The Shooter Debacle: Call of Duty or Battlefield?

by Anthony Bonilla

Hey there readers, with the last months of the year quickly approaching, gamers’ yearly debacle starts to come. You see, for gamers every year we have to decide between shooting games, for us it is ‘should I buy Call of Duty or should I buy Battlefield?’ Many would think that it is something easy to decide and would think that it is just get the game on the shelf, and go out and put your money. But nope, that isn’t how it is for us. For us, it isn’t just buying a game, as you know now, many people don’t have nearly enough money to sustain themselves, much less to buy a game or two, so it is extremely frustrating when we don’t get our money’s worth from a game. It has really happened to me only once and it wasn’t that bad cause the game was worth 15$ and it at least brought another game with it that I really liked. Anyways, I am not here to tell you whether you should buy Call of Duty or Battlefield, I am here to say what is good in one side and what is good in the other, it is all to help you decide which one is really worth your money, so that when you play the game you say ‘Damn, that was a great buy.’

Now, you see I am going to be honest with you guys, I’ve played Call of Duty a lot more than I have played Battlefield, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare was the my first ever First Person Shooter that I’ve bought (the First I ever played was Golden Eye 64). Now, this year, I have Battlefield 3 pre-ordered and I will get Modern Warfare 3 for holiday more than likely. Now, as you see I didn’t pre-order Call of Duty because I don’t really like as much as Battlefield, I must be honest with you guys, I enjoy Battlefield a lot more. Now, I am not going to be bias with a game or the other, I am here to put out what game gives you something that the other doesn’t and vice-versa.

Now, I will put this on two ways, the pros and the cons of the two games, that way it is easier for me to write it and also easier for you guys to understand what I say and mean that way. I am in no way a pro at writing things like this, so please have a bit of patience at first.


Battlefield 3

Battlefield 3 Cover

Many of you guys may not know this but the guys that develop Battlefield are a small, experienced team from Stockholm, Sweden from the company called DICE. This company is the one that invented the Battlefield series, but not only that series, also one of the best gaming  engines out there: The Frostbite Engine. The most famous (and best) being the Unreal Engine, appearing in hundreds and hundreds of games. Now if you know even a little about videogames, you will know what these engines do. But for those who don’t know what these engines do, it is simple, these engines allow the game creators to introduce things like the destruction that is done by players in Battlefield, better light sources, better reflections from water, better textures on the ground and other things in the environment as well as smoother and better looking gameplay. Engines are really important when it comes to games and Battlefield 3 had Frostbite 2.0 designed just for the game. Now, I’ll leave you with a trailer of the Frostbite 2.0 engine.

As you see, that adds a lot of things that you don’t really see in war games unless it’s scripted. In Battlefield you can destroy buildings by shooting at them, there is no place to hide and online, it’s just madness. But I’ll leave that for later on in the article…

A soldier in Battlefield 3

Pros: Now, let’s start with what I think is the single most important thing in a videogame: storyline. From what I have seen from the storyline (about 20 minutes of so, I always saw their teasers week in and week out) the storyline seems to be one that will be pretty badass. The game is set in 2014, three years from now. The player will take on the role of Staff Sergeant Henry ‘Black’ Blackburn, a member of the United States Marine Corps deployed along the Iran-Iraq border. SSgt Blackburn leads a five-man squad on a mission to locate, find and safely return a US squad investigating a possible chemical weapons site, whose last known position was inside a meat market controlled by a hostile militia. After engaging in several gun battles with hostile forces, Blackburn and his squadmates are caught in a massive earthquake whose epicenter is in Iran. (Shown in the Frostbite trailer) Brief shots from the campaign trailer depict an aerial view of a war-torn city, a column of M1 Abrams tanks being attacked by cluster munitions, and an aerial dogfight between US and Russian fighter aircraft between other things, that is what is known by now from the game’s storyline. The game will let you use vehicles, which is a HUGE pro for me, both in single and multiplayer. The destruction aspect of the  videogame really comes greatly into play when you are in multiplayer. In Battlefield, there is no way of camping, because if you start camping, someone will destroy that house over you or will come and pass you over with a vehicle. That is what I really like about it. Now, a thing that really puts me into this game is that the same team and designers that have developed ALL the Battlefield games are the ones that are developing it. This gives it more continuity, it gives more possibilities to connect the dots between Battlefield games, even give references for games that could  possibly be from before. I don’t know, maybe we’ll see a Bad Company 3 teaser in between the gameplay, I’ll have to keep my eyes open for it. Then, you have the huge online maps and the huge online matches. The gameplay online is mayhem, but in a good way. This is possibly the best online gameplay that you’ll be able to find. You can destroy buildings, drive helicopters and tanks, revive people without the need of use of perks, the huge environments leave you in awe, the aspect of reality makes you drop your jaw and bring a smile to your face, the game looks as good online as it does in multiplayer (this is based from Bad Company 2 and the trailers that have been shown). Overall, how it looks is something really impressive, this game’s graphics, lights, realistic sounds and smooth gameplay overall, make this look like a really impressive game and because it’s DICE making it, I have my full faith that it will be nothing less than spectacular, add in the Frostbite engine and we may be seeing a game of the year environment. Also, if you own a PS3, it comes with a free copy of Battlefield 1943 in the disk, free.

