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News Opinions 28 October 2022, 14:46

Modern Warfare 2 Campaign is Like a Hamburger (Which is Good)

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 has launched – for now just as single-player campaign, which is the same as any campaign in Call of Duty. Silly and illogical, but at the end of the day we like it.

The Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 campaign is now out – at least for those who don't adhere to the famous slogan, "Remember, no preorders." It is again quite a short, but wild ride that takes us on a tour around the world to track down some form of international evil. You can read more and more about the technicalities in the review written by Matthias. In this text, however, I wanted to focus on two, specific things. Food and emotions.

We've seen it all, but apparently – judging by the sales of each subsequent CoD – it doesn't bother us at all. We apparently enjoy grinding the same stories, just shown in better graphics (which, surprisingly, this time come without ray tracing). I myself fall forCoD on a regular basis and usually enjoy it the same as last year. And a year before. And two years before...

Call of Duty: The Hamburger

Because you see, the single player experience in Call of Duty is just like a hamburger, and we – even if we prefer more exquisite food – sometimes like to eat something simple and fatty, even though we know it won't surprise us with anything. This is the campaign of the new Modern Warfare 2 – I have digested it and in a week's time, I will not remember pretty much anything about it. Do I regret it? Not in the least, because the only thing I will remember is that it tasted good.

The world is a rather sad place in Call of Duty, every year terrorized by a different psycho. Of course, this terrorist doesn't consider himself a terrorist at all – he feels deeply misunderstood, and he will show it to everyone by blowing up nukes. In addition, he manages to gather an army powerful enough to conquer Russia in three days, so in general, he has to be neutralized.

We are sort of happy, because it's an opportunity to visit several strange places on different continents, spread some badlam in Amsterdam (the city is truly beautiful), destroy an oil rig, cross the 'Trump wall' and go a long way in decimating a Mexican cartel. Of course, there are also terrorists from the Middle East, traitors on our own side, and it all starts in the best way possible – hitting the Ruskies with a rocket. I.e. – nothing we wouldn't expect.

Once again, to restore balance, Task Force 141 enters the fray in the form of Captain Price, Soap, Gas and Ghost. The well-liked heroine of CoDMW1, Farah also appears, and there are new characters, such as Alejandro Vargas, an spec-op from Mexican Special Forces. Together we stand against terrorists, cartels and traitors – all in order to save the world. We watch well-made cutscenes again, sneak behind enemy lines, plant bombs, cut throats, attack convoys, etc., etc. Everything we know and like; nothing we wouldn't expect.

The plot is – again – full of inaccuracies, logical holes and nightmarish nonsense, but this doesn't prevent anyone from enjoying the destruction. In terms of depth, the story is shallower than the Sea of Azov, but then no one expects philosophical debates here – it's a game that first of all supposed to give you targets to shoot at. Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, like the entire series, uses the simplest emotions, and the most hackneyed clichés. If some is bad, we don't need to know why – they're bad, period. And the only motivation a baddie needs are, of course, money and power.

Call of Duty: Modern Philosopher

If you think about it, there is no underlying message here – Call of Duty shows a war, but it's a war that doesn't exist in the real world – it's a "safe" war not only because it's virtual, but also because the creators make sure that you move within predictable categories and themes, ones that action movies have gotten us used to. So, there's a lot of trite, "safe" evil here, and even more comradery, courage and heroism, sacrifice and duty.

As always, there's also the disconcerting matter of playing a game like within the context of ongoing military conflicts; the normalization and romantization of war. But I think everyone needs to for their own opinion about this particular issue. Meanwhile, this is a story in which strong men and women take up arms and explain to people on the street that they're not afraid of anyone – no drug dealers, no nationalists, no terrorists. Everything is safe and predictable here, it's the most basic kind of drama; good guys win, bad guys bite the dust. And even if one of our comrades dies, the team backs off, regroups, and then flexes muscles again, storms the enemy's stronghold to allow Captain Price to save the day again.

After all, CoD was like this from the very beginning – this push for the inevitable triumph of good over evil is the sole DNA of the game, clearly visible in its core mechanics: many times, the opponents only stop spawning when we pass a scripted checkpoint. Even if we die trying ten times over, even if we see a dozen quotes about sacrifice, war, and heroism, we will eventually be able to finish the level. Terrorists will be reduced to rows of plastic bags. Plans to conquer "the free world" will be thwarted. Civilians will be saved. And Captain Price will light up a cigar, proudly standing in front of some big explosion.

Matthias Pawlikowski

Matthias Pawlikowski

A literary reviewer and critic in the past, he has published works on literature, culture and theater in a number of humanistic journals and portals. Somewhere along the way he was involved in copywriting, producing and translating descriptions for Mattel toys. He studied literary criticism and literature. A journalist for since the end of 2016, he first worked in the guides division and later managed it, eventually becoming the managing editor of An enjoyer of old games, city-builders and RPGs, including Japanese ones. He spends a huge amount of money on PC components. Outside of work and gaming, he plays tennis and does occasional charity work.


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