Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare differs from previous installments of the Call of Duty series. Previous Call of Duty games have a distinct three country-specific campaign style, while Call of Duty 4 has a more film-like plot with interlaced story lines from the perspectives of Sgt. Paul Jackson of the Marines 1st Force Recon and Sgt. 'Soap' MacTavish of the British 22nd SAS Regiment. There is also a variety of missions where players control other characters, such as an unidentified AC-130 gunship operator and Lieutenant John Price in a flashback assassination mission set in Pripyat, Ukraine. The move to modern warfare has introduced a variety of conventional weapons and technologies to the Call of Duty series, such as assault rifles, night vision, .50 caliber sniper rifles, and C4 plastic explosives.
For information on the game engine, see Infinity Ward Game Engine Mechanics.
In 2011, Khaled Al-Asad begins a coup in the Middle East, and Russia is in the midst of a civil war between the government and Ultranationalists. Meanwhile Gaz informs Captain John Price, leader of Bravo Team, that a new recruit to the SAS, Sergeant John "Soap" MacTavish, is joining their squad.
Soap arrives at the S.A.S. training facility in Credenhill, U.K, where he has a quick weapons training session with Gaz, meets Captain Price and the unit, and takes the CQB test to complete his initiation.
Bravo Team then proceed to the Bering Strait, to look for a suspected nuclear package on an Estonian freighter. After taking out the security detail the team find the package, but fire from enemy fast movers means they barely escape with the shipping manifest, which points to Al-Asad as the owner of the package.
To complete his revolution, Al-Asad executes the President of an unnamed Middle Eastern country, Yasir Al-Fulani.
Shortly after this, Soap, Gaz and Price rescue the Russian informant who supplied the intel on the cargoship operation, codenamed Nikolai, with the help of one of Price and Gaz's old friends, Sergeant Kamarov, and his Russian Loyalists.
Meanwhile, Al-Fulani's death has prompted 1st Force Recon to invade the Middle East to search for Al-Asad. A team consisting of Lieutenant Vasquez, Staff Sergeant Griggs, Sergeant Paul Jackson and others infiltrate a small town and clear the target building and later a TV station where they think Al-Asad is broadcasting propaganda, only to find that there's no sign of him and the broadcast is on a loop.
Meanwhile While the SAS is on their way out, the team's helicopter, Hammer 2-6, is shot down and they have to make their way across the fields, trying to evade enemies, searching for survivors but eventually openly engaging them. After reaching a barn, Soap takes a FIM-92 Stinger and shoots down the chopper chasing them. An AC-130H Spectre then arrives to support the SAS to the extraction point, first while they're on foot and later in civilian vehicles. After they reach the junkyard, friendly birds come in to get them.
The Marines head to rescue a downed M1A2 Abrams, callsign War Pig, from a bog, but heavy enemy fire prompts Jackson to destroy a ZPU-4 so air support can come in to mop up. The unit then form up defensive positions on the tank as engineers come in to fix it, and later escort it back to the highway. They clear the forward area, allowing War Pig to move up, and let the tank take some of the big targets. During this, Vasquez tells Griggs and his team to hold an area while he and Jackson complete the mission. At the end, they rendezvous with a CH-46 Sea Knight for evac.
At the climax of the invasion, the squad head to the capital city where they think Al-Asad has withdrawn to. After rescuing a pinned down advanced recon team, Vasuqez is informed that Al-Asad has a nuclear warhead in the area. They hasten to evacuate but the team's escort is shot down and they go back to save her. Having spent their time doing this, they do not escape in time and the nuclear bomb goes off, killing civilians, OpFor troops and 30,000 U.S. servicemen, including Vasquez and Jackson and may have included members of SEAL Team Six, who had just relayed info on the warhead. Griggs manages to escape, as he was not with the team during this.
