Don’t tell me the ending to: CoD4
I know. I’m supposed to be playing Bioshock. But I picked up CoD4 for $37 recently and one of my friends wanted to know if he, too, should pick it up. Well, there is only one way to find out: I put the disc in and boot up the game on the hardest difficulty.
It is definitely worthy of the Game Of the Year Runner-up moniker…
One word: Achievements
It started with getting the first achievement: Beat the training mission in 20 seconds. Normally, it must be completed in 1 minute, with a recommended time of 30 seconds. 20 seconds, however, requires multiple attempts: prepping grenades as you bring the doorway into view, a timed reload, good accuracy.
After beating the training mission it recommends a difficulty. If under 20 seconds it will recommend the hardest difficulty: Veteran. Veteran is also the only difficulty to award achievements by beating levels.
I am roughly halfway through on Veteran difficulty and Call of Duty 4 is one of the more fun FPS experiences in recent memory. Its level of challenge separates it. Normally, I play on the default difficulty and believe that is the experience the developers intended. CoD4 makes it clear that the game is meant to be played on Veteran difficulty, and included the 3 previous difficulty settings as a way to work your way up to the brutality that is Veteran.
It does not hurt that I lead the board in the first few multiplayer matches due to the practice Veteran offers as you fight 10 enemies at once, each with nearly as much health as you, and far more accurate than your average XBL player. It plays much like a console version of Counter-Strike. It is certainly some of the best fun had online, but could be easily confused for a handful of similar modern FPS, both in look and in play style.
The non-Halo Controls are emphasized by the importance of ducking/prone bound to the B button, and the way Iron-sights work (like Gears, where you hold the Left Trigger to zoom down the barrel of your gun). It takes a little to get used to reloading with X again.
CoD4, however, cannot have splitscreen brought onto Xbox Live. Despite what the instruction book implies, you cannot seem to go from the splitscreen menu back to the XBL prep screen. This leaves Halo the LAN game of the year (up to 4 players per box, up to 16 total, any combination).