of America. Shoot, drive, squish, yell and soon you’ll be laughing manically along with your character.
Rage Release Factor: 9
Nothing says “I love you” quite like the sound of a cricket bat smacking into the head of a zombie. Pick your weapons, grab your team, open that beer and kill everything in sight. The bursts of adrenalin, the sudden scares, the shuffling horror of zombie doom. If you’re still grumpy after two hours of this, you may need to see a specialist.
Rage Release Factor: 9.5
Here you are, in German-occupied France, surrounded by Nazis and armed with bombs! Blow them up, shoot them, snipe them and save the world from a terrible threat. Let your imagination loose and enjoy sneaking up on people, causing mayhem and being as vindictive as possible. Explosions are cool.
Rage Release Factor: 8
Click here to see which other games Tamsin advocates using as virtual punchbags....