Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II Xbox Series X Review

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II lacks the emotion the first MWII left us with, but it is still a good war FPS.

By Rayan, Posted 07 Nov 2022

Since its introduction, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare continues to be one of the most financially successful franchises in the world, and once again, the game reintroduces cutting-edge weaponry and, of course, much to the series fans' delight; a storyline that continues the saga of Task Force 141 starring John Price, Ghost, and Soap. Those who pre-ordered the game were given early access to the game's campaign before it was released, and three years later, the remake came with the work of a new graphics engine and provided the series a much-needed boost.

A rejuvenated Infinity Ward gave the series a fresh start by placing its hopes on a remake to bring us back to the delivery that, after eleven years, was utterly unparalleled. However, the flip side is that the new installment must pass a very difficult test to demonstrate that it is equally deserving of its enormous heritage. So, the question comes whether Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II fully subsumes the enlarged scope while addressing all of the criticisms leveled at its predecessor. Let's find out.


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Following its heritage, the core of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II follows pretty much the same direction. A major plan that threatens the whole globe, and the only way to stop it from occurring, is for a highly trained team of Ops to stop it. Unlike the recent entries, this remake gets right to the action immediately by introducing the characters that lit up this franchise and doesn't let up very much until the end.

There is a sense of nostalgia in the air when that original lineup takes center stage with John Price, Ghost, and Soap. Particularly Ghost is given a lot more space on stage and is fleshed out significantly. Many players will be surprised to see references to his alias, the specters from Call of Duty: Ghosts, and Infinity Ward's initial effort to move on from Modern Warfare. Having the most recognizable characters in the franchise back together is a wonderful touch, and they deliver a fantastic campaign beyond my expectations.

Campaign mode is sometimes overlooked by Call of Duty aficionados. Unfortunately, there is no apparent progression across the scattered assignments. This causes the plot to jumble and the missions to appear implausible or even silly. It was tough out there, but overall, it was entertaining, challenging, and fascinating. This elite force is well-stocked with cutting-edge equipment and fierce warriors. As a result, they are unafraid of any challenge and willing to take on any task.


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However, dedicated players will be rewarded with an unforgettable adventure. In addition to having some of the most outstanding and most detailed visuals I've ever seen, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II also has some stunningly theatrical, intense scenarios. Furthermore, the performance is excellent, and the sound effects are pretty remarkable. Overall, it's much superior to my wildest expectations.

From a story perspective, we stick with a very standard international thriller: rogue Major Hassan Zyani seeks vengeance against the United States for the murder of his general. So, it's equipped with missiles we must locate before they stop being launched. Even if the story doesn't strive for literary greatness, it will have a mash-up of characters. Consequently, we'll utilize every pretext we can find as a means to a more extensive world tour.

The already-exceptional standard established by the 2019 episode is raised even further with the addition of technically superior and lifelike sequences. The developers' attention to detail in making this section lively and packed with nuances is also impressive. It is fun exploring the campaign for around six and seven hours to reach the conclusion of it. This is the standard length of time for the Call of Duty single-player experience. Players from that generation will appreciate a wonderful surprise if they stick around for the final credits.


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There are a total of seventeen missions available, and they'll take you to all sorts of interesting places throughout the world. These chapters add up to a first-person shooter experience on par with the highest standards, a genre in which the Call of Duty franchise excels. Every mission has a wide range of variations in its own way, and the missions themselves can be more surprising than the campaign's plot. Unlike its predecessors, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II makes a concerted effort to inject a sense of playfulness and theatricality into its shooting sequences.

In addition, almost every list of Call of Duty includes the requisite sniper mission, an operation using night vision gadgets, or the assault of a base from which we may seek air backup. Finally, there's also a tactical assignment in which you guide your team to their target and give them specific instructions for killing them. These are intriguing concepts, and it is maybe a bit of a pity that the game did not bring them into the discourse in a more substantial manner.

You will find anything from handguns to machine guns, rifles to grenades and rockets, and everything in between in the game's extensive artillery. Since it is impossible to attain mastery of all the weapons, particularly those with a diverse variety, the campaign mode chapters offer a great way to adapt to them if you're planning to hoop onto the multiplayer from here.


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We're supposed to be amused throughout the narrative, and that's exactly what we get. There are covert objectives, rescue tasks, and outright battle scenes. The fact that you don't have to constantly fire shots at enemies in order to complete a task is a testament to the breadth of options that Infinity Ward included in this version. All of these felt like a preparation for the multiplayer, which obliviously is the main object of the game.

