WE weren’t playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2’s multiplayer for very long before someone used voice chat to tell us how bad we are.
The all too common sexist, racist and homophobic slurs were missing, but this is the general Call of Duty experience players have come to expect was there.
It’s what you expect, but with key components lacking.
PS5’s controller now has a microphone built in, making it easier than ever before for people to express their displeasure.
Luckily, it’s easy enough to put them on mute.
The voice chat is just part of the reason that CoD:MW2 is exactly what you expect.
It brings the visual upgrades to the original CoD:MW reboot, that you would expect when playing on the latest console.
If your monitor can handle it, you can even play at 120fps, but visuals and framerate aren’t the only things that make a shooter good.
The launch is fairly barebones. While the single-player campaign is one of the series’ best, the multiplayer is lacking.
There’s no hardcore mode or time-to-kill here, either. There’s no Combat Record to see your post-match states and no battle pass.
All these areas in the menus are just greyed out for the moment, with the studio promising to implement them in a future update.
The free-to-play CoD, Warzone 2.0, comes out later this month, and updates to the premium version are expected at the same time.
Despite this, it leaves you to wonder why we had to pay to play a game that is incomplete at launch.
Not everything is missing. There is the usual range of weapons, skins, and attachments, alongside special challenges where you can earn them.
There’s still plenty of content to aim your sights on, including levelling to 55 in order to earn the explosive Juggernaut Killstreak.
Ground War can hold up to 64 concurrent players in a map armed to the teeth with vehicles.
While the maps are smaller than the ones found in Battlefield, they are still fairly large and difficult to traverse on foot.
It strays a bit too far from the traditional gameplay style, and we think it may end up being a mode that is forgotten for more traditional ones.
Spec Ops has returned, and allows you and a friend to team up in a series of co-op missions.
They are set on familiar maps, but have preset waves of enemies to contend with.
Many of the smaller maps are fun to spend time in. In particular, Breenbergh Hill was a standout.
For dedicated CoD fans, the gun balancing feels good, though who knows how it will shape up in further updates.
Currently each weapon feels usable, all with their own strengths and weaknesses.
Bringing MW2 in line with the majority of modern shooters, there is now a third-person mode giving you more options when shooting.
Most will probably stick to first-person, as most choose CoD for that standard CoD gameplay, but it does have a purpose of making it more approachable to newer players.
Crossplay helps with team-finding, but console players do run the risk of coming up against mouse and keyboard players.
At the time of writing, you can only disable crossplay on PlayStation, leaving Xbox players the most vulnerable.
CoD:MW2 is a solid CoD game hampered by a lack of features players have become accustomed to.
It’s in dire need of updates to bring it up to the level of quality and diversity that previous entries offer.
While we can accept Hardcore mode coming at a later point, the lack of Combat Record makes it feel like a core component is missing.
It’s promising, but not impressive. It’s familiar in places, but lacking in others.
In a few months, it could be a great multiplayer shooter, but you may want to wait until after Warzone 2.0 releases to make that decision.
Written by Dave Aubrey and Georgina Young on behalf of GLHF.