Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Articles RSS Feed | Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network How Does Infinite Warfare Differ From the Modern Warfare Series? Thu, 27 Oct 2016 06:00:01 -0400 Timothy J. Ralston (TehMadCatter)

Back in 2007, Infinity Ward had released a groundbreaking game, titled Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, a sequel to the previous entry released in 2006, Call of Duty 3. Modern Warfare was the true start of multiplayer first-person shooters, along with an incredible campaign, fantastic graphics for the time, and a class system that made you want to try every single weapon.

Jumping to 2016, with the release of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, a lot of old fans of the Call of Duty series were disappointed with the release trailer of the game, some saying that the series is going too far with the futuristic aspect the game was given back with Black Ops 2.

While the open beta did show a little tease of the multiplayer (something I spent the whole second weekend on), it just didn’t have the Warfare feel to it, and almost felt like another version of Titanfall, Halo or Destiny, making it seem like it’s a new game as a whole.

Some people like this feeling, while others don’t, and miss the classic feeling of the Modern Warfare series. I, for one, completely miss the original style of Modern Warfare (though, if you purchase the "Digital Deluxe", you get the remastered Modern Warfare and season pass), and would like to see the series take a different path in the upcoming games.

To bring back Price, the real main protagonist of the Modern Warfare series, for one final fight in a modernized new released game would be incredible, and possibly the most heartbreaking since chances are, they would end up killing Price in the end. Sadly, as expected, the series seems to just go for the future.

The weapon system had also changed drastically, first starting out with a perfect inventory of weapons to choose from in the Modern Warfare series, all based on actual guns. Black Ops did the same thing, but ended up creating possible futuristic weaponry that we could see on the battlefield in the next ten to twenty years.

But as more games were released, the weapons became more and more nonsensical, and just started to look really unnatural and really ridiculous in a way. Plus, as the games furthered on, the perks became more and more unnecessary, as they really don’t do that much, compared to how great the perk system was in Modern Warfare 2.

Though, to say Infinite Warfare could be a bad game, is not up to us yet since the full game has not been released just yet, but expectations for the game aren’t as high as they were before. Fans of the old Call of Duty series are even switching over to the newly released Battlefield 1, while some are planning on getting the game just for the remastered Modern Warfare.

Safe to say, the open beta certainly opened my eyes -- after I swore off the series since Black Ops 3 -- to experience this game just for the multiplayer. Which, I hate to say is since it is somewhat addicting. Plus, Kit Harington as the main villain for Infinite Warfare is something I can't wait to see.

If you liked this article, check out GameSkinny for more information on everything gaming!

Why Boredom in Games is a Good Thing Fri, 30 Jan 2015 19:33:06 -0500 Pierre Fouquet

You are playing an open-world RPG like Skyrim or Dragon Age: Inquisition, or an MMORPG, or a simulation game like Euro Truck Simulator 2 or Elite: Dangerous, you suddenly find yourself getting bored while playing. This isn't something wrong with the game. Oh contraire, it's something very right. Boredom in games is good, and let's talk about why.

Is this you at any point while playing a game?

But I'm Bored!

Without boredom, the human brain would not strive to find something interesting.

At its most basic, boredom is the starting block of creativity. Without boredom, the human brain would not strive to find something interesting. On the flip side, if your brain has a constant stimulus, it will very quickly get bored with this too. Call of Duty, and many games of its genre, often suffer from this, just like with high-octane action films. As you are constantly being bombarded with big bombastic explosions, and thrilling set pieces, I'm sure you find yourself getting numb to this and thus getting bored.

Yet, in an MMORPG, say World of Warcraft. In this, you may get bored when the next 10 tasks are fetch quests, and the preceding 30 were also, this can easily get very boring. But then out of nowhere a dragon appears, or some sort of giant set piece, you're adrenaline spikes. You then want more, so you go about looking for it, getting bored again. And later finding something else.

What am I getting at?

Having constant bombardment of things can make you numb to them, so when something amazing happens it's suddenly dull, as it's no more special than anything before it. Take the scene in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, where the Eiffel Tower collapses, because of all the other set pieces before, that specific scene didn't feel at all special.

It's all about having to wait for that thrilling moment...

Now take Elite: Dangerous, when hunting for your target, it can take anywhere from 10 minutes to 3 hours. If it takes 3 hours it's a very long and boring task. But what happens when you finally find the all-elusive target? Action, a sudden blast of excitement, gunfire and explosions. That moment feels special and you will remember it. It's all about having to wait for that thrilling moment which makes boredom a good thing. When you get the pay off everything before just seems worth it.

Constant brain stimulation can lead to your brain getting lazy, no longer seeking out new and exciting things. Allow yourself get bored from time to time, you will be better off for it.

What does boredom in games mean to you? You know where the comments are, and how to type, so type some responses in those boxes.

Credit for GIF of Emma Stone.

CoD: Advanced Warfare Pre-orders Sales Down Doesn't Mean Out Thu, 30 Oct 2014 05:32:20 -0400 | Narz |

According to the data, Advanced Warfare is expected to sell 40% less than Ghost's and 70% less than 2012 Black Ops 2. Cowen & Co.' analysis of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare pre-order sales suggest the decline of the series to continue this year. Cowen Group Inc. is a firm that provides research and sales trading services for a wide range of businesses. Looking at Amazon pre-order figures for the game, research suggest AW will fall short from its previous games. Cowen & Co. speculated this as an indication the franchise has reach it climax.