Speaking of Multiplayer, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II won't seem foreign since the gameplay is mostly unchanged, especially if you're familiar with the series. You'll discover that the gameplay is practically exactly the same, including different activities. The menu system, making a new class, and equipping yourself with a personalized arsenal are all handled in the same way, with the exception of some minimal mechanics. The new features are diving and swimming, which have been included in the previous Call of Duty games, and they both allow players other ways to navigate the terrain.

The multiplayer consists of Team Deathmatch, Free-For-All, Domination, Search And Destroy, Headquarters, Kill Confirmed, Hardpoint, Prisoner Rescue, and Knock Out modes. These include decent contextual information and provide a variety of routes as well as some elevation changes. On the redesigned side, we find a few new additions to the game modes, including KO, Prisoner Rescue, and a brand-new kind of massive warfare called Invasion. In this mode, the participants are split into two teams, each consisting of 32 people, and non-player characters (NPCs) are included in both groups. With the addition of vehicular options, these games are set to provide more heated battles.


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The raw stats for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II is impressive. There are 40 primary weapons across 7 classes, 25 specialists, 11 traditional maps of varying sizes, and 5 bigger maps for Ground War and Invasion mode. The games are often quicker-paced than in years past, but our fundamental strategies have not changed. Some may find it to be ideal, while others will find it to be too traditional. But the ability to navigate these maps is a major improvement. You can use any structure as a mounting surface, dangling down cliffs and other peaks to fire your pistol.

Even if the multiplayer design has a lot going for it, not everything is rosy. The lack of a statistics panel and the confusing layout of the menus are two major complaints. Even the method of handling progress may well be debated. Instead of leveling up specific weapons, players will instead advance through lines of collections of weapons having similar traits, gaining access to additional weapons within the same set as they go.

Different factions of Call of Duty gamers have already formed in response to this map. Spawn cycles never seem to be getting off to a good start and always need fine-tuning since it is never fun to be revived into a world filled with rivals shooting for your head. Being revived beyond enemy lines makes little sense, especially if you already have two immovable objectives.


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The variety of game types is excellent, spanning from the traditional Deathmatch (either one team vs. another or a free-for-all) to the cutting-edge 'Rescue Hostages' and 'Knockout,' two goal variants with low-reward structures made for the professional scene. The fan-favorite Terrestrial War mode has also been brought back, and it now supports two groups of up to 24 gamers each on quite expansive areas.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II now allows players to use armored vehicles and other types of methods of transportation. There is also an extra moshpit mode with a third-person viewpoint, which is more of a gimmick than a substantial addition to the game. Although it offers a delightful twist on the central theme, the mode was not developed with the level of attention required for the Call of Duty community to play it for extended periods and explore it in more detail.

Besides the multiplayer, there is a Spec Ops mode that brings players together in a fun way. This mode is often overlooked, but this year has to offer in that regard. It is a collection of three big co-op missions for two players. Even though their goals are pretty simple, it's fun to break the monotony of the multiplayer.


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Capturing buildings rather than attempting to defend them throws off the flow of an otherwise typical wave style. This is one of three missions that have somewhat different objectives. Once you have completed each task with three stars, there is very little reason to go back, but it is a pleasant change of pace from the tumultuous atmosphere of intense multiplayer.

Finally, among the next-gen games I've played, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II has the most outstanding visuals. The graphics are simply fantastic. You'll find a metropolis teeming with life, a wide range of landscapes to explore, and the typical day and nighttime combat. Cutscenes are almost as lifelike as real life when it comes to facial expressions, texturing, backgrounds, and particularly weather effects.

The fantastic visuals are most apparent in several sequences, especially the character and environment details. I can't stress enough how impressive everything looks; lighting is a huge part of it. This time, a more substantial amount of devastation was performed, and pieces of structures would collapse in a variety of different maps. Infinity Ward clearly has a firm grasp on creating engaging environments and a high bar for visual polish.



 

There are a lot of new features and improvements in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II, but the gameplay is mostly unchanged from the first Modern Warfare game. Its campaign mode will draw much criticism, while it's obvious that the single-player mode hasn't been a top focus. Overall, it's not too dissimilar from its 2019 remade predecessor, but this time around, expectations meant that there wasn't much room for innovation or surprise.

Fortunately, the multiplayer is fun despite being sorely missing in certain crucial aspects and has been updated enough to please the diehard fans. The first Modern Warfare II left us with an emotion that its sequel lacks, but it is still a good war FPS, a genre that sees fewer and lesser masterclasses.
 

Azfar Rayan (@AzfarRayan)
Editor, NoobFeed

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General Information

Platform(s): PC, PS5, XBSX, PS4, Xbox One
Publisher(s): Activision
Developer(s): Infinity Ward, Demonware, Toys for Bob, Treyarch
Genres: First-Person Shooter
Themes: Action, Shooter, Multiplayer
Release Date: 2022-10-27

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