Ashwin Palepu

Ashwin Palepu

Ashwin is an industry expert primarily focused on Call of Duty and Fortnite, but a lover of all shooters. He enjoys focusing on the business side of esports as well as team profiles and game strategy. He is an avid programmer in his spare time. Discord @tagoonsquad

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Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) Multiplayer First Look: Thoughts and Recap

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In a precedent-defying limited gameplay stream today, the community got its first look at 2019’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Multiplayer. Twitch streamers CourageJD, TeePee, LEGIQN, and ProSyndicate played 5 iterations of a brand new 2 vs. 2 Multiplayer game mode called “Gunfight”. Today, we got a good look at the game engine, basic mechanics, and weapons. So let’s go ahead and hash through today’s demo.

The Gunfight Game Mode.

“Gunfight” is a 2 vs. 2 Online Multiplayer Game mode reminiscent of the “Face Off” game mode from Modern Warfare 3. Like Face Off, Gunfight utilizes smaller, arena-style maps. We saw 3 of these maps today:

  1. King – An indoor warehouse Firing-Range style map

  1. Stack – An outdoor container yard

3. Pine – A forested training yard with small opposing wooden platforms and some cargo containers.

Now here are the basic rules of Gunfight:

  1. There is no create-a-class. Instead the game randomly selects the same loadouts for all 4 players. These loadouts change every 2 rounds. There is also a looter version of the mode, where the player starts out with just a pistol and have to run around to find and equip various guns and equipment.
  2. This is not a respawn game-mode. When the timer starts, each team has 40 seconds to eliminate the other team. You also do not regenerate health unless your randomly assigned class is equipped with a stim-shot, which allows you to heal (it looks like this is the only application of a stim-shot in Multiplayer). A scoreboard will be displayed as a part of the HUD for each player, showing the total health of all the players on both teams (you can see how much health your enemy has). Each team starts out with 200 health (100 per player).
  3. If neither team has eliminated the other, a flag will appear in the middle of the map. Players will have 10 seconds to run to the flag and capture it (which takes 3 seconds).
  4. If neither team captures the flag in the allotted time, the team with the highest total health wins. If both teams have the same total health, the round ends in a draw and is replayed.
  5. While today’s streamers played to 10 rounds, it looks like in common practice, the first team to win 6 rounds wins the match.

According to CharlieIntel, Gunfight will also feature an “in-game tournament system from the ground up to support tournaments for the Gunfight mode. The new tournament system creates its own bracket after a select amount of teams join and builds a bracket out for players to compete in and advance to win the Gunfight tournament.” We do not know if Infinity Ward plans to incorporate this feature in their other modes.

Game Mechanics, Guns, and Equipment

First things first: there is obviously a new engine and it is obviously an improvement. All of the maps, sound design, colors, and animations are simply stunning. For the anti-motion blur fans, the game will also feature options to toggle motion-blur for both the gun and the world. This is despite it running on what looked like a standard PS4 that was stream-capped at 900p. So far, this looks to easily be the best-looking Call of Duty to date.

Moreover, while we did not get to take a look at the create-a-class system, we did get a chance to see the basic menu (pictured below) and it looks good – fairly simple, classy, and functional. The HUD is also rather simple and not too cluttered.

We also confirmed some of the guns that will be in the game, among which include: the M4A1, MP7, MP5, M14, AUG, AX-50 (Sniper Rifle), Model 680 Shotgun, Sawed-Off Shotgun Model 725 (a sidearm somehow, that’ll be fun), and the Desert Eagle (a 1-shot kill to the head which can be equipped with a scope as shown below) among others.

In terms of equipment, we saw a lot, including Molotovs, Grenades, Flashbangs, Proximity Mines, and our old friend: the Claymore.

The game also features assassinations or animated sequences for knife executions (warning: the linked clip is rather loud). Much of the Modern Warfare development team came back to Infinity Ward from Respawn Entertainment. Respawn’s Titanfall series also featured executions, including many that players could unlock. Hopefully Infinity Ward will bring a similar mechanic to Modern Warfare.

What We Don’t Know Yet

Firstly, while we saw some guns and attachments, we do not have an official comprehensive list of all guns and their available attachments. Moreover, we did not see any Scorestreaks/Killstreaks or perks.

The game will also still feature a mini map, per this leaked image, but whether that map is available just for UAV’s or for the entirety of the match is still unknown. We also still do not know the rest of Multiplayer game modes or how create-a-class will work. All of that will likely be announced on the August 1st full multiplayer reveal.

Final Thoughts and What Now?

The game looks good: sounds, colors, and animations are very crisp. The engine may just live up to the hype but we will have to examine load times and hit-registration during an online gameplay test.

The movement looks a tad clunky right now, but maybe that is because all of the Call of Duty games since Call of Duty: Ghosts has emphasized extra crisp movement. That being said, the movement gameplay most resembled Modern Warfare: Remastered, just with an additional slide mechanic.

The game also looks slower paced and more tactical than recent Call of Duty games. However, that feeling is mitigated with a slightly faster time-to-kill than Black Ops 4. People expected this; the team is making a concerted effort to return Call of Duty gameplay to the original Modern Warfare era. So far, it appears that they have done just that. This game looks like the one Infinity Ward promised: classic gameplay mixed with an ultra-modern engine.

So far this game looks rather intriguing, enough to warrant longing for more information. However, the community will now have to wait an excruciating 3 weeks before the full Multiplayer reveal on August 1st. In the meantime, we will commence the annual Call of Duty great hope. If you missed out, you can watch the VODs of any of the players who participated:

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