In a statement from the research notes:

Advanced Warfare is now pacing almost 40 per cent behind last year's Ghosts (vs. 50 per cent last week) and almost 70 per cent behind 2012's Black Ops 2 (vs. 80 per cent last week). We continue to believe CoD will be down meaningfully vs. last year. With the franchise facing two consecutive significant year on year declines in sales, we think it is prudent to assume it has peaked.

Looking back at CoD: Ghosts, pre-orders were well below expectation due to a result of platform uncertainty. According to a source, Activision Publishing president Epic Hirshberg stated in 2013 that hesitation amongst past CoD pre-orderers was because of console transition without a clear platform players could pre-order for.

Surprisingly enough despite the dip in pre-orders, digital sales in Q2 2013 broke records. The question then is, does digital sales and pre-orders get factored into analyst expectations? 

When looking at COD: Modern Warfare 3, we see that it didn't hit its milestone of $1 Billion until 16 days after launch [Source]. The issue then comes down to the pre-orders and not necessarily with Call of Duty. Both Activision and Gamestop confirm that a significant portion of sales are digital, which are not seen in pre-orders. 

In an article by Games Industry, it states that AW is expected to outsell Destiny. Regardless of the expectations of a dip in COD: AW sales based on pre-orders, Cowen & Co. notices three key points of the research "(1) preorders for Call of Duty are down (2) Call of Duty is normally a significant percentage of overall preorders and thus (3) interested parties are concluding that preorders are secularly declining relative to overall sales."

Currently, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is ranked #2 under Destiny above critically acclaim titles like Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, and The Evil Within.

You may be wondering what are the methodologies used to come up with these expectations. From the research notes, Cowen & Co. listed the following ways they factored their expectations.

1. "Every week between E3 and the end of the calendar year, we measure the Amazon video game sales ranking for all AAA core gamer titles which are due for release between August and December, capturing data for Xbox and PlayStation consoles (both generations)."

2. "We take those rankings and apply factors from a multi-variable regression analysis that we performed on the 2011-13 data to arrive at a score for each game."

3. "The resulting score is meant to be a more or less linear measure of total sales of the game across all SKUs up to that point; pre-launch, it is an estimate of preorders, and post-launch, it is an estimate of total sales. Thus, a title with a score of 50 is estimated to have sold/pre-sold twice as many units as a title with a score of 25."

Do you feel 3rd party research firms truly know about the gaming business and can make accurate expectations? Tell me your thoughts below!

Call of Duty's New Exoskeleton Becomes Optional on Multiplayer Tue, 19 Aug 2014 17:38:41 -0400 Chris_Lemus

Sledgehammer Games developers introduced the exoskeleton suit to their latest Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare title, and while it makes the game unique from previous titles, they will now be changing the online dress code as to how players can use them in multiplayer matches.

"We understand that some players may want to go back to the more traditional style," Condrey said to YouTuber DvLZStaTioN, ”so there will be a traditional playlist where you can play Team Deathmatch and Domination and Capture the Flag and others without boost jump, without the Exo.”

Without the suits, players will not be able perform abilities such as double jump, cloak themselves, extend melee combos, or activate shields.

In addition to the Advanced Warfare playlist and traditional matches, a third multiplayer mode will be revealed at a later date. Speculation is rising the mode may either be a survival mode similar to the version Sledgehammer Games put in Modern Warfare 3 or a zombie A.I. defense.

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare will be released for the PlayStation 3 and 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows on November 4.

Section 18: A Call of Duty Clan With A Positive Plan Tue, 12 Nov 2013 23:20:15 -0500 Coatedpolecat

Now imagine everyone has a microphone and is competing to win first place in a video game. A virtual space with no real repercussions. Probably not the ideal way to meet nice folks who just want to play with other like-minded people. I know I've had countless 8 year old's attempt to put me in my place. That's where "clans" come in, a collective of your peers striving to accomplish the same goal.

Clans can take shape in any game, most notably in massively multiplayer online games, first-person shooters, real-time strategy, and role-playing games.  They allow for those like-minded individuals to coordinate strategies, politics, and communicate throughout the match. This can occasionally result in friendships; the rest of the time, mmm... not so much. 

Finding mature, friendly people on the internet isn't easy. 

I'm sorry... did you say c-c-c-clans!?

The kind of clans we're talking about here is for first-person shooters.  Typically they can have a bad rap, there's a lot of yelling, cursing, and racists slurs; the audible harassment is limitless.  Not all clans offer such harrowing experiences; though I've yet to personally find one that can maintain a positive atmosphere.  There is hope though, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

SECTION 18 comes to mind when I think of positivity in clans, and what they're aspiring to do is something that resonates with me.  I'm very passionate about shinning a spotlight on the good that gamers do.  I was lucky enough to ask the clan leader (who doesn't like the title, he prefers "just another member".) Raynor Sky,  what's the purpose of the clan?

"...what makes Section 18 not only a clan to definitely look out for [in the] coming months [is] a community that takes pride in making new found friendships with gamers, and molding them into the gamers of the future."

Though this is an admirable stance to take, yearning to genuinely set a goal of having a true kinship with your fellow gamers seems like a pipe dream.  Reality has to set in at some point.  How long has something like this gone on for? What goals are there to reinforce a positive, ambitious atmosphere?  Raynor immediately responded:

"'You will see the positive attitude that all clan mates have shown over the last few years... [as] we are currently trying to qualify for the EGL (European Gaming League) & MLG (major league gaming)"

Having the ability to communicate effectively is paramount when competing against highly skilled opponents.  There are thousands of teams competing to win the cash prize during a sponsored gaming tournament.  MLG and EGL are two of the biggest events in eSports.

