Mapathy: are new maps enough for MW2 DLC?

Updated: We've added some of your comments to the article. Seems like it's split opinion. As per usual although, one theme is that a lot of people would like to see old COD 4 maps make a return...

Infinity Ward's promotional web page designed to tease their forthcoming DLC uses the pun Mapathy to describe the boredom players may be experiencing with many of the multiplayer maps in Modern Warfare 2. To use their cod-dictionary language, Mapathy is: "A state of indifference to the same old maps one has been playing for the last several months."

To be honest we're feeling some of that 'apathy' towards the announcement itself.

Last time round, when we got the original Modern Warfare's first and only DLC, The Variety Map Pack, Activision treated the launch as it might a new game announcement. We all went off to London, got treated to free beer and cakes and played the new maps in a sumptuous environment.

But the fact of the matter was that The Variety Map Pack was a bit weak; four maps, one of which was a reskinned version of an old COD 2 map (Carentan) and another a location ripped straight from the game (Broadcast). The only 'new' maps were Killhouse - a nightmarish enclosed warehouse that always led to skill-less three minute-long firefights and Creek, the one that everyone always voted against playing.

Above: How Killhouse usually pans out

It might seem trite to moan about something we don't have to buy if we don't want to and also to criticise something we actually bought ourselves last time round, but so what:

Isn't it about time DLC for Modern Warfare (and FPS in general) offered something more than just a few new multiplayer maps for our money?

To put this in context The Variety Map Pack (and the three DLC packs available for World at War) have all had a launch day 'price' of 800 points. As a comparison this will buy you Worms (full game) twice, Bomberman Live, Zombie Apocalypse (a brand new, ground-up developed XBLA game) and is only 400 points short of Trials HD and Battlefield 1943. Those four maps just started to sound a bit expensive, right? Oh, and did we mention PC players got them for free?

We'll find out later in the week what the price of the new MW2 DLC will be (we're guessing 800 points) and what it'll offer (umm, four maps anyone?) but in the meantime, rather than just complain, here's a few suggestions that we'd put forward for improved DLC:

  • Additional single player story arcs. Yes, that's right, what about a few side missions that use extended versions of the existing maps playing as different characters? Sure, this needs forward planning, but GTA IV managed it with some success.
  • The obvious one? Why not some more Special-Ops? Not just rehashed ones, brand new ones in new locations.
  • Additional game functionality. Like save your killstreak to a video and upload it automatically to Twitter, Facebook or YouTube?
  • Zombie mode. Yeah, we know. Infinity Ward HATE it when you bring this up. There's clearly a degree of hostility between the two developers and Inifnity Ward see this very much as Treyarch's 'thing' but for God sake, can't it see the potential in this? Zombie mode was huge! It would be as huge (if not HUGER) if we could play it with Modern Warfare's weapon set. Just stick it in as a new four player Spec-ops and no-one will complain. Go on.
  • Or, just offer us four maps. But at 200 points. Or even 100 points each.

There's nothing to say that in the second wave of DLC (out in the summer?) that IW will have had more time to work up some inventive content so there’s still potential to improve the situation in future downloads - and that's what this is all about. Modern Warfare 2 is ripe with potential for creative DLC, because, crucially people play it ALOT and are passionate about it. If we are going to be exploited, exploit us with cooler stuff.

What do you think? Will you be forking out the points for MW2's new maps? Do you buy DLC in general? Let us know in the usual forums of discussion and flaming Facebook, Twittter and below in the comments.

***Updated with your views***

Matt Guatch O'Neill: Too little, too late, the game's a shamble on LIVE.

Mark Breen: My brother and friend and I had a long discussion about how brilliant it would be if they brought back some, if not all of the COD 4 maps! I would gladly pay 20 euros for them

Terry Collins: borin why do they always put up multiplayer maps why not do sum single player campaigns and new weapons

Brian Russell: Yes I will buy them.

Kevin Leonard: I didn't even want them when I thought they were free.

@Philious no. they'd have to redo the whole thing from scratch and release it for free to get back any credibility

@paulruk new maps for MW2 is fine - Also like some old maps back

Modern Warfare 'Mapathy' DLC will be available on Xbox 360 on 30 March, with PS3 and PC versions following later.

March 10, 2010