At this point, Nikolai tells Price that Al-Asad may be at his safehouse in Azerbaijan. The S.A.S. then head there, clearing several buildings in the village before finding Al-Asad. Price then interrogates Al-Asad and discovers the nuclear package didn't belong to him when Al-Asad gets a call from the Russian Ultranationalist leader, Imran Zakhaev. Price then executes Al-Asad.
Price then tells the team of when, in 1996, he was a Lieutenant assigned under the command of Captain MacMillan, on a mission to assassinate Zakhaev, an Ultranationalist who was trading nuclear fuel rods for weapons. The duo make their way through the ghost town of Pripyat, Ukraine, in ghillie suits and using minimal engagement to stay undetected. Eventually they reach a hotel where they stay on the top floor for three days, until Zakhaev arrives.
When the meeting is underway, Price uses a Barrett .50cal sniper rifle to assassinate Zakhaev, blowing off his arm. The two then make their escape under pursuit from enemy helicopters, believing Zakhaev will die from shock and blood loss. While on their way to the extraction point, they take down a helicopter but it comes crashing towards them and injures MacMillan's leg. Price then carries him the rest of the way and they hold their ground, waiting for exfil.
Back in the present day, eight hours after the death of Al-Asad, the S.A.S. use charges, a crashed Blackhawk's minigun, and later a FGM-148 Javelin, to push back enemy forces until Griggs and the American Marines arrive in the Sea Knight "Gryphon Two-Seven."
With their target now shifted to Zakhaev, the actual owner of the WMD that killed the Marines in the Middle East, the S.A.S., U.S.M.C. and Russian Loyalists perform a joint operation to try and capture his son, Viktor Zakhaev, for information on his father's whereabouts. After a lengthy chase, the team corner him on the roof of a five-story building and Soap moves in to restrain him, however he shoots himself to evade capture.
Angered by his son's death, Zakhaev takes control of an ICBM launch facility in the Atlay Mountains and threatens to launch nukes at the U.S. in retaliation. Price then leads a joint British-American operation to stop this, but Griggs goes off course during the HALO and is captured. Soap, Gaz and Price then divert their course to rescue him before killing the power to the launch facility to allow Force Recon to breach the perimeter. Shortly after getting inside and linking up with Sniper Team Two, they witness two nuclear missiles being launched towards the U.S., with an estimated 41,096,749 casualties. The team therefore hasten inside and after taking out enemy armor with C4, cut the wire to the vents and get inside. After reaching the control room, Soap uses the abort codes sent by Baseplate, the team's command, to destroy the missiles in flight before they reach the Eastern Seaboard. Soap, Griggs and Price then rendezvous with Gaz at the vehicle depot, where they make their escape using Russian trucks.
With enemy vehicles and a Mi-24 Hind behind them, Soap, Gaz, Price, Griggs and the survivors head down the Russian motorway, but a bridge critical to their escape is destroyed and they scramble to make a desperate last stand against the Ultranationalists. However, an oil tanker soon explodes, incapacitating everyone but Griggs, who tries to drag Soap to safety but is killed in the process by Zakhaev's guards. Zakhaev himself eventually executes Gaz. A wounded Price slides Soap his M1911, with which the latter dramatically kills Zakhaev and his patrol. Kamarov and the loyalists soon arrive, where Soap is carried away on a stretcher and a medic begins to resuscitate Price, but the fate of the two is unknown. Meanwhile, a news reporter announces a series of nuclear missile tests in Russia, and that the search for a ship in the Bering Strait has been called off, showing the public do not know what has actually happened in the six-day crisis.
In the Epilogue, a bonus mission titled Mile High Club can be played. This follows One-One Team, whose assignment is to rescue a hostage from a plane. At the end, one of the members shoots the guard holding the HVI at gunpoint, and they discover the bomb has been armed, but they just manage to escape in time by freefalling from the plane.
- Credenhill, U.K.