"Pennies make dollars"

As a big proponent of positivity in games, I find Raynor's take on gaming quite refreshing.  Hopefully with more positive attitudes out there we can instead encourage people to pride themselves on contributing to a fun, yet competitive atmosphere.  It may only be one clan, but I know I'm not alone with the desire to find positive people and experiences online.  I asked Mr. Sky if there was any room for more people to join the clan?

"Section 18 is always looking for new committed members, GFX artist, and editors to come and join the growing community. [We are] more than just a clan. Others should be inspired to have the same teamwork, and spirit [that] Section 18 members have."

"...they have reached the maximum clan level, in both Modern Warfare 3 and Black Ops 2, and are already working to make this a completion in Ghosts..."

As games become more engrained in our culture, we have a responsibility to "treat others as you wish to be treated."  Think about all the newcomers to video games and interacting with those people online. China just lifted a ban against consoles earlier this year, that's an entire audience who hasn't experienced this aspect of online communication.  We have more children than ever playing video games, and now interacting with these hostile personalities.  I believe Peter Parker's Uncle Ben said it best, "with great power, comes great responsiblity."  The desire to create and grow a positive environment is one we should all have, and one we need to work together to achieve.  Maybe, just maybe with enough work we can rid ourselves of these negative connotations that gamers or clans are immature, anti-social, and unfriendly. 

GioTeck sponsers the rapidly growing and friendly neighborhood SECTION 18.  SECTION 18 can been seen on,, and be contacted on Facebook, and Twitter.

You're only cool if you keep up with the latest in all things gaming at  And don't forget, if you're too lazy to type, follow @Gameskinny on Twitter.  All you'll have to do is click the link. 

Be sure to follow me too @Coatedpolecat, because you deserve it.

Jordan "Proofy" Cannon Shoots For Perfection In Call Of Duty Fri, 13 Sep 2013 11:26:57 -0400 John Gaudiosi

Jordan DeAndre Cannon is known as “Proofy” to Call of Duty fans around the world. The pro gamer became hooked on gaming through his brothers and had a controller in his hand at age four (even if it was unplugged). By seven, he was a solid gamer and he continued hitting the sticks through high school. By the time his graduation rolled around at Edsel Ford High School in Detroit, he skipped walking down the aisle to compete in his first Major League Gaming (MLG) competition in Anaheim.

Proofy went on to win MLG titles for Call of Duty: Black Ops in Dallas, Columbus, Anaheim, Raleigh and Orlando and other cities. He has also won competitions in the European Gaming League and placed high in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Modern Warfare 2 and Modern Warfare 3. Gaming literally helped him support his single mother and rise from a life of poverty in Detroit. He’s now captain of Team EnVyUs and one of the top Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 players in the world.

Proofy, who’s sponsored by Astro Gaming, Scuf Gaming and Gamer Grip USA, was at GameStop Expo with Otter Box in Las Vegas to offer fans tips on how to shoot to kill in Treyarch’s hit game. He took a break from sniping to talk about the rise of pro gaming in this exclusive interview.

How have you seen eSports grow over the last few years?

I’m a player who has been around since COD 4, when tournaments weren’t that big and spectators weren’t there. I’ve seen the growth from there to now and it’s amazing. Just talking about Twitter followers, every pro player has gained over 40,000 Twitter followers over the course the year for Black Ops 2.  The growth is tremendous.  The sport is awesome and I love everything about it right now.

What role has livestreaming played for you guys over the last two years?

Livestreaming gives fans and supporters a better opportunity to get involved with us.  Now,    I’m playing on my personal stream.  We get to talk to fans in chats.  We get to read all their questions and answer anything people talk about.  It’s really just a better way to get involved with your supporters rather than them coming to tournaments and talking to you for a few seconds.  It’s better to have more streaming.

What are your thoughts about League of Legends and how it seems to be taking over eSports?

Just learn.  Learn from everything that LOL does.  Obviously, they’re already two steps ahead of us in every aspect as far as professionalism, team houses, contracted players.  They are what we want to be.  We need to continue to improve and learn from them.  Not hate on them.

When it comes to Call of Duty what’s it like being in a gaming house?

My team is in a team house now too so the growth is definitely there.  The numbers are there and the support is there.  I can see it growing and if it continues at this rate we will be there with LOL in no time.

When it comes to Black Ops 2, what role did having a former pro helping Treyarch develop that game have with eSports?

Treyarch pretty much have someone that’s real fast to get an inside voice. They might read our questions and they might listen to us, but Hastr0 actually works there.  He’s able to give them firsthand input into things like COD caster mode.  That was the best implementation you could put into the game.  I thought that was amazing for them to do. You can sit there and see the mini maps, where both teams are, how they’re attacking, how they’re rotating and strategies.  It brings a whole new game to the spectator experience and I love it.

Now, this is called eSports. Can you give us a sense of how much like a real sport you feel playing Call of Duty is?

I think of it as competition.  You want to beat that other guy and in anything you do in life as a sport, it’s you versus someone else and that’s how I think of it. The competitive aspect is up there with any other sport.

Do you have any background playing any traditional sports that have helped?

I played baseball. I’ve played basketball.  Baseball is my favorite sport.  I’ve played it all my life. It’s just about your composure. I’ve gained the most from real sports and playing online.  Your composure has to remain there. You can’t get nervous. You can’t free out. Just be a good person in general with all the fans and everything. You learn to control yourself and be a better person.

