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Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
January 25, 2008 | Charlie Fletcher

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Air Support
When I got word that Aspyr Media had announced a Macintosh version of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, I was frankly surprised. Somehow I had thought that games as complex as Call of Duty would never see another Mac version now that Macintosh owners could run the Windows versions of the games in boot camp.

I can assuredly say that you will not be disappointed by CoD4 when it launches for the Mac. It has all of the power and presence of CoD and CoD2 , but with updated weapons, tactics, graphics -- and a fantastic new storyline that will knock your socks off.

Activision published CoD4 for Microsoft Windows XP, Xbox 360, Sony Playstation 3 and other platforms late last year. The game was developed by Infinity Ward, which also developed Call of Duty and Call of Duty 2.

Looking back from whence it's come, the original Call of Duty was released several years ago into an already active market for first person shooters set during World War II. Most of those games, including the sequels, Call of Duty 2 and Call of Duty 3, have taken their cues from history, very likely drawing on the works of the Irish author, Cornelius Ryan. Ryan wrote extensively about the battles of World War II, including the D-Day invasion, Operation Market Garden, and the Battle of the Bulge.

What was especially unique among WWII shooters in the first Call of Duty release was that the player didnít just play one character in the game but several characters in different parts of the Allied armies. So in one mission, you might be playing a British soldier, while in another, you might be playing an American. That one change made a lot of difference in how it felt to play the game. It took it away from being just an opportunity to fire guns and blow stuff up and brought it closer to a sort of participatory historical novel.

Another major change occurred with the release of CoD2: the elimination of health packs. Although, I donít think this was a new idea, it was a master stroke because it allowed the user to stay focused on the game instead of having to hunt around for boxes of bandages and such in a highly unrealistic manner. Of course, one could say that adding to the game the ability to sort of digest bullets was also rather unrealistic. Still, it did have the effect of keeping the focus on the mission, and I thought it was a big improvement.

So what can be said about CoD4? As it turns out, plenty! I purchased the Windows XP version of CoD4 in mid-December, and I have played the heck out of it for hour upon hour since then. I consider it to be one of the best first person shooters ever to be released.

If you played CoD or CoD2, you will find many of the same elements in this game: taking out the anti-aircraft battery, calling in air strikes, working with mechanized infantry, the frantic truck chase -- itís all there in CoD4. Nevertheless, you wonít feel like youíre playing just another sequel.


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