Call of Duty (video game)
|Call of Duty|
|Developer(s)||Infinity Ward (PC, Mac, XBLA, PSN)
|Series||Call of Duty|
|Engine||id Tech 3
|Distribution||Optical disc, download|
Call of Duty is a 2003 first-person shooter video game developed by Infinity Ward and published by Activision. The game simulates the infantry and combined arms warfare of World War II. The game is based on the Quake III: Team Arena engine. It was accompanied in September 2004 by an expansion pack, Call of Duty: United Offensive, which was produced by Activision, and developed by Gray Matter Interactive, with contributions from Pi Studios. Call of Duty is similar in theme and gameplay to Medal of Honor, as it is made out of single-player campaigns and missions. However, unlike Medal of Honor, the war is seen not just from the viewpoint of an American soldier but also from the viewpoint of British, Canadian, and Soviet soldiers.
The game was somewhat unusual at the time in that throughout the single-player mode the player is joined by computer-controlled allies who range in quantity from two infantrymen (in some of the British missions) to an entire regiment of tanks (in the Soviet missions). The computer-controlled allies will support the actual player during the missions. They also further the game's goal of providing an immersive and realistic experience; that is, soldiers in World War II were usually part of a larger group, as opposed to the "lone wolf" seen in video games such as Medal of Honor. However, there are some missions where the player is alone.
The "Hardened" and "Prestige" editions of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, released on November 10, 2009, includes a redemption code to download the game onto Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 hard drives, retitling it as Call of Duty Classic.
As a first-person shooter, Call of Duty places the player in control of an infantry soldier who makes use of various authentic World War II firearms in combat. Each mission features a series of objectives which are marked on the heads-up display's compass; the player must complete all objectives to advance to the next mission. The player can save and load at any time, rather than the checkpoint system utilized in later Call of Duty games.
The player has two primary weapon slots, a handgun slot and can carry up to ten grenades (all of the later Call of Duty games feature only two weapon slots; a sidearm will fill one of these slots). Weapons may be exchanged with those found on the battlefield dropped by dead soldiers. Unlike later Call of Duty games, the first allows the player to toggle between different firing modes (single shot or automatic fire). Call of Duty was one of the early first-person shooters to feature iron sights in game play; by pressing the corresponding key the player aims down the actual sights on the gun for increased accuracy. In addition to weapons carried by the player, mounted machine guns and other fixed weapon emplacements are controllable by the player.
The game uses a standard health points system, with a limited amount of health reflected by a health bar. Medkits scattered throughout the levels or dropped by some foes are used to restore health when the player is injured. This contrasts with all subsequent Call of Duty games in which there is no health bar and the player's health recharges when not taking fire.
Call of Duty also featured "shellshock" (not to be confused with the psychological condition of the same name): when there is an explosion near the player, he momentarily experiences simulated tinnitus, appropriate sound "muffling" effects, blurred vision, and also results in the player slowing down, unable to sprint.
As the focus of the game is on simulation of the actual battlefield, the gameplay differs from many single-player shooters of the time. The player moves in conjunction with allied soldiers rather than alone; allied soldiers will assist the player in defeating enemy soldiers and advancing but the player is given charge of completing certain objectives. The game places heavy emphasis on usage of cover, suppressive fire, and grenades. AI-controlled soldiers will take cover behind walls, barricades, and other obstacles when available.
The American campaign begins with Private Joe Martin, member of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, training at Camp Toccoa in Georgia, United States on 9 August 1942. This is meant to familiarize the player with the game controls. The first mission occurs toward midnight on June 5, 1944, as part of the airborne operations which began the invasion of Normandy. Martin is inserted outside the town of Sainte-Mère-Église as a pathfinder to lay a drop zone beacon for other paratroopers. The paratrooper drops end up being scattered, leaving Martin in a mixed unit formed from various companies. This mixed unit clears nearby farmhouses of German soldiers. The following mission has the group capture Sainte-Mère-Église and disable several Flakpanzers (anti-aircraft tanks) just at the beginning of June 6 (D-Day). A paratrooper is seen hanging from the town church (see Private John Steele). The third mission occurs later that morning, with the U.S. troops holding Sainte-Mère-Église from German counterattack. The fourth mission has Martin, along with Pvt. Elder and Sgt. Moody, driving from Sainte-Mère-Église to Sainte-Marie-du-Mont along highway N13, while fending off German assaults. The fifth mission is the Brécourt Manor Assault, still on June 6, in which the U.S. troops destroy German artillery at the manor, which has been hindering progress at Utah Beach. After this mission, it is revealed that Martin's unit will be detached from the 101st Airborne Division for special missions behind enemy lines, due to outstanding performance.