What do you feel you’ve sacrificed to become a professional eSports player?

I’ve sacrificed a lot. You have to make sacrifices when you’re chasing a dream that you want to do. That’s a problem with a lot of people putting forth that 110 percent effort to chase their dreams. I put everything aside and I have family and friends that understand what I’m doing.  With school, I took a break just to see where I can go with this and it’s been going really good. And if I need to go back to school or do anything that I need to go back to, I will.

Where do you see eSports in the U.S. five years from now if you want to compare it to other countries?

Televised and a professional sport.

How important will television be considering the success livestreaming has had?

It would just be an additional way to watch it. I think it would be bigger online than it would be on television, but anything televised makes it more official. It’s that you’re on TV. It’s that kind of aspect, so I definitely can see it being televised in the next five years.

What’s been a secret to your success thus far in Black Ops 2?

Sticking with one team. Don’t leave teams. Don’t hop around. Stay in a family. Stay in a home. Stay stable.

5 Easy Ways To Completely Ruin Any Game Sat, 20 Jul 2013 22:51:21 -0400 Ask Erin

Number 5: Design for the Top 5% of Your Audience

Game developers everywhere, let me introduce you to a bell curve...

No, no, no. Not a "belle" curve, you nitwits. A bell curve. Bell curve...

marketing bell curve from early adopters to laggards

There you go. A bell curve is a common distribution in which most of your measured population lies somewhere in the middle (like most tomatoes being maybe 3 or 4 inches across), with just a rare few members of the population existing at one extreme or the other (like running across a tomato the size of a watermelon). In the bell curve above, "innovators" (people willing to try a new technology just because it's new, for example) represent only 2.5% of the general population, while "laggards" (people who are highly reluctant to adopt modern innovations, like video games... cell phones... electricity...) represent 16%. Everyone else falls somewhere in between.

My number 5 pet peeve is game development that targets the top 5% of a gaming population while basically ignoring the middle 90%. (That doesn't add up to 100%, smarty pants, because of the bottom 5% at the other end. Now quit being so critical and work with me here.) The top 5% of an MMORPG population plays on $2,000+ machines with blazing internet connections. They live, breathe, and sleep thier favorite game. They play 10 hours a day or more, torso of a human skeletonand they spend the other 6 to 8 waking hours trolling through the game forums and sneaking peaks at game videos on their mobile phone in the middle of class... and dinner... and board meetings... As best I can tell, some of them are on the forums sleep typing, for all the sense they're making, but I digress. My bone to pick here is not with the gamers. It's with the developers.

Game developers love top-five-percenters because these superfans are all over the game forums talking about how awesome and amazing and scrumpdillyspectaculicious the game is, and how they desperately need new content right now or they are going to run screaming into the street or jump out a window in their heart-bursting angst. And, really, who can blame developers for wanting to be treated like stars? But 90% of the gaming population is made up of perfectly decent gamers with perfectly decent machines who don't have enough time to both play the game and be active on the gaming forums, so at the end of the day something like 80-90% of the feedback that developers are getting on the gaming forums is from more like 5-10% of the gaming population. It's no wonder they're getting a skewed view of player preferences.

So, what's the problem with designing for the top players? Dear God what isn't. Graphics are pushed too far for average graphics chips. The speed required to play even in PvE is pushed too far for average internet connections. The time required to gear is pushed too far for average work schedules. The time required to level is minimized to the point of absurdity until the game has almost no story left and becomes all about max level progression. (Yes, minimized. Hardcore gamers--and yes, there are exceptions, but I'm talking as a general population--want alts, alts, and more alts. And they don't want to wait for them.) The list goes on and on. 

The developer loses out too, by the way, because the top 5% of the population in a pay-to-play system accounts for an equally small percent of their overall income. Now, designing for the top echelon in a pay-to-win system at least makes more economic sense because the top 5% are paying a lot more than everyone else, but the resulting play experience is going to be just as miserable for the average player, if not more so.

Number 4: Design for the Bottom 5%

I don't see developers making this mistake as often, but the result is just as bad. Near the end of a game's life cycle, after it has been developing content for the top 5% for too long and has driven away far too many of its middle-of-the-road players, a developer will sometimes flip-flop strategies, trying too hard to fix the problem by doing too much too late, simplifying what was once a complex game to the point of absurdity, in an attempt to cater to the other end of the spectrum and expand their market by attracting younger players. The developer adds things like pandas and pokemon in a complete 180, finally abandoning the voice of the top 5% by catering to the bottom 5%. It's a sign of the end, my friends, a sign of the end.

Number 3: Income-stream Overkill

My number 3 way to kill a game is to push so hard for income streams that the game just stops being fun at all. When you work for three months to get some in-game item and then the very next day the developer offers something that looks even cooler for the bargain price of $9.95 you have to ask yourself what's the point of playing? If I wanted to spend my online free time spending real life money to try to look as cool as the next gal I'd spend my afternoons cruising Piperlime for boot sales. 

Just as bad is the game developer that moves a solid PC title onto a mobile platform, making it free to download but then ungodly difficult to get that perfect score without "powerups" that you have to buy... and buy... and buy... (Can you say Diner Dash?) Yeah, let's take a perfectly decent casual title and turn it into a black hole of death just waiting to suck a gamer's money down into its greedy maw. Enough said, I think.