- Somewhere near the Bering Strait
- Execution of Al-Fulani in Al Qunfudhah, Saudi Arabia
- Searching for Nikolai in the Caucasus Mountains, Russia
- Kuwait City, Kuwait
- Night time in Al Qunfudhah, Saudi Arabia
- Western Russia
- Inside an AC-130, Western Russia
- Day time in Al Qunfudhah, Saudi Arabia
- Basra, Iraq
- Crash site in Basra, Iraq
- Northern Azerbaijan
- Pripyat, Ukraine
- Assassination attempt of Imran Zakhaev in Pripyat, Ukraine
- Northern Azerbaijan, 8 hours after Al-Asad's death
- Southern Russia
- ICBM Facility, Altay Mountains, Russia
- Launch Facility, Altay Mountains Russia
- Inside the Launch Facility, Altay Mountains, Russia
- Escape from Altay Mountains, Russia
- Airbus A380
- Sergeant "Soap" MacTavish, 22nd SAS Regiment
- Paul Jackson, 1st Force Reconnaissance Co., U.S.M.C.
- Lt. Price, 22nd SAS Regiment
- An unnamed Task Force 141 Soldier ordered to rescue a hostage on a plane (possibly Sergeant "Soap" MacTavish, although this is not definite)
- An unnamed Thermal Imaging TV Operator aboard an AC-130H gunship
- Yasir Al-Fulani, president of an unknown Middle Eastern country
- Vladimir Makarov, 1st Horseman
- Khaled Al-Asad, 2nd Horseman
- Viktor Zakhaev, 3rd Horseman
- Imran Zakhaev, 4th Horseman
Non-playable Allied Characters
- Gaz, 22nd SAS Regiment
- Lieutenant Vasquez, 1st Force Reconnaissance Co., U.S.M.C.
- Staff Sergeant Griggs, 1st Force Reconnaissance Co., U.S.M.C.
- Sergeant Kamarov, Russian Loyalist
- Commander Duenas
- Private Griffen
- Sergeant Wallcroft
- Private West
- Private Massey
- Lieutenant Volker
- Private Roycewicz
- Captain Pelayo
- Keating, Captain Pelayo's gunner
- Captain MacMillan
- Anti Air Operator
The Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare trailer, which showed in-game footage, was released on April 28, 2007. In the background a speech is given in Russian: Template:Quote A voice at the end speaks the Russian translation of a quote by Sun Tzu, author of The Art of War: Template:Quote "Enemy forces sighted" and "American forces nearby" are also said in Arabic in the trailer.
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare features a new mode called "Hardcore." In Hardcore mode, health of all players is decreased from 100 to 30, the heads-up display is removed and friendly fire is enabled. Standard game modes such as Free-For-All, Team Deathmatch, Headquarters, and Search and Destroy are included in the Hardcore library.
There are currently 20 multiplayer maps in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare: Template:CoD4 Maps
For multiplayer, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare includes a class system which has five preset classes with default weapon load outs and perks assigned to them as well as allowing users to create five custom classes where the user can customize their weapon load out and three perks to assign to their character. The five default classes include Assault, Spec Ops, Light Machine Gunner, Demolitions, and Sniper class. Create a class is unlocked when the user gains enough Experience Points (XP) to become a Lance Corporal (level 4), earned by killing opponents. XP will also vary depending on the type of match the user is playing. Only three of the classes are available to a first time player; Demolitions and Sniper are unlocked as he/she gains more experience online and gains higher rank. The class system is different in offline multiplayer (split-screen on the consoles), where players instead pick from a set of 10 classes pre-made by Infinity Ward, two for each weapon type and each with a specific purpose demonstrated by its name. For example, there is a "Close Quarters" class with a P90 and Red Dot Sight, or a "Survivalist" class with an M60E4 and a Desert Eagle. Some classes are less useful due to the nature of offline games, for example the "Ghost" class (an MP5 with a Silencer and stealth perks) is not so useful due to the split-screen view allowing players to know where the others are anyway, or the "Point-man" and "Defender" classes (W1200 and M1014 respectively) due to the rarity of surprise close quarters encounters. The highest level is 55, which unlocks Prestige Mode in console versions. Players will be able to save and name custom classes for quick access in multiplayer matches. Most of the new weapons and perks are unlocked as through increasing experience ranks, but there are also a separate number of challenges associated with each weapon that will subsequently open up new add-on gear as they are completed.