In the next mission, on 7 August, Martin and his unit assault a château in the Bavarian Alps of Austria to rescue two British officers (Captain Price and Major Ingram). However, Major Ingram has been moved to another location. The seventh mission, on 18 September, requires the unit to free Major Ingram from a prisoner camp, Dulag III-A, outside of Strasshof, Austria. This mission is timed, requiring the player to break the officer free and return to the escape truck within 10 minutes, before the Germans can arrive with reinforcements.
In the final mission, Martin's unit takes part in the Battle of the Bulge as they secure documents from German bunkers and destroy two Panzer tanks with captured artillery positions.
The first mission of the British campaign has Sergeant Jack Evans and a unit from the 2nd Ox and Bucks of the 6th Airborne Division take part in Operation Tonga. Just after midnight on 6 June 1944, the unit is dropped from Horsa gliders alongside the Caen Canal near Pegasus Bridge, Bénouville. They capture the bridge and defend it from the nearby German forces. Captain Price participates in this operation and several other missions as the commanding officer, although most of these missions occur before his rescue. In the next mission, just past noon of the same day, the unit protects the bridge from German counterattack, which includes several tanks. They hold the bridge until reinforcements from the 7th Parachute Battalion arrive.
The third mission, on 2 September, has Evans working alone, now with the Special Air Service or SAS. He is inserted next to the Eder Dam and destroys the anti-aircraft guns protecting it. During Operation Chastise the previous May, the No. 617 Squadron RAF destroyed the dam using bouncing bombs. However, the Germans had rebuilt it. The British Special Operations Executive wish to destroy it again to hinder German production in the Ruhr Valley. Evans also destroys the electrical generators in case the dam is not destroyed by the bombs. Evans escapes on a German lorry stolen by Captain Price and Sergeant Waters. During the fourth mission, the three men drive to an airfield while evading motorized patrols. Panzerfausts found on the lorry can be used to destroy the enemy vehicles. The next mission occurs at the airfield, with Evans shooting down several Stuka dive bombers. The men escape in a stolen FW-200 Condor. The sixth mission, on 27 October, occurs on the German battleship Tirpitz, near Tromsø, Norway. Evans and Captain Price board the ship in disguise, using forged papers. Evans plants explosives and retrieves the ship's patrol logs and documents indicating the fleet movements of the Kriegsmarine (the German navy), with Captain Price being killed or captured in this mission.
The first Soviet mission occurs during the Battle of Stalingrad, on 18 September 1942. Corporal Alexei Ivanovich Voronin is on one of many barges transporting Soviet soldiers across the Volga River, many of which are destroyed on the way by German artillery or Luftwaffe aircraft. Once across, Voronin is unarmed and must avoid machine gun fire and find an experienced sniper to help him. Soviet artillery eventually clears out the German machine guns, allowing Voronin and the others to enter Red Square. The second mission begins in Red Square with many retreating Soviet soldiers being killed by fellow Soviets (see Joseph Stalin's Order No. 227—"Not one step back!"). Voronin helps capture the square, which is defended by two tanks and some machine guns. After killing the German officers who have been calling reinforcements, Soviet artillery destroys the tanks. The unit makes their way through the rubble-filled streets to a railway station. In the next mission, Voronin travels through the train station and part of the city to reach Major Zubov of the 13th Guards Rifle Division. Following this, Voronin is promoted to Junior Sergeant. The fourth mission, on 9 November, has Voronin moving through the sewers to avoid snipers, making his way to an apartment building recently captured by the Germans. The fifth mission has the unit, under the command of Sergeant Pavlov, capture and defend the apartment building (see Pavlov's House). First, Voronin acts as a counter-sniper while another soldier draws the fire of the snipers in the building; the unit then clears the building of Germans, and defends it from the German counterattack.
