At the tender age of eleven, the original Call of Duty (2003) was released to the general public and was widely regarded as the best of the WW2 genre, doing better in one game than Medal of Honour had done in several. Suffice to say I loved it, as being raised on the PlayStation I had suffered the worst (and the best) of the inferior series so it was interesting to see somebody finally get it right. Now it wasn't until very recently that I have been as blessed in the 'PC hardware' department as I was in 2003, so when Infinity Ward released Call of Duty 2 (2005) two years later the title passed me by. In fact, the only impact the series had on me between 2003 and 2007 was that of the knock off titles the company released for the X-Box, which I purchased in the hope of recapturing former glory.
Personally, I've never been one of these players as I represent a different part of the community: a competitive player who shows little to no interest in the single-player portion of the game, and makes the purchase to play with friends or strangers in a competitive setting. The series experimented with online multi-player sections of all of their previous games, but it wasn't until the original Modern Warfare that they perfected the custom load-out implementation that has been succinct with the series ever since, giving players the choice to choose not only their own set of weapons, but own set of perks and special abilities to turn the tides of battle. I've always attributed my joy in online play to that of other competitive activities such as sport, albeit with considerably less moving around. The mentality of beating someone else or being part of a team that can do the same can be a wonderful feeling, so long as you can take losing in equal measure.
The announcement of Call of Duty: Ghosts (coming as early as this November) was inevitable as since Infinity Ward’s (the company behind Modern Warfare) rival company Activision have managed to release a game once a year, in a similar fashion to that of games such as Fifa, deepening the link between it and competitive sports. Much like the critics have been saying since Modern Warfare 2, it has been quickly decided that this will mark the game that audiences will start showing fatigue and the series will die the same way games like Guitar Hero have done before. My opinion? Not really, much like Fifa the developers have so far gotten away with changing little about the title in terms of core mechanics and seeing not only sales increase but also keeping gamers like myself purchasing; albeit in a begrudging fashion, much like buying a new iPod, you can almost feel the greedy American executive laughing behind your back. Call of Duty is one of my many guilty pleasures, and whilst the optimist in me wants the new game to launch a new paradigm, I imagine it'll be remarkably similar to what we've seen before.
File Call of Duty: Ghosts under: Come back to me in November. For now, check out the 'oh-so-profound' trailer below...