Unlike previous Call of Duty games (with the exception of Call of Duty: United Offensive, Call of Duty: Big Red One and Call of Duty 3), Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare has a ranking system, which works on XP. The player gains XP by completing and winning matches (relies on the player's K/D) killing opponents (5-50 XP) and completing challenges(50+ XP). There are many ranks in Call of Duty 4, which roughly follow the US Marine Corps ranks, however there are a few exceptions. There are 55 ranks in total, each with its own insignia but when a player activates prestige mode; the insignia is the same for the whole of that prestige.
For more information on ranks and what is unlocked as the player goes through them, click here.
Another introduction in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare is the Perks system. Perks are special abilities which allow users to further customize their character to their personal play style. Each class can only have three different perks within three specific tiers.
Players have a choice of a primary weapon, a secondary weapon, and a special grenade.
- Primary weapon - Players can choose between assault rifles, submachine guns, light machine guns, shotguns, or sniper rifles. There are two to seven choices in each weapon type. After a player has picked a weapon, the player can also pick attachments and camouflage with which to modify the weapon.
- Secondary weapon - Players using the Overkill perk can choose a second primary weapon without the camouflage.
- Sidearm - These are pistols. Pistols can only be chosen if Overkill is not being used.
- Special grenades - There are three types of special grenades: flash, stun, and smoke.
Only one attachment can be used at a time. The game also includes customization of the weapons with camouflage. Woodland and desert as default options, and Digital, blue tiger, and red tiger after reaching 25, 75, and 150 headshots respectively. After getting red tiger camouflage with all guns in a class, the player unlocks a Golden camouflage for a weapon in that class. All of the attachments, and in some cases grenade launchers, are mounted on Picatinny rails.
There are six weapons that can equip the Golden Camouflage. It is acquired by completing all the challenges for their respective weapon class, except for the Gold Desert Eagle, which is achieved when rank 55 is reached. This has no beneficial features over other camouflages, beyond their exclusivity. The player can check their progress for each weapon by going to barracks, selecting Challenges and view the type of gun they are trying to get Gold Camouflage for.
- Gold Desert Eagle - Reach Rank 55
- M1014 - Complete all shotgun challenges (50 kills and 100 headshots for all shotguns).
- Dragunov - Complete all sniper rifle challenges (100 kills and 150 headshots with all Sniper rifles).
- Mini-Uzi - Complete all submachine gun challenges (150 kills and 150 headshots with all SMGs).
- AK-47 - Complete all assault rifle challenges (150 kills and 150 headshots with all assault rifles except the MP44, which only requires the headshots).
- M60E4 - Complete all light machine gun challenges (150 kills and 150 headshots with all LMGs).
- Radar - Requires three consecutive kills without dying. This modifier allows the player to see exactly where the opposing team's players are on the map unless they have UAV Jammer for perk 2. UAV also activates the (otherwise invisible) minimap in hardcore matches. May help get the next two kills, especially with a mounted machine gun.
- Airstrike - Requires five consecutive kills without dying. This modifier allows the player to call in a cluster bomb strike on the target of their choice. The player chooses the target by clicking on it in the map. The fighter jets, which fly overhead, will drop three cluster bombs, over a period of about 7 seconds. Enemies killed by an airstrike will, of course, count towards the user's kill count, which may grant the two additional kills needed to earn helicopter support. It is recommended to wait until a teammate calls in a UAV, so the player will be able to place an airstrike where a cluster of enemies are that may not be seen without a UAV active.
