Get Task & Purpose in your inbox
One of the best 'Call of Duty' games ever made is getting a reboot
More than a decade after Activision's Infinity Ward launched Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, it still stands up. From the frenetic gunplay, to its compelling characters and expansive campaign, the 2007 first person shooter remains engaging and thoroughly enjoyable — hell, for old time's sake, I took a break from writing this just so I could hop on single player and insert onto a cargo ship where I laid waste to a bunch of hijackers and arms smugglers.
Come Oct. 25 players will no longer have to dust off their old consoles and deal with outdated graphics just so they can get some trigger time alongside iconic characters like Ghost, Soap McTavish, and Capt. Price, or put up with the recent string of CoD games and their over-the-top future tech, just to scratch that Team Deathmatch itch.
After two-and-a-half years of work, on May 30, Activision dropped its reveal trailer for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, a soft reboot of the original game. The two-minute long teaser features in-game footage, and a voiceover from actor Barry Sloane who states "we get dirty so that the world stays clean."
No stranger to playing operators, Sloane stars in History's Navy SEAL military drama SIX, and will appear in the upcoming game as Capt. Price, one of the franchise's most beloved characters.
Billed as a soft reboot, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare won't be a direct sequel to the events of the previous Modern Warfare games — which ended with the U.S. being invaded by Russia, and the world pretty much on the brink of total war, and subsequent annihilation. Instead, it's designed as a standalone with a recast of our favorite characters.
"Right off the bat, this is not Modern Warfare 4; this is not a sequel to those games," Taylor Kurosaki, the narrative director at Infinity Ward, said in an interview for Activision's blog."We had to put that storyline to bed, and we had to re-imagine what Modern Warfare could be."
The single-player campaign will feature a mix of different perspectives, just like the earlier versions in the saga, but with an eye toward modern-day conflicts and emerging threats.
"When you're playing alongside Tier 1 Operators, you get all of the best tech toys, right? You have NVGs, you have the best weapons, you have airstrikes; the whole military industrial complex behind you," Jacob Minkoff, Infinity Ward's single player design director told the blog. "But when you fight alongside rebels, you're the underdog; you're up against enemies that have superior technology to you. You have to use improvised munitions and weaponry like IEDs and molotovs, as well as your superior numbers, guerrilla tactics, and knowledge of the environment to get the drop on a more powerful enemy."
The reboot includes an overhauled game engine, and some new mechanics — at least compared to the original — like the ability to shoot through certain materials. Yes, you read that correctly, hiding behind a wooden crate won't keep you safe from incoming fire. However, based on an interview between Infinity Ward's campaign gameplay director, Jacob Minkoff and PCGamesN, the level of destruction won't rise to that of DICE's Battlefield franchise.
Other details about the game include news that it won't be offering a cooperative Zombie mode, not at launch, at least, but players will be able to take on campaign missions cooperatively.
As for the multiplayer features, since it's a Call of Duty game, you can be pretty damn sure we'll see some familiar game modes, and probably a comprehensive overhaul to the perk and weapon attachment system — though details on that remain scant.
What we know for sure, is that Call of Duty is following the lead of one its chief competitors, Battlefield, which did away with season passes and pay-to-play downloadable content with Battlefield V, and despite that game's many shortcomings, allowing players to buy a game once was its crowning achievement.
Someone at Activision clearly agreed, because Call of Duty: Modern Warfare won't require players to spend more money to get access to new game modes, maps, or in-game content. What's more, it will allow for crossplay between PC, Playstation, and Xbox players, according to Forbes.
That means you can stop cursing your buddies for buying the wrong console when Call of Duty: Modern Warfare arrives on Oct. 25.
WATCH NEXT: 'Call of Duty' Is Better Than 'Battlefield 4'
Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) will announce legislation Wednesday aiming to "fix" a new Trump administration citizenship policy that affects some children of U.S. service members stationed abroad.
The inside story of how The Village People shot the Navy's most controversial recruiting video onboard an active warship
The video opens innocently enough. A bell sounds as we gaze onto a U.S. Navy frigate, safely docked at port at Naval Base San Diego. A cadre of sailors, dressed in "crackerjack" style enlisted dress uniforms and hauling duffel bags over their shoulders, stride up a gangplank aboard the vessel. The officer on deck greets them with a blast of a boatswain's call. It could be the opening scene of a recruitment video for the greatest naval force on the planet.
Then the rhythmic clapping begins.
This is no recruitment video. It's 'In The Navy,' the legendary 1979 hit from disco queens The Village People, shot aboard the very real Knox-class USS Reasoner (FF-1063) frigate. And one of those five Navy sailors who strode up that gangplank during filming was Ronald Beck, at the time a legal yeoman and witness to one of the strangest collisions between the U.S. military and pop culture of the 20th century.
"They picked the ship and they picked us, I don't know why," Beck, who left the Navy in 1982, told Task & Purpose in a phone interview from his Texas home in October. "I was just lucky to be one of 'em picked."
Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Tuesday casually brushed aside the disturbing news that, holy shit, MORE THAN 100 ISIS FIGHTERS HAVE ESCAPED FROM JAIL.
In an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour, Esper essentially turned this fact into a positive, no doubt impressing public relations and political talking heads everywhere with some truly masterful spin.
"Of the 11,000 or so detainees that were imprisoned in northeast Syria, we've only had reports that a little more than a hundred have escaped," Esper said, adding that the Syrian Democratic Forces were continuing to guard prisons, and the Pentagon had not "seen this big prison break that we all expected."
Well, I feel better. How about you?
On Wednesday, the top U.S. envoy in charge of the global coalition to defeat ISIS said much the same, while adding another cherry on top: The United States has no idea where those 100+ fighters went.
A senior administration official told reporters on Wednesday the White House's understanding is that the SDF continues to keep the "vast majority" of ISIS fighters under "lock and key."
"It's obviously a fluid situation on the ground that we're monitoring closely," the official said, adding that released fighters will be "hunted down and recaptured." The official said it was Turkey's responsibility to do so.
President Trump expressed optimism on Wednesday about what was happening on the ground in northeast Syria, when he announced that a ceasefire between Turkey and the Kurds was expected to be made permanent.
"Turkey, Syria, and all forms of the Kurds have been fighting for centuries," Trump said. "We have done them a great service and we've done a great job for all of them — and now we're getting out."
The president boasted that the U.S.-brokered ceasefire had saved the lives of tens of thousands of Kurds "without spilling one drop of American blood."
Kade Kurita, the 20-year-old West Point cadet who had been missing since Friday evening, was found dead on Tuesday night, the U.S. Military Academy announced early Wednesday morning.
"We are grieving this loss and our thoughts and prayers go out to Cadet Kurita's family and friends," Lt. Gen. Darryl Williams, superintendent of West Point, said in the release.
The U.S. Army's Next Generation Squad Weapon effort looked a lot more possible this week as the three competing weapons firms displayed their prototype 6.8mm rifles and automatic rifles at the 2019 Association of the United States Army's annual meeting.
Just two months ago, the Army selected General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems inc., Textron Systems and Sig Sauer Inc. for the final phase of the NGSW effort — one of the service's top modernization priorities to replace the 5.56mm M4A1 carbine and the M249 squad automatic weapon in infantry and other close-combat units.
Army officials, as well as the companies in competition, have been guarded about specific details, but the end result will equip combat squads with weapons that fire a specially designed 6.8mm projectile, capable of penetrating enemy body armor at ranges well beyond the current M855A1 5.56mm round.
There have previously been glimpses of weapons from two firms, but this year's AUSA was the first time all three competitors displayed their prototype weapons, which are distinctly different from one another.