Oh... I know what you'll do there...

Cons: Every game has its pros and their cons. Now, with the Battlefield series I have always seen a problem. The gameplay isn’t the problem, but the biggest problem that I see with it is its story mode. The story mode in Battlefield games always give you about maybe 6 or 7 hours worth of gameplay, which is good, but the missions are extremely long and the checkpoints aren’t the best (this is a problem with a lot of shooting videogames) I think it maybe just a trend, but you got to take it as a con for the game, other than that, I have seen nothing else flawed in
the other Battlefield games. Other than that, you got to take the online multiplayer as a con also. How can this be a pro and a con? Well it depends on your skill level with Battlefield games and also with how much you know of how guns work. The reality of the fact is that the game is REALLY realistic and sniper bullets drop a little depending on the distance of how far you are, also if you aren’t used to Battlefield and you are used to other type of shooting games you’ll most likely get easily frustrated by it. The vehicles will be a pain in the ass for you and the lack of Killstreaks will make you get mad and quit easily. Another turn-off for this game is that it won’t feature offline co-op, so it’ll be one player only. The matter of the fact is that this game is not for everyone, if you haven’t played a Battlefield entry before and you are used to playing Call of Duty, you’ll get easily frustrated by it and probably throw the controller to the floor. My tip would be, if you get it and simply hate it at first, try it, try and get better at it, keep playing, I was horrible at the start, but I kept playing it and I got better, right now, I am always one of the top three players in the lobbies. Other than that, I can’t see a con for it from what we have seen or from the other games.

Gameplay Screenshot

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3

Modern Warfare's 3 Cover

Now, Call of Duty is a game that over 30 Million People Play, about over 20 Million play weekly and about 10 Million play Daily, Call of Duty is one of the biggest franchises in history and it is known by people everywhere. I’ve played Call of Duty with people that are 4 years old (I know, parents shouldn’t allow it, but when the kid starts hitting them on top of the head, they can blame themselves)to people that have over 50 years that I know. It is something not only played by the core gamers but it is also played by new gamers, you mention Call of Duty anywhere and  probably the person beside you will probably ask you whether if you play it on PS3 or 360. Call of Duty is a phenomenon in its own right and it deserves the credit for doing everything that it has done not only for the genre but also for the gaming world. The last two Call of Dutys have shattered expectations, hell they have broken launch day records, not only in game terms but in entertainment terms. It is something that has pushed boundaries and it will keep doing so. Now what makes this Call of Duty different than the other? It takes real locations from around the United States unlike past Call of Dutys. This had never been done before in this franchise. They barely do any real locations with names, they give codenames and nicknames for places, they never put ‘Berlin’ or ‘Manhattan’ as the name of a place in a map, this Call of Duty will do that. Other locations in this game include London, Paris, Manhattan, New York, Berlin and you must also assume Moscow (as the Russians are the attackers – yeah I know, poor Russians). Now, this isn’t a pro or a con, it’s just something that is there. Now, onto the real preview or however you want to  call it.

City in Modern Warfare 3

Pros: Okay, so first, I have to start with the obvious stuff for Modern Warfare 3, the thing why a lot of people get this game is to actually play it in multiplayer, and I have to say that this game, online is great because of the amount of people playing it, you easily can enter a lobby within four or five seconds of choosing a game mode. Also, I have to say that the story mode in Call of Dutys are always good, the thing that makes it good for them is that they skip from character to other characters, giving you different views on the world. The Modern Warfare series is one of the best in shooting history and I can’t take it away from that. One of the best features in Modern Warfare games are the continuity and the characters, in this game we will see the return of Task Force 141 Captain John “Soap” MacTavish, former SAS Captain John Price and Russian informant Nikolai who are on the run after killing the rogue U.S. Army Lieutenant General Shepard, the guy that tried to shoot you in the last game. Russian  Ultranationalist Vladimir Makarov will also serve as the game’s main bad guy, he returns from MW2. Several new playable characters have been added, including Derek “Frost” Westbrook and Sandman, a pair of Delta Force operatives in New York City; previously they were there but they weren’t playable. Marcus Burns, a Sergeant in the Special Air Service fighting in London; and Yuri, a Russian federal security agent. New non-playable characters that have been confirmed so far include Truck and Grunt, Grinch (with Tobey Maguire voicing him). The game will immediately follow the events of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, where the Russian Federation continues its invasion of the United States of America, and has also expanded its offensive to Europe, including England, France and Germany, so basically starting World War 3. Campaign stages are also planned for Somalia, Sierra Leone, Moscow and Dubai. I think that this will make for a great game and campaign.  The other thing that has always been really good about these type of games is the offline co-op where you can play in various environments. In MW3 there are two co-op game styles announced, one that is basically wave survival mode (ala zombies in COD: BO and CO: WAW) and the other is a second version of spec ops which can be played either single or co-op.

