Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Review for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360PS3PC

The sequel to the 12-million selling FPS title.

Review Verdict Read Review
10Out of 10
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I felt like I needed a rest after I finished the single-player campaign in Modern Warfare 2. Such was the onslaught of in-your-face gameplay, explosive set-pieces and "OMG" plot twists that I was mentally exhausted. It was hard to process what I'd just played through. The campaign more or less follows the formula set out by Infinity Ward in its previous two games (CoD2 and CoD4), but it's one hell of a ride. Hopefully I'll recover soon, as I've got months of multiplayer and Spec Ops to play.

Modern Warfare 2 will receive criticism for all of the things I said above. At times the campaign is so intense, so intent on throwing things at you, that it's hard to take it all in. The plot will leave some wondering what's going on as it switches from soldier to soldier, moving all over the world and beyond through the course of a six-hour experience. Some of the story will have players wondering if certain scenes were necessary and if certain moments really make sense in the grand scheme of the story that spans CoD4 and Modern Warfare 2. You'll also still find yourself battling against wave after wave of enemies, and some gamers will no doubt feel that this scripted gameplay is a bit old-fashioned now.

These things aren't going to convince CoD haters that this is the kind of game they want to be playing, but if you've been taken in by this formula in the past, Modern Warfare 2's campaign delivers the goods and then some. Even talking about one brilliant moment will potentially spoil one of the best parts of the experience, so let's just say that you should expect plenty of variety in gameplay, mission types and environments. There's absolutely a feeling that this is a direct follow-on from CoD4, but that's no bad thing when that is quite rightly regarded by many as one of the best shooters of all time.

Six hours (add a few more if you play on one of the harder difficulty settings) might not sound like long enough for the campaign in the biggest game of the year, but it's unlikely you'll feel short changed. There's really very little in the way of filler, with Infinity Ward putting together a superbly paced experience that stumbles so irregularly that the one sticky point I encountered, towards the end of the game, came rather out of the blue. A siege on a large house sees you pinned down as you fend off what seems like hundreds of enemy soldiers, and this is the only point in the entire game that I felt things weren't bang on in terms of difficulty.

The level variety is great

The level variety is great

Anyone who's played a CoD will be familiar with the basic controls. On consoles the left trigger will aim down your gun's sight, snapping your aim to the closest enemy - something PC gamers with their mice needn't worry about. The shoulder buttons throw out grenades, eliminating the need to manually switch to them from an inventory, while the d-pad activates special weapons or night vision goggles (when available). Thrown grenades show up on the screen as easy-to-identify icons, and you can chuck them back if you're quick enough. Finally your knife or other melee weapon can be instantly used at the click of the right stick.

Infinity Ward has introduced a few fresh ideas, including a handful of great new weapons and pick-ups (the riot shield comes in very handy at times), but it hasn't fiddled too much with what works. The biggest new addition to the game isn't actually in the campaign at all: Spec Ops is a brand new single-player or two-player cooperative mode that presents you with more than 20 short missions, each with set objectives that need to be accomplished as fast as possible. Many of these take place in environments lifted from the campaign, but when played with the right person (and thankfully there's two-player split-screen in the console games as well as online), these can be even more fun.

Cooperative play was previously absent from the Modern Warfare experience, quite notably so since other genre heavyweights have implemented it so well, but Spec Ops should satisfy your co-op hunger. The missions on offer have been designed expertly with co-op in mind throughout, making them far more enjoyable than a bolted-on campaign mode would have been. You really need to work with your partner to achieve success, and when you do the sense of achievement is incredible. It's probably easiest to describe these levels as more elaborate scenarios that follow the same instant action formula as the bonus plane mission unlocked at the end of CoD4, although many of those included here last upwards of 20 minutes. Even if you only get six hours from the main campaign, you'll get that and more from Spec Ops.

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Highest Rated Comment

altaranga's Avatar


Hahaha, this is one of the funniest threads ever. Where did all the love go? I disappear for a day and look what happens.

There are so many childish posts on here I cannot even try to reply to them all. I will point out a few of the ones that seem particularly silly, but before I do...

Tom, good review. I haven't finished the game yet and so I cannot comment on the 10/10 score, but I liked the review none the less (but not nearly as much as I am liking the game).

@Mr_Ninjutsu: I respect your opinions about most things gaming but I think this time you have shot your guns a bit early. You said "I have yet to play it" and "I think i can [have an opinion] seeing as i was told pretty much everything i needed to hear from my friends at uni". What you have admitted therefore is that it is not your opinion but the opinion of others. I would say to you save your opinion until you have at least played the game. It is the same reason I have not had an opinion about UC2 (about which I am deeply jealous).

@Lee: Was that really necessary? You knew it would antagonise.

@vrc: You call the review mediocre but you don't say why. That's probably why you had the backlash. And btw, when you start calling people "an immature, petty idiot" you are already stooping to their level.

@karlius: I should probably say something but your Christopher Reeve photo nearly killed me.

