Activision have finally released Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered [official site] by itself, no longer restricted to being an extra in an expensive edition of CoD: Infinite Warfare. Not that the revamp of 2007’s seminal Call of Duty 4 is much more affordable now it’s sold seperately, mind. If you want to relive the good old days, it’ll cost you £35. And extra for the multiplayer map pack, of course.
So! Call of Duty 4. The first game since Half-Life to have a huge impact on other first-person shooters [Update: I am reminded that something named ‘Halo’ happened?]. It was fast and exciting and often surprising, leaping from person to person and place to place. Its format inspired many imitators. Its multiplayer was hugely impactful too – you can thank it for the helping spread the irritating unlocks and progression tracks that still linger. I certainly enjoyed CoD 4 back in the day so I am glad it’s been spruced up. I absolutely will not buy it at this price.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered is £34.99/39,99€/$39.99 on Steam. Or, right now on sale, you can get it bundled with the regular edition of Infinite Warfare for £37.19/49,59€/$49.59. I still won’t go for that. Oh, and the CoD4 map pack which was free on PC (thanks to Nvidia sponsoring it) is paid DLC for us in Remastered.
Activision held Modern Warfare Remastered to ransom for eight months, making it available only in an expensive edition of an unpopular. Over those months, the playercount has fallen dramatically. When Call of Duty: WWII comes out in four months, even more players will vanish. I’m sure numbers will climb a little now MWR isn’t chained to Infinite Warfare but a large chunk of the game’s playerbase — and therefore its multiplayer lifespan — is already gone.
The bundling was such a greedy and unpleasant decision from Activision and their unbundling plan isn’t much better. Especially as the PlayStation 4 release came a month ago, thanks to one of those unpleasant platform exclusivity arrangements.
It is such a shame that Activision have muffed up the re-release of a fine game. What should’ve been exciting is mired in irritation.