Number 2: Deviate from Your Core Identity

Every game has a core look, a core play style, a core feel that first attracts the people who come to love it. But sometimes a game's very popularity can become its downfall. Suddenly the developer is getting user requests all over the map, pulling them in a thousand different directions. If the developer doesn't have a core vision that it can stick to against the rising tide of clamoring players, it's going to be tempted to try to be everything to everyone and end up being nothing but a hodge-podge of gaming cliches that don't even hold together.

Add animals! Add pets! Add facebook! Add twitter! Add achievements! Add leader boards! Add motorcycles to the medieval castles! Add castles to the racetrack! Add a racetrack on my farm! Add a farm to my training camp! Add a training camp to my pirate ship! Add a pirate ship to my land-locked fortress!


The only game in the world that could really work being this eclectic is Disney's upcoming Infinity, rated E for Everyone, by the way, 10 and up because of some cartoon violence. If you're not Disney, you can't get away with it. Pick a direction and stick with it.

Number 1: Bad Interface Design

As bad as all of the above gaffes are, none is as bad as a poorly designed interface--period--making this my number one pet peeve in bad game design. When you enter the gaming world for the first time, getting around should be intuitive. Even if achieving a game objective is difficult, navigating the interface shouldn't be.

Let's look at two examples. First, the bad: James Cameron's Avatar, The Game. I'm not talking The Avatar from the cartoon series. I'm talking the one from the movie. Oh, right, they were both movies. But I'm talking about the movie with the tall blue aliens. Yes, that one. I loved that movie. When the game came out on Playstation 3 I just had to have it. I bought it when it was first published, at full price, which I almost never do, because I just couldn't wait to be immersed in that world. Only immersed was a little too like it. As in immersed over my head. As in drowning.

I love a game that makes me think, but I want to be forced to think about problems inside the gaming world--how can I get around that mountain?--how can I open this treasure box?--not, which of these stupid buttons is forward again?

Now compare that to Call of Duty MW3, a game I picked up on something of a whim since I don't usually go for first-person shooters. The first thing I ever did in the game was to PvP as a level 1 in a death match with a ton of level 80's. I got decimated, obviously, but at least I could move around. Within moments I could run, I could shoot, I could duck, I could reload, all without ever thinking about it again.

Sure, I sprayed about 37 bullets in the general direction of a level 80, who calmly turned around and one-shotted me in the face while running backwards and jumping over a retaining wall. But at least I understood what happened. That's a place you can learn from.

So please, game developers around the world, I'm begging you. Even if you insist on designing for the top or bottom 5% of your audience; even if you add so many income streams to your revenue plan that I can't turn around without stumbling over something else to buy; even if you introduce elves and engineers, pandas and motorcycles into the same gaming universe; please, please, at least make it easy for me to find my damn sword and point it at something appropriate.

Modern Warfare 4 Rumor Mill Spins Thu, 18 Jul 2013 14:56:47 -0400 GabrielKross

Rob Valdivia may have goofed. His LinkedIn profile page said he is developing photo real visual effects for the next Call of Duty. For those that don't know, Rob Valdivia is the senior VFX artist at Sledgehammer Games. Sledgehammer Games having worked with Infinity Ward on Modern Warfare 3.

Since the information was pointed out, it has been removed from Valdivia's profile page, but the damage has been done. People are now talking about Modern Warfare 4 possibilities again. Whether that was the intent behind the leak or if it was an honest mistake, we've yet to be told.

So far as I can see nothing official has come from Sledgehammer Games in response to the incident. I've scoured Google on the latest from Sledgehammer Games, and they appear to be letting fans speculate. It's actually a good PR trick if true, because the fans can build up the hype while Sledgehammer has nothing official to show. Sledgehammer can come out with an official response later when they have actual footage and they'll have a large audience tuned in to see these details. Whether or not the rumors or true? We'll just have to wait patiently and see.

Call of Duty: Ghosts Exclusive Interview With Infinity Ward Producer Mark Rubin Tue, 21 May 2013 13:59:11 -0400 John Gaudiosi

Last week I had the opportunity to see Call of Duty: Ghosts in action at the Activision pre-E3 event before the Xbox One Reveal today at Microsoft's Redmond headquarters. The new game engine technology behind Ghosts is quite impressive, as is the decision to go with a new story and new characters. Also intriguing is Infinity Ward’s decision to continue to work with Hollywood talent. This time, acclaimed director Stephen Gaghan has embedded himself in the game’s production. The Modern Warfare games, and more recently Black Ops II with David S. Goyer in the Hollywood spotlight, have focused on cinematic storytelling.

“We wanted the characters in this game to feel like real people,” said Mark Rubin, executive producer on Ghosts at Infinity Ward. “Stephen Gaghan brings that to the tablet. And the new game engine makes everything around you more lifelike to pull the player into this story. Modern Warfare 3 pushed that engine to its limits, but Ghosts brings visual fidelity never before possible to the franchise.”

Some of the technology buzz words that Rubin focused on were things like Sub D, which boosts the polygon count in real-time to create perfectly smooth curves (no more jaggies up-close), HDR lighting (for those cool light ray effects coming through the treetops or from the ocean surface) and subsurface skin and self-casting shadows. What this means is when the Ghosts are trekking through the jungle or fighting across a stream or diving into the ocean in the middle of combat, everything looks lifelike – especially with next gen technology added to the mix. The extra processing power of the PC, PlayStation 4 and XBox One is creating geometry on the fly in-engine in real-time, and this is happening all over the terrain in the game.

