The release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 marks a pivotal point in entertainment history. Some feel, as I do, that this game is undeserving of the attention it got and the enormous amount of sales and revenue generated. My own reasoning for this is that the game itself is flawed. Not that Infinity Ward is bad at what they or anything (quite the opposite), but they just can’t top what seems to be their best game yet, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
So, I decided to go back and replay Modern Warfare, for only the second time. Granted, it didn’t pack the same awe-filled punch it did when I first played through, however I still greatly enjoyed the experience more than I thought I would. So I present an unconventional retrospective that also partially functions as a review. It essentially cuts down to how the game made me feel and how i approached it.
I bring my scope up to my right eye. I hold my breath and in my head I count “One, two, three, one, two, three“. A burly man, mid-thirties, sprints from behind a concrete wall. In his hands he is carrying an AK-74, a 5.45 caliber assault rifle. He shouts. I fire, but the shot goes wild and the bullet hits an abandoned car. I curse and slide the Dragunov clip out. I berate myself in my head; why hadn’t I reloaded before?
I pull a fresh, heavy clip from my ammunition pouch and pop it into the clip slot. The sound it makes is calming; the sound of oiled metal clicking together, creating a synergistic relationship of death. I swing the gun around so that my eye once again peers down the scope. The man, now screaming at his comrades in Russian, is crouched behind the shoddy Eastern-European generi-brand car. I consider my options. Do I pop him in the head, make it quick? Or do I put a 7.62x54mm round into his calf, and make him wish he’d picked a better hiding spot? I decide on the latter. My finger squeezes the trigger, not too much, not too little. The gun roars, kicks. I hold it steady.
The man keels over, his lower right leg now useless. I can see I’ve shattered his tibia; the bullet went straight through. His gun is now laying a few feet away from him. I can see, even at this distance, the fear in his eyes. I stow the Dragunov away and un-holster my Heckler & Koch USP .45 ACP Tactical. My teammates systematically end the lives of the Russian mans comrades, a single bullet into the soft tissue of the brain. I stride over to the man I’d shot; he’s bleeding bad now. He babbles away in Russian: I can’t understand a word of it. I line the pistol up with his head as he agonizingly crawls for his assault rifle, inches away. I let him grab it, let him feel the warm handle of the gun one last time before I fire my gun point blank into his other leg.
He cringes and whips around, gun unsteady, vision already darkening. I bring the gun mere inches away from his face. He has no time to fire, no time to think. No time to wonder “Why?”. I’d ask myself the same question, but I’m just doing my job. I end his life. One .45 caliber ACP round to the soft tissue of the brain. I move forward, pull out my rifle, and repeat the process. One, two, three, one, two, three.