Image via Activision

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3’s Loadout UI is Still a Dreadful Mess

The loadout menus in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 still leave something to be desired.

Did you think the menus in Modern Warfare 2 were bad? If so, you aren’t alone. They were clunky, awkward, laggy, and a bunch of other negative descriptors I won’t list. Indeed, Modern Warfare 3 had a chance to overhaul the UI. It had the chance to fix those issues ahead of the trilogy’s last mission. We all hoped it would be the case. And while there’s a tiny (tiny) chance things can change, the loadout menu UI still doesn’t look to meet the mark.

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MW3’s Loadout UI Still Doesn’t Meet the Mark

From what I saw during the October 5 CoD NEXT presentation, Modern Warfare 3 has done nothing to address the menu quality concerns raised last year against Modern Warfare 2. Everything is still large buttons, horizontal selections, and too many sub-menus to count. Fixing the clunky UI might not have any direct impact on the moment-to-moment gameplay. However, it does make all the time you spend in lobbies and loadouts a chore.

A bad UI doesn’t take away from the hard work that’s gone into the game, mind. Though, I do wonder if the movement from “perks” to “gear” was necessary in the context of the menus. Each gear slot — gloves, chest, and boots — accomplishes the same basic function as the perk system from previous Call of Duty games. The Ninja perk and its silencing of footsteps is now the function of a specific pair of shoes. Sleight of Hand is now based on a pair of gloves.

These changes are, as far as I can tell, purely cosmetic. Sleight of Hand still lets you reload quickly. Changing not only the nomenclature of the perk system but also the symbols only serves to confuse and add inconsistency to a system that’s worked for decades. Add in the frankly terrible menu system, and the whole situation feels… well, not ideal.

Menus in Call of Duty have, of course, been unoptimized for years, but that doesn’t mean they have to stay that way. I don’t see this particular UI changing with an update in the next year. I’m sure there are plenty of higher-priority updates in the pipeline, but it’s frustrating all the same. Maybe I’m wrong. I hope I’m wrong. Until we find out, stay tuned for more as we get closer to the release of MW3 on November 10 for PC, PlayStation, and Xbox platforms.


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John Schutt
John Schutt has been playing games for almost 25 years, starting with Super Mario 64 and progressing to every genre under the sun. He spent almost 4 years writing for strategy and satire site TopTierTactics under the moniker Xiant, and somehow managed to find time to get an MFA in Creative Writing in between all the gaming. His specialty is action games, but his first love will always be the RPG. Oh, and his avatar is, was, and will always be a squirrel, a trend he's carried as long as he's had a Steam account, and for some time before that.