Rubin showcased a jungle level filled with HDR-based lighting featuring real-time volumetric lighting effects. With the increases in particles, the visual fidelity of those particles brings the world to photorealistic life. He also said the studio has been busy hiring. In addition to Gaghan, Infinity Ward has hired a number of talent from Hollywood and brought new technology philosophies from movies to this game.

“The gameplay drives the technology,” said Rubin. “When you’re running in Ghosts and come to a wall or obstacle you leap and keep your momentum going forward. You can now lean feature for a better view of the battlefield. When you’re running, you can slide to get out of the line of fire, and do it in a cool way.”

In Ghosts, America is crippled and the government is in disarray. The player is outmanned and outgunned, which is a stark contrast to the Modern Warfare games where the cavalry was always coming to help you out. The Ghosts are remnants of the different branches of the Special Forces. They’ve adopted the various fighting skills and parlayed that into a force to be reckoned with – which you’ll take control of.

One of the cool new aspects of the game is the dog. His name hasn’t been revealed, but his role has. He will be part of the family dynamic of the gameplay. Two of the Ghosts are brothers and the dog takes on a vital role as he sniffs out explosives, warns you about enemies and is an instrumental part of the squad. Infinity Ward actually used a real German Shepherd in performance capture to bring this K-9 to life in the game. I’m a dog lover and dog rescuer, so having a dog in a game that you don’t have to shoot is awesome. The new gameplay dynamic this dog introduces is pretty interesting.

Rubin also said multiplayer has been revamped. A lot of the specifics are being held for a later date, but the maps we’ll be fighting on this November 5 will feature dynamic events. Natural disasters like floods and earthquakes will change the battlefield, quite literally. Gamers will also be able to trigger man-made obstacles like unleashing logs down a hill or activating explosive traps. This has the potential to change the way online multiplayer is strategized.

According to Rubin, all of this new technology has been utilized to immerse the player further into the gameplay. In other words, it’s not tech for tech’s sake. The underwater sequence Rubin showed us in LA was amazing. It felt like I was watching real HD footage of the ocean with the schools of fish, coral reefs and sharks. Of course, the battle that was taking place above and below the surface made it obvious that this is another epic Call of Duty game. Prepare to become a Ghost this fall. Prepare for next gen gaming.

10 Ultimate Edition Games for Sale on The PlayStation Network Mon, 20 May 2013 16:02:01 -0400 Ashley Shankle

PlayStation 3 owners can get in one some nice deals starting tomorrow! Ten big-name games are going on sale paired with the entirety of their respective DLC, which makes these what Sony calls the "Ultimate Edition" of these titles.

These Ultimate Edition bundles will be available via the PlayStation Network and are up to 65% off for standard users; up to 75% off for PS+ account holders.

The games being discounted are listed below with both their standard PlayStation Plus price-points:

  • Assassin's Creed 3 Ultimate Edition - $69.99 (PS+ $62.99)
  • Batman: Arkham City Ultimate Edition - $28.99 (PS+ $23.19)
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Ultimate Edition - $69.99 (PS+ $62.99)
  • DmC Devil May Cry Ultimate Edition - $52.49 (PS+ $47.24)
  • Far Cry 3 Ultimate Edition - $55.99 (PS+ $50.39)
  • Max Payne 3 Ultimate Edition - $29.99 (PS+ $20.99)
  • Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Ultimate Edition - $63.99 (PS+ $44.79)
  • Persona 4 Arena Ultimate Edition - $39.99 (PS+ $27.99)
  • Starhawk Ultimate Edition - $23.49 (PS+ $16.44)
  • TRANSFORMERS: Fall of Cybertron Ultimate Edition - $62.99 (PS+ $56.69)

These deals can be found on the PlayStation Store starting tomorrow, and will last until May 27.

The Ongoing War of Big Gaming Businesses (Part 1): Repetitive Game Releasing Fri, 03 May 2013 22:36:39 -0400 Jay Yuh

 The War of the Gaming Market


“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

–Albert Einstein


Let’s face it, Einstein states a very true fact. I think not only the Call of Duty/Battlefield players are going insane but perhaps the big gaming companies that are around today are as well.

 Call of Duty: A new game in the series just about every year.

Gamers, noobs, anyone, take a look at the last decade if you are old enough. You don’t even have to think too far back or too deep to remember. I want to ask you, reader, how many Call of Duty and Battlefield games have been released since 2003.


The Main Call of Duty Series List.

  1. Call of Duty (2003)
  2. Call of Duty 2 (2005)
  3. Call of Duty 3 (2006)
  4. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007)
  5. Call of Duty: World at War (2008)
  6. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2009)
  7. Call of Duty: Black Ops (2010)
  8. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (2011)
  9. Call of Duty: Black Ops II (2012)
  10. Call of Duty: Ghosts (2013)

Ever since Modern Warfare and World at War, have you seen a resemblance of repetitive material the game gives? Sure enough, we need to finish off the campaign stories which are fantastic by the way according to my brother.

Now let us leave the campaign out of this paragraph and focus on the main things all of the players focus on; multiplayer! Every single game after the 6th and 7th, it has been the same thing. The games had the traditional multiplayer: Team Deathmatch, Search and Destroy etc.. Nazi Zombies, with a couple more minor features added. I am starting to see repetitive motions that Treyarch and Infinity Ward go through every single release now.

Let's take a look at the Battlefield series now.