- Helicopter - Requires seven consecutive kills without dying. This modifier allows the player to call for helicopter support. The helicopter circles the map, firing at opposing team members whenever they come into view, and will leave after about 2 minutes if not destroyed by enemy gunfire. NOTE: Helicopter kills, like grenade launcher kills, will count toward the players total kill count in game, but will not contribute to the kill/headshot count for the gun he/she is currently using.
There can only be one airstrike and one helicopter airborne at a time.
Once earned, air support can be used instantly, or reserved for later in the game. However, if a player with available airstrike or helicopter support modifier dies and then gets three consecutive kills, he will retain his air support, and not get UAV recon.
The patch released in March 2008 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 fixed certain issues pertaining to the accuracy of the ACOG scope, certain small gameplay bugs and also introduced the host migration feature. However the host migration process has been heavily criticized outside of North America due to a biased QoS procedure. In essence, North American players are often chosen over players from other countries as the host due to a superior ping.
This lack of foresight by Infinity Ward has resulted in the monopolization of hosting by North American players and consequently severely hampered the online experience for players outside of North America. On March 4, 2008, Infinity Ward promised to fix this issue, but it remains unresolved. A patch has been released so that when a Host leaves, the game ends.
On April 4, 2008, Infinity Ward released the Variety Map Pack on the Xbox LIVE Marketplace. This package was subsequently released in the PlayStation Network Store. It includes four maps:
It costs 800 MS points from the LIVE Marketplace and originally cost $9.99 or £6.99 from the PlayStation Network. Thanks to sponsoring by Nvidia, the PC version of the map pack is included for free in the 1.6 patch. PS3 & Xbox 360 users in some markets are able to download the pack for free upon entering a code supplied with some 2008 game discs, in a limited offer which celebrates Call of Duty 4 receiving a "Game Of The Year" award. The PC version included one more exclusive map, called "Winter Crash", which is basically a winterized version of the original "Crash" map, with airstrikes dropping bombs that look like presents and the planes themselves sounding like sleighs, and in the background the player can hear Christmas songs, bells ringing and Santa Claus laughing.
The game was released as a Standard Version and a Collector's Edition. The Collector's Edition contains the standard retail game and a DVD containing a 167 minute documentary film entitled "Great SAS Missions," which consists of archive footage of the SAS in action and accounts from former SAS members. The DVD contains a "making of" feature and a level walkthrough by the developers. Also included is a limited edition poster and an exclusive hardcover art-book featuring never-before-seen concept, development, and final in-game artwork. These elements were packaged in a larger cardboard version of the standard retail box. The Collector's Edition was originally only available in the U.S., but was later released in other countries.
Call of Duty 4 was released for several consoles and Windows in North America on November 6, 2007, in Australia on November 7, 2007, and in Europe on November 9, 2007. The Mac OS X version of the game was developed by Aspyr and released on September 26, 2008. It was rated 15 by the BBFC, M for Mature by the ESRB, MA 15+ by the Office of Film and Literature Classification in Australia, 16+ by the PEGI, and 18 by the USK.
It was later released in a Game of the Year edition.
- The manual for the Xbox 360 version incorrectly states that the "use" button is (B) when it is actually (X).
- Call of Duty 4 was rated number 14 in Game Informer's Top 200 Games of All Time.
- Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare was banned in both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for cruelty and violence against Islamic soldiers.
- Originally the multiplayer featured only Marines and OpFor and was similar to Call of Duty 2 multiplayer.
- On early stages, the announcer would congratulate the player for promotion or completing a challenge.
- As seen on early multiplayer videos, United States Marine Corps and SAS had more real-life-like icons.
- Several cut quotes from the Multiplayer announcers prove that Call of Duty 4 was originally going to feature Capture the Flag and some other brand new modes.
- The game is featured in the film Kick-Ass. The titular character enters an apartment where Razul, a character he was asked to talk to, is playing split screen online with one of his friends.
- Call of Duty® 4: Modern Warfare™ at PlayStation.Com
- Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
- Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare on Steam
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