The sixth mission occurs much later, on 17 January 1945, with Voronin promoted to full Sergeant, and now part of the 150th Rifle Division of the 3rd Shock Army. The unit secures a German tank repair facility in Warsaw in the midst of the Vistula–Oder Offensive. The next mission takes place just after securing the facility, with the unit making their way to the outskirts of the factories to regroup with the 4th Guards Tank Army. Due to shortages in experienced soldiers, the eighth mission, on 26 January, requires Voronin to command a T-34-85 tank for the 2nd Guards Tank Army. Along with other tanks, he makes his way toward a town near the Oder River. The ninth mission is also fought in the tank, with Voronin destroying some anti-aircraft weapons and securing the town.
In the final mission, on 30 April 1945, Sergeant Voronin is returned to the 150th Rifle Division. His unit battles in Berlin to reach the Reichstag building, and they raise the Victory Banner atop the building.
Call of Duty received critical acclaim from many video game publications. It won several "Game of the Year" awards for 2003 from several reviewers. It was the recipient of the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences 2004 "Game of the Year" award, defeating games including Command & Conquer: Generals, Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne, Postal 2, and Rise of Nations. The game also received "Computer Game of the Year" and "Computer First Person Action Game of the Year", and was nominated for "Outstanding Innovation in Computer Gaming", "Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composition", and "Outstanding Achievement in Sound Design" in the Interactive Achievement Awards.
It was also nominated for "Best Game" at the 2004 Game Developers Choice Awards. While it did not receive that award, it did win Infinity Ward the "Rookie Studio of the Year". Chuck Russom was also presented with the "Excellence in Audio" award for his work on the game.
Review website IGN rated the game 9.3/10, with reviewer Dan Adams saying "You have to love a game that glues you to your seat and keeps you interested... A thrilling piece of software that action fans should grab a hold of and love fiercely." His only negative critique was on the short length of the game, which many reviewers pointed out.
Call of Duty spawned numerous spinoffs and sequels, all considered a part of the Call of Duty series. Its expansion pack - Call of Duty: United Offensive was developed by Gray Matter Interactive and released September 14, 2004. Call of Duty 2 was also developed by Infinity Ward and was released in October 2005. Some Call of Duty spinoffs were developed exclusively for consoles, such as Call of Duty: Finest Hour by Spark Unlimited and Call of Duty 2: Big Red One by Gray Matter Interactive (now Treyarch). Call of Duty 3, the first sequel to appear on consoles only, was released in November 2006 and developed by Treyarch and Pi Studios. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, developed by Infinity Ward, was released for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 Macintosh and the PC. A Wii version was developed by Treyarch, called Call of Duty: Modern Warfare: Reflex. A handheld version was also produced for the Nintendo DS. Another handheld game, Call of Duty: Roads to Victory was released March 14, 2007 for the PlayStation Portable, the N-Gage, and the Pocket PC. On December 3, 2007 it was announced that Call of Duty: World at War would be developed by Treyarch. It was released November 11, 2008 in the U.S. for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii and the PC, and on November 14, 2008 in Europe. A sequel to Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare called Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was released worldwide on November 10, 2009 for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. Much like Infinity Ward before them, Treyarch has left the World War II battlefield and now heads into the Cold War era, which includes the controversial war in Vietnam, titled Call of Duty: Black Ops, which was released on November 9, 2010. A sequel to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 called Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 was released November 8, 2011. It was released for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, Wii, and the Nintendo DS handheld. A sequel to Call of Duty: Black Ops, Call of Duty: Black Ops II, was released on November 13, 2012 for Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3. And the Wii U version was released on November 18, 2012. A new entry in the series called Call of Duty: Ghosts was released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Wii U, and Xbox 360 on November 5, 2013. Ghosts is also the first Call of Duty game available on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, as launch titles for both consoles on November 15, 2013 and November 22, 2013 respectively.
Call of Duty Classic is a downloadable version of Call of Duty for Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network, featuring HD resolutions. Tokens to download the game ahead of its release were sold along with special "Hardened" and "Prestige" editions of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and the game was publicly released on December 2, 2009.
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- Call of Duty Classic Review – Xbox 360 Review at IGN
|Awards and achievements|
|BAVGA Award for Best Game