Battlefield release timeline

  • 2002                Battlefield 1942
  • 2003                Battlefield 1942: The Road to Rome
  • 2003                Battlefield 1942: Secret Weapons of WWII
  • 2004                Battlefield Vietnam
  • 2005                Battlefield 2
  • 2005                Battlefield 2: Special Forces
  • 2005                Battlefield 2: Modern Combat
  • 2006                Battlefield 2: Euro Forces
  • 2006                Battlefield 2: Armored Fury
  • 2006                Battlefield 2142
  • 2007                Battlefield 2142: Northern Strike
  • 2008                Battlefield: Bad Company
  • 2009                Battlefield Heroes
  • 2009                Battlefield 1943
  • 2010                Battlefield: Bad Company 2
  • 2010                Battlefield: Bad Company 2: Vietnam
  • 2010                Battlefield Online
  • 2011                Battlefield Play4Free
  • 2011                Battlefield 3
  • 2011                Battlefield 3: Back to Karkand
  • 2012                Battlefield 3: Close Quarters
  • 2012                Battlefield 3: Armored Kill
  • 2012                Battlefield 3: Aftermath
  • 2013                Battlefield 3: End Game
  • 2013                Battlefield 4

After the release of Battlefield 3 in 2011, Digital Illusions and Electronic Arts have been pushing out content updates as DLC for BF3 like crazy. Then they even announced BF4, saying it was coming out at the end of this year! WTF? It's going to be the same exact thing as BF3! Hm... why are they being hasty on releasing content? Why do they want to push updates so hard?

Connecting the pieces...

Let’s connect the puzzle here. It seems like when one big gaming company wants to release something, all the other big gaming companies go wild because they need to make something just as good or better.

Any kind of company will do this in any kind of business you are in. For example, after the unveiling of the PS4 by Sony, Microsoft had to put together a plan for a new console gaming system too to keep up with business and still stand tall in the competition. 

The wars never end between any companies with advertising proving that their product is better. The bigger problem with this concept is that it’s being applied to big name gaming companies.

In conclusion of this section: Treyarch, Infinity Ward and EA Digital Illusions in my opinion have lost a lot of creativity game feature wise. The companies are no longer producing games because they love doing so or because they actually have new and advanced features, it’s all about money and competition.

They are too focused on releasing their same products, with a few minor tweaks and a different name expecting new/better results--all they are getting is money and fame from the same player base they have had since day 1. Whenever I try out a new Call of Duty game or Battlefield game/DLC, I feel like I'm honestly doing the same thing as I was in Modern Warfare 2/World at War. Running around, shooting people, dying. Running around, shooting people, dying. Kill zombies, switch back to multiplayer, run around, kill people, die, capture an objective.

Hope is here though, not so much for the big gaming companies but perhaps, smaller ones which will be covered in my next session.

North Korean Propaganda Featuring Modern Warfare 3 Removed from YouTube Thu, 07 Feb 2013 08:10:46 -0500 Ashley Shankle

No publisher would be happy to see one of their titles featured in a piece of North Korean propaganda, no matter how fabulously dull it is. Activision has had the infamous propaganda video featuring footage from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 removed from YouTube, for obvious reasons.

The video went live on the official North Korean YouTube channel this past Saturday and spread to LiveLeaks and the rest of the internet just three days later on Tuesday. The BBC reports that Activision took action, having the video blocked and eventually removed entirely due to copyright claims.

We might not be able to view it on YouTube anymore, but the video is still available for viewing over at LiveLeaks and has racked up over 303,000 views over the past two days. The clip from Modern Warfare 3 can be found around the 2:08 mark.

This seems like a funny scenario, but North Korea's looming nuclear testing--despite international condemning--is not amusing in the least.

Call of Duty Makes Appearance in North Korean Propaganda Tue, 05 Feb 2013 09:15:42 -0500 Ashley Shankle

North Korea makes the best anti-American propaganda videos these days. It's just as confusing and ridiculous as we want it to be, and we get a few surprises sprinkled about. This time around that surprise is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, which fits the "confusing and ridiculous" theme so well.

The video, brought to light by LiveLeak, features a man's dream that contains:

  • An instrumental version of "We Are The World" by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie
  • Launching missiles
  • A terrible CG spacecraft, complete with sparkles dust
  • A well-timed clip from Modern Warfare 3 depicting New York being attacked

According to LiveLeak, the text on-screen during and after the New York scene (which starts around 2:08) reads "Somewhere in the United States, black clouds of smoke are billowing."

This is followed by "It seems that the nest of wickedness is ablaze with the fire started by itself."

The man sleeps soundly. He knows that his dream will "surely come true".

Not the worst, not the best. I'd give this a 7/10 on the propaganda scale. I think there should be way more sparkles to show North Korea's true superiority. You've got to dress to impress, guys.

(Via Kotaku)

No Easy Explanation Tue, 18 Dec 2012 12:48:10 -0500 Mat Westhorpe

This morning, I saw with dismay that the most popular newspaper in the UK had run with a sensationalist headline about the Newtown tragedies, predictably implicating video games as a contributing cause of the murders. The Sun headline reads “Killer's Call of Duty Obsession”. Further text fuels the anti-gaming vitriol by claiming that the killer “plotted the Sandy Hook school massacre while obsessively playing violent video games such as Call Of Duty.”

Only when you get much further into their coverage do you get anything approaching a reasoned and mature analysis of the subject matter, with a perspective from Child and Educational Psychologist Teresa Bliss who writes, “There is no doubt that what children watch affects their behaviour. It isn’t healthy for children to watch people destroying other people.”

But the killer was 20 years old, hardly a child. This segment was clearly included to give some kind of credibility to the story's central conceit.

