With the launch of 2019’s Call of Duty installation, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, there came a lot of hope and interest to the franchise. Over the last few years Call of Duty has turned back the clock on it’s franchise with the installation of Call of Duty: WW2 and the remastering of COD4 paired with the launch of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare in 2016.
In 2019, the yearly release of Call of Duty is no different as we see a reboot of sorts to the COD4 release, Modern Warfare. This iteration comes with some nostalgia as we see the return of classic franchise characters such as Captain Price who looks and sounds a little different, but with good reason. For most, the campaign and overall story has been a major success with gamers who have had the chance to play it. However, when we shift to the multiplayer portion of Modern Warfare, we begin to see some dissatisfaction among gamers who have played the base multiplayer from October 2019. The major complaints surround the map design and sizes that can evidently be found on maps such as Aniyah Palace and Azhir Cave. With the complaints of poor quality maps in the multiplayer mode, Infinity Ward and Activision were quick to spring to action with the release of Shoot House and the additional maps that accompanied the launch of Season 1. With the start of Season 1 we saw the addition of the classic Modern Warfare map, Crash, come to the 2019 vision of the 2007 classic. While Crash was well welcomed in the early days of being added to the game, many people became vocal of how it didn’t add enough to the game in lieu of the original 10 maps which are to be considered mediocre at best.
Not too long after Crash was released came the fan favorite maps of Shipment and Vacant right before the 2019 holiday season. These maps were widely welcomed by the Call of Duty community but not without there fair share of complaints.
Many users have complained about the spawn locations and in turn, the flow of how game modes play on Shipment. Infinity Ward addressed these by randomizing and correcting the spawn locations for modes such as TDM and Kill Confirmed but other modes such as Domination still face their fare share of spawn camping and choke points based on flags held and spawn locations. Additional complaints were raised about Vacant which is considered a larger map in comparison to Shipment and Shoot House. Vacant includes and entire outside area with shipping containers that rarely sees any action unless you are playing a mode such as Headquarters or Hardpoint which leads you to the containers or out-buildings for objectives. Many players indicated that the map needs a re-work or removal of the outdoor area for it to be enjoyable in the 2019 Call of Duty landscape.
Now you may be asking yourselves, “Why does any of this matter? We know all of this already.” and you would be right to indicate that but where my concern lies, is with the launch of Season 2 upon us, we still face issues with the game and the approach that Infinity Ward is taking. Whether this approach is coming down from the powers above at Activision, there are still issues that need to be discussed. Season 2 is set to bring back yet another Modern Warfare series classic with the addition of Rust. For those who are not familiar with the map, it’s another tight map with a square form-factor that plays just as chaotic as Shipment does. There is a difference though as Rust adds an element of vertical combat as players can climb the oil rig in the middle of the map to see players down below or seek out enemy players who have snaked themselves away in the oil rig.
Why is this an issue? Well, with the addition of this map comes the concern over spawn locations and the toxic play that will come with players who decide to take advantage of this fact. Not to mention that the rotation of maps will greatly increase in the 24/7 playlist slot which seems to stir a big outcry from players online whenever Shoot House or Shipment have been removed to make way for a new map in the 24/7 playlist (yes, i’m looking right at you 24/7 Crash and 24/7 Shipment & Vacant).
While Season 2 is also including a fresh lineup of original maps for both the standard modes and ground war, the focus is clearly still set on fan servicing players who want the classics to return. While that in itself isn’t a bad idea, the problems that follow this focus is an issue.
We will continue to see players who are not happy with the layout of the classic maps, the flow of game play, and the playlist changes that come on a weekly basis. While I welcome the inclusion of these maps to the game, I would also thoroughly enjoy building new maps that will become the fan favorites of the future. We can already assume that this will not be the last Call of Duty game where we see Shoot House as that is a fine example of a new map that has gone over huge with the player base. Is it a game changer? No, but it is a proven formula that players like, three lanes in a standard map layout.
One thing that the Call of Duty franchise has showcased throughout the various installations over the last 10 years is that more is less. The shift from present-day warfare to space warfare was highly criticized and it saw me personally take a hiatus from a few titles due to the space jumping and weaponry that was laid out for players in those titles. The fact that the game has come back to earth, literally, is a huge step in the franchise and I for one, hope that the success of Modern Warfare (2019) continues in the future. The Black Ops franchise is one example of the above as we are poised to see yet another installation in that franchise within the next year or so.
What do you think of the decision to bring back old maps from the Call of Duty franchise? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page!