And in general, enough with the swearing already.
Posted 20:23 on 11 November 2009

User Comments

bjon's Avatar


CoDMW2 is more of an arcade game. No realism what so ever. The knife throwing is just silly, who can throw i knife 200 meters and kill a guy with body armor^^ When I think of CoDMW2, I think of a small child infront of his computer "nerd-raging". Try out Battlefield Bad Company 2, much more realistic. For example the bulletdrop effect. I don't see that in CoDMW2.
Posted 12:49 on 28 October 2010
xBF1M_KRONiiKx's Avatar


this games deserves max a 7
Posted 05:44 on 08 August 2010
isamanta3's Avatar


free down load option
Posted 07:58 on 07 August 2010
isamanta3's Avatar


require free download
Posted 07:56 on 07 August 2010
UltraMaggy's Avatar


Are you insane. first of all I´m against giving a game the highest score since it can always be better but this can be WAAAY better.

well 0,5 points worth atleast is the ability to open doors. 4 points worth is when you have more space to move than in a 2d platform game. Its a small, tiny little trail all through the game, extremely small maps in multiplayer for todays standard. The porting from xbox or ps3 whichever is was originally made for was almost as bad as it can get. Atleast you werent asked to press "A" or "x" like in some ported games.The single-player was even more boring, it was so scripted so that takes away 3 points. When you replay it on hardest after finishin it in normal in a few hours you know exactly where and what everything was gonna come, no randomeness what so ever. No surprises, just like rewatching a movie you just saw.

Horrible game for that money. I feel robbed.
absolutely max 10 Euro I think you shold pay for this since atleast half of the coop-maps are fun even thought theyre retardedly simple on pc with a mouse for aiming.
Is this cost like 7 Euro I would give it an 8/10 but for 60Euro(!!!) its getting a 2,5/10
Posted 01:28 on 13 March 2010
VideoGameMan636's Avatar

VideoGameMan636@ zygo


1. You shouldn't do that, as their opinion could differ vastly from yours.

2. What would the price drop be, maybe a few dollars?

3. I think you shouldn't focus so much on the scores and more on the general opinion of the game- good, bad, or medicore. In my mind, these people liked the game only slightly more if they gave it a 10 than if they gave it a 9, and etc etc.
Posted 06:56 on 02 January 2010
zygo's Avatar


I care

I read reviews, so I can buy a game that I will not feel I wasted my money on. When some idiot reviews a game and gives it a perfect review when the game clearly doesn’t deserve it, is total BS. If I new how bad this game was, say a 7. I would have waited until the game had dropped in price.
Posted 02:24 on 22 December 2009
VideoGameMan636's Avatar

VideoGameMan636@ zygo


Who cares if it should be 7, 8, 9, or 10?

Why does he suddenly have to have your opinion?

This is directed not just at you, but for people saying similar things.

7, 9, and 10 all mean "This game is cool and should be bought!" so who cares about the specifics?

Again, it's their opinion. Lighten up guys.
Posted 02:26 on 26 November 2009
zygo's Avatar


WOW a 10 are you serious. How much did IW pay you. The single player is way too short and has a bad story line. Multiplayer matchmaking system is junk, P2P is terrible and you can only play from a limited list of game types. The lag is so bad in this game. At best this game should be a 7. You owe me 60 dollars Tom.
Posted 22:54 on 25 November 2009
thompo555's Avatar

thompo555@ RoryGreen

Look at the last statement again and think hard about it. I can already think of a list longer that the diferences in MW and MW2
Posted 21:11 on 18 November 2009
RoryGreen's Avatar

RoryGreen@ Mr_Ninjutsu

@Mr_Ninjutsu - They aren't exactly going to completely change the game for a sequel are they?
I know, considering Call of Duty 4 was such a huge success, lets make Modern Warfare 2 a fantasy MMO - What did you honestly expect them to do for a sequel?

The game has many new things compared to the old one. 2 player co-op mode, most of the guns/equipment is different, different HUD which makes for a better feel, larger levels, different multiplayer system with way more unlocks and a completely different campaign. How is this "more of the same"?

Uncharted 2 hasn't exactly changed from the first has it?
Posted 20:17 on 18 November 2009
Ghost_Dog's Avatar

Ghost_Dog@ guyderman

I've just made a thread for this video. Sorry guyderman.

But I think that it is so funny it deserves to have its own thread.
Posted 14:15 on 16 November 2009
Bloodstorm's Avatar


Attention seeking little tw@t comes to mind.

I hate youtube so much for these videos.
Posted 14:09 on 16 November 2009
dav2612's Avatar


Respect to the young lunatic, I'd not be able to do 17 hours straight on a game I didn't like.
Posted 13:46 on 16 November 2009
El-Dev's Avatar

El-Dev@ guyderman

What the f*ck?!?!

He punches like a girl.
Posted 13:34 on 16 November 2009

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Out of 10
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
  • Co-op mode is superb
  • Brilliant campaign
  • Multiplayer will eat your time
  • It's essentially more of the same
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 10/11/2009
Platforms: Xbox 360 , PS3 , PC
Developer: Infinity Ward
Publisher: Activision
Genre: First Person Shooter
Rating: BBFC 18
Site Rank: 277 7
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