Modern War Begets Modern Warfare 3

This fall will see the culmination of what has become one of the biggest money-earning entertainment properties in the world: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare.

In 2007, the creators of the long-lived Call of Duty video game series broke from the norm of recreating World War II-themed conflicts for gamers to play through and released an adventure set in modern times with modern issues.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare thrust gamers into a series of conflicts set in 2011 fuelled by the labyrinthine plotting of an utra-nationalist Russian leader. Players dropped into various missions to stop the rogue Russian, who used a conflict in the Middle East to divert the world's attention as he attempted to reunify Russia to become the Soviet Union of old.

The game was well-received, earning high review scores, a number of awards and selling more than 13 million copies.

While the sequel, released in 2009, didn't have quite the same number of accolades - and the continuing story became even more convoluted - it sold nearly five million copies in the first day and went on to bring in more than $US1 billion in sales.

Last year's Call of Duty: Black Ops, a game created by a different team with an unrelated story line, sold more than seven million copies in the first day and brought in $US1 billion in sales ,in record time.

This November, according to sources familiar with the game (and some official teaser trailers rushed out late Friday), Activision plans to launch Modern Warfare 3, a game that will wrap up much of the plot of the Modern Warfare series. In it, according to sources who shared audio, images and the plot of the game with Kotaku, players will be defending New York from a spreading Russian invasion. The game will also feature terrorist attacks in London, more globe-trotting missions and the use of chemical warfare.

It appears that it will be a game that extends the breadth of settings for the series, the scope of engagements and perhaps push further what is becoming an increasingly controversial series.

Modern Warfare 2 made news when it included a level that had players take on the role of terrorist shooting down crowds in an airport.

While this upcoming sequel doesn't appear to ask gamers to play as bad guys, it will seemingly thrust them into even more uncomfortable settings: Like an embattled New York City or a London victimised by terrorist attacks. Both seem to echo events from the cities' real histories.

Modern Warfare is a series that, despite its two-year development cycles, manages to echo the days' fears. It captures the zeitgeist of a modern world dealing with wars that no longer have rules or boundaries. In creating an alternate future, one plagued by a power-hungry Russia rather than a militant Islamist group, perhaps Activision gives its enormous audience a chance to safely reflect on the current state of war free of the moral baggage of today's real conflicts.

Gaming is escapism, but that doesn't mean it can't have a point.

Well Played is an internationally syndicated weekly news and opinion column about the big stories of the week in the gaming industry and its bigger impact on things to come. Feel free to join in the discussion.


Comments

    "Modern Warfare is a series that, despite its two-year development cycles, manages to echo the days’ fears."

    Yea like how MW2 had the red dawn 'oh noes the russians!!11!' rip off part, so up to date. Russians invading new york and london? how is that a current topic? The current 'war' is in the middle east and the only thing coming anywhere near the major cities of the western world are terroists too stupid to make remote detonated bombs.

      Amen

    BF 3 providing a more realistic version of what wars are currently going on

    THE MIDDLE EAST!

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