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Call of Duty

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Call of Duty review

From the start Call of Duty for the PC is one heck of a good game. This first person based action game places the player in the boots of a ww2 infantry man, or to be more exact three different infantry men, a U.S. paratrooper, a British soldier and a Russian conscript (later promoted).

The game starts with a short boot camp tutorial level and then throws you into the thick of the action. The first campaign is the U.S. one, here you are inserted via paradrop into France during the Normandy landings with the task of taking and holding key targets effectively behind the lines. You soon link up with fellow U.S. paratroopers and combat your way through the French countryside and urban environment.
I will not go into more detail than this as it would spoil the action for you. Suffice to say there's never a dull moment. When completed you enter the British campaign and then the Russian one, both of which are every bit as good as the first.
Call of duty is a heavily scripted computer game. Certain points in the game trigger given actions such as an ambush, artillery strike etc. This is coupled with pretty effective artificial intelligence however so is not such a bad thing. The opposition will take cover effectively and throw grenades trying to flush you out of cover into their MP44 sights. Or they will strafe your position with MG42 fire keeping you pinned while flanking your position. Overall they provide a tough obstacle to overcome. They are also pretty good shots, though not perfect thankfully.

If left purely to your own devices you would not last long in this games tough environment, thankfully you have plenty of squadmates on your side who also have effective intelligence and draw fire nicely from your position. It can be a challenge to avoid blue on blue at times though especially when clearing out a building where snap shots are often required, just keep track of where your buddies are.

Graphically Call of Duty is a good looking computer game. The engine is based on the once top of the line Quake 3 game engine which whilst surpassed now still looks good enough. Frame rates are good on my Athlon 2600mhz computer system while running at 1600x1200 resolution. Graphics card is a Radeon 9800pro and the rig has 1gb ddr memory. The game would be playable on much lesser computers than this at lower resolutions.

Character animation is well implimented with set piece animations, rag doll physics would be good but Call of Duty gets by OK without it. I particularly like the tank models used in the game, the T-34s have rotating wheels as well as moving tracks and look great, the Tiger mk1 tanks also look terrific. Buildings look realistic, not quite up to Half Life 2 standards but not a million miles away, water effects are also done well.

Of particular note in this game is the ability to raise your armament to your shoulder and sight it through it's iron sights. Doing this not only looks way cool but increases accuracy and gives a much more visceral feel to the game. You can also fire from the hip as in other games at reduced accuracy of course, additionally you can clober the other guy with your butt (gun butt that is!)
Every game should allow this method of gun raising it's so good.

Plenty of ordance is available in Call of Duty, from the British Sten SMG (not much more than a tube and springs), Bren light MG (superbly recreated), German MP40, MP44, FG42 (highly effective), Russian PPSh SMG (huge clip but inaccurate at range). Rifles including the Brit. Lee-Enfield, Russian Mosin-Nagant with or without scope are included plus many more including pistol side arms and 'pineapples' of different styles.
All of these are very well implimented and make the computer game.

Sound is done with style in this FPS. Each piece of metal spitting machinery you pick up sounds suitably brutal and equally individual. Shells hits sound like shell hits (just lacking the shock wave and shrapnel thankfully, here's hoping they never find a way to simulate that!) Voice acting is first class with individual soldiers asking for covering fire or warning you about unseen opposing force positions.
Overall there is little that could be improved from the audio standpoint.
Overall then this game is a real winner, it is not overly long however and will definitely leave you wanting more as it did me. Every bit of the game is quality though and will provide some memorable action sequencies which will likely populate your dreamworld for some time.
There are expansion packs out for this game now and a full blown sequel. Looking forward to trying them out.

Great game, if you haven't yet played it lucky you, go out and buy it now and have twenty hours of awesome entertainment. What I want now is one of those Men in Black style memory erasers so I can play it afresh all over again.

Call of Duty SCORECARD

Graphics 8.5/10
Sound 9.5/10
Gameplay 9/10
Originality 8/10

Computer Games score 9/10