Alas! Over two years later, Modern Warfare 2 has finally been released. While World at War was decent, I really didn't care to play ANOTHER World War II game... so Modern Warfare 2's release was super exciting for me. This is my review.
Graphics: 4.75/5 I didn't think so at first, but looking back, it's plain and simple to see that Modern Warfare 2 just looks much better than the original. Everything about it is just sharper. The only real reason I am not giving this a perfect 5/5 is the simple fact that there seems to be a bit more lag online than there was in Modern Warfare 1. I'm not sure why this is, but I can hope it ONLY improves.
Sound: 5/5 Great, as all Call of Duty games are. The explosions, the guns, the dialogue, everything is basically perfect. The only tiny flaw I have with the sound is the same I had in the original - the online dialogue is repeated over and over again. Still, that's small potatoes compared to the game as a whole. Beautifully done, again.
Fun: 4.5/5 Not a perfect score!? Are you MAD, man!? Hear me out. While Modern Warfare 2 is an easy candidate for Game of the Year, the game is not completely perfect. While all the minor and bigger additions are nice, including custom kill streaks, new third person mode, titles and emblems, new weapons, etc., the game just could have had MORE of those minor things, including a character creation thing. While this may have kind of been a strange and maybe even unwelcome addition to the series, I can't help but think Infinity Ward is holding off until the NEXT Modern Warfare to add that feature just to say they added something new. Modern Warfare 2 is near perfect