German Soldiers in Modern Warfare 3

Cons: Now, Call of Duty has always have a con in my eyes. Yearly releases. You can’t see what has been changed or made better because nothing really has, that is what really puts me off Call of Dutys. You see, this is a really bad thing in my eyes, it is like Sport games, they are released every year, but you can’t see what they changed other than story and characters. Another con about Call of Duty is that they don’t feature dedicated servers, something that they should have added a long, long, LONG time ago, but they haven’t. This makes for sloppy connections, laggy games all the time and being cut in the middle of the match a lot of the time. I am thrown off matches when I have a lot of killstreaks. Spawn trapping  and killstreaks. Now, I know this isn’t a con if you are doing it, but it is a con when you are receiving the other side of the stick, a lot of times people spawn trap you when they make clans because they make coordinated attacks, Killstreaks are really frustrating and most of the time they make players rage quit, which when you are on the receiving end, is really frustrating. Killstreaks make for campers because not a lot of people can really get high killstreaks by running and gunning or knifing. Now, another huge problem for online gameplay is hackers. Those people that are on the last prestige in the first day that the game comes out? Hackers, people that are between walls? Hackers, yeah, Call of Duty’s system is way more vulnerable to hackers and that makes it frustrating when you find them. Now, another huge problem I see with the game is that it isn’t being developed by the same guys that made MW2. It is being developed by Sledgehammer and Raven with Infinity Ward looking over, I think this may affect overall the gameplay but I can’t really say until the game is out. The major thing about this game that frustrates me is the online gameplay,
you see, it is practically its main feature and it is sloppy compared to Battlefield’s. It doesn’t feature destruction, it doesn’t feature huge maps.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not a Call of Duty hater, I just tell things how they are, and in that aspect Battlefield is way better. I really don’t know what to truly expect of this game, but I’ll get it.

Gameplay Screenshot

Now Battlefield doesn’t throw out yearly editions like Call of Duty does, I think that this affects Call of Duty’s standards, when Call of Duty comes out every year, yes, we see a good game, a game that makes us happy meanwhile we are shooting people in the face online and humping their dead bodies (yeah, I know, we are just so cute) but when it comes down to raising the bar, they only put in maybe one or two better killstreaks each year, maybe a better system for when running and throwing themselves to the floor, but other than that, every year, they throw out the same game with a different story and different maps, which for a 60$ price tag isn’t really attractive. I really think that they should instead of putting out new games, put out a expansion pack with story missions and multiplayer maps for maybe 15 to 20$, like Battlefield did in Bad Company 2 with  Vietnam. Meanwhile Battlefield, throws out a game two or three years after the last edition and they do a fantastic job putting better destruction system, better lightning system, a better storyline and a hell lot better online multiplayer. In my opinion, this year, Battlefield 3 is getting way more attention that Bad Company 2 did back when it was released, it is one of the most anticipated games of the year and people are really looking forward to it. Will this year Battlefield 3 put a big blow to the titan that is Call of Duty? Only time will be able to tell, this could be the year where Battlefield gets the attention it always should have. People have noticed what Battlefield 3 is able to do in comparison with Modern Warfare 3, but Modern Warfare 3 has been one of the most expected games since Modern Warfare 2 came out, sure it’s not being developed by the same team… but the thing is, that most people don’t know it. We can’t assume everything from just trailers; we’ll have to wait until the games come out to say what really are the pros and the cons of both. Now, I am really looking forward to playing both games and giving you guys a full review. Feel free to leave comments, suggestions or even questions, I’ll sure reply to you. Writing this article, I have come to one conclusion… we all hate Russia so we throw the World War 3 start to them… Nah, joking, I don’t have anything against Russians… but we sure throw everything against them… With that, I’ll leave you with trailers for both games.

Now until next time, remember to keep earning those trophies and achievements…