Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

Collier also shows the same dark building interiors without night vision, to show how another subtle visual effect is used to further convince the player that what you’re seeing is real. “When people move about in low-level light, the human eye can actually pick that up, unless it’s pitch black. Rim lighting is a faint outline of the characters in the darkness, so people can have fun in dark levels, without having to crank up the gamma settings on their monitor.”

To finish, we’re shown one of the most impressive first-person shooter weapons we’ve ever seen - a massive rocket launcher that, when picked up, allows you to electronically tag your distant target using the weapon’s HUD, then unleash a truly devastating explosion that rocks the environment and kills any living matter within the radius of the fire storm.

Call of Duty is back. Modern Warfare looks and feels like a Call of Duty game, but in today’s world, complete with blinding pace, terrifying weaponry and state-of-the-art technology. “You’ve got that intelligent squad surrounding you, you’ve got intense firefights where you might get pinned down or you might get flanked,” adds Collier. “We really want the player to teeter back and forth between feeling like you’re crushing these guys, to feeling like, ‘Oh my god, I’m so f***ed!’”

The pacing will also be much more varied than Call of Duty 2, where the action was ramped up to 11 for most of the levels. “You’ll be in Russia doing some spy-type stuff in camouflage suits, then you’ll head to the Middle East with squad warfare supported by helicopters, then become a gunner on an attack helicopter, then back to Russia protecting a defector from Zakhaev. CoD4 even has back-story missions where you go back 15 years in time for a Highlander-style flashback.”

With exciting multiplayer modes already well on the way and a single-player campaign that follows the same characters through big trademark action set-pieces in different locations, we’re excited. Team this with realistic lighting, AI, weapon ballistics, true physics, mo-cap animation and more gear such as tear gas and thermal goggles, and CoD4: Modern Warfare could condemn other shooter franchises stuck in WWII to the history books.

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