Firsthand Experience

Before I discuss mainstream media's tendency toward this fear-mongering ignorance, please allow me to explain why I feel I am qualified to voice my opinion on this subject.

As a qualified paramedic, I have been a healthcare professional for over a decade, during which time I have dealt with all manner of troubled individuals and have been party to much emotional and physical trauma. I have also nurtured a quiet obsession with video games since my childhood. As such, I have a good understanding of mental health and social issues as well as having a well-developed and balanced view on the relationship between playing video games and murder.

In short: there isn't one.

At least, not in the sense that the sensationalist hacks of the world would like you to believe. There are certainly health and social behaviour concerns with regard to playing video games and using the internet. But withdrawing from the real world into video games or living out an existence on the internet are symptoms, not causes. In some cases, that behaviour is a coping mechanism.

In my case, I recall one particular weekend when, after attending particularly gruesome traffic accident, I couldn't sleep, so I constantly played Battlefield 1942 and drank a hell of a lot of coffee. I think I avoided sleep for 56 hours, during which time I attended two 12-hour night shifts. Looking back, it wasn't a healthy or particularly responsible choice and I certainly wouldn't recommend or condone it.

But at no point did I come to the conclusion that my lot would be improved if I applied my Battlefield 1942 Iwo Jima blitzkrieg tactics to the local primary school. Just as when I was a troubled schoolchild, I didn't start jumping from high places and head-butting lightbulbs because I'd been playing Chuckie Egg.

Despite my video game obsession and my developmental experiences (child of a broken home, bullied at school, close friend died when I was fifteen), I am not a killer. Why? Because I understood appropriate behaviour and had a solid grasp of the difference between reality and fantasy and – crucially – I am sane.

Society's Blame Game

In times of tragedy, it is human nature to try to make sense of the senseless, which is why emotive and misleading campaigns aimed at video games are all the more tasteless. At best they are attempts to find an explanation in the search for closure. At worst they are misguided scapegoating with the same militant agenda (see Jack Thompson for more details) that saw the Daily Mail claim that Microsoft Flight Simulator was behind the World Trade Centre attacks of 9/11.

However, exposure to video games does become a priority issue with regard to the vulnerable; be they children or the mentally ill. Children are still developing and forming their moral and behavioural rules, so parents should certainly be mindful of what influences their world view. This applies as much to their exposure to language and images used on television and the printed media as it does with movies and video games, so writers of inaccurate and sensationalist news coverage should not think they are absolved of responsibility.

Parental guidance and control is crucial, especially in today's increasingly isolationist societies. Youngsters need to be given the tools to integrate and communicate. Extended family and friends are an important influence too. If these support networks are absent, this is when extreme behaviours start to polarise.

Before video games, children were still exposed to violent concepts. They were encouraged to fantasize about cops and robbers, cowboys and indians, tanks and soldiers. Conflict and weapons are sadly part of human nature and forewarning children of that reality is a necessary part of their education and development, but it needs to be handled with care and sensitivity through intelligent parenting.

Society needs to take more responsibility for itself and its members, even with adults. But the tendency for individuals to be cast adrift from the mainstream and find comfort in solitary activities is not new. Obsessive behaviours and addictions manifest in many forms. In the UK – and likely most western cultures – alcoholism is the most widespread indulgence for the lonely, broken individual.

Domestic violence, abuse and crime all increase as a result of aberrant behaviours and obsessions, devolving into mental health issues. But it is not obsession or substance abuse that is the root cause of the problem, simply the individual's chosen method of avoiding the core issue. The individual's inability to exercise self control leads them to exacerbate their poor mental state, but it is unlikely that is the focus of the obsession which caused that state.

Who is Responsible?

It is much the same with video games. They should not be blamed for ill health, although over-dependency on them can be a key indicator of underlying emotional or social problems and can certainly prevent recovery or even worsen a mental illness. But it's a fine line, they can also be a valuable crutch. For me, video games provided a coping mechanism during some dark periods of my life and I am grateful for that.

However, please understand I am not extolling the health-sustaining virtues of of video games. Far from it.

I am now a happily married 37-year-old and soon to be a father. I still play video games fairly obsessively and I am aware that they do affect mood and behaviour. Following a sustained period of Planetside 2, my wife has observed how I would become irritable. She too has been subject to the influence of gaming - after a competitive session of Mario Kart Wii, we've both learned not to get behind the wheel of a real car for at least 20 minutes, our spatial awareness and grasp of physics is definitely influenced at a subconscious level.

That's the key – appropriate management. Video games are a part of everyday existence, but as with all things in life, balance and moderation are vital. Like alcohol, food or any number of other aspects of day-to-day living, video games are not unhealthy unless allowed to be. It's about personal and social responsibility.

There is no denying that video games are influential and as such, should be respected. They can be a tool for education as much as entertainment, a method of relaxation or stimulation. But equally they can be the blanket that masks other problems and an excuse for the ignorant to make sweeping and inaccurate statements.

As a final point to the tabloid fearmongers; Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 reached over $1bn retail sales in the first 15 days following its release on 15 November 2012. Similar figures apply to its predecessor Modern Warfare 3 last year. Given the widespread global distribution of this “violent video game”, if the Call of Duty franchise or any similar game had the influence they imply with their crass coverage, then surely we would be in the middle of a game-induced apocalypse as millions of affected players rise up to slaughter their fellow man. Clearly, that has not happened, so perhaps it’s time the press re-evaluated their interpretation of facts and their own responsibilities.

In future, maybe they should let the educational psychologist write the article.




Sources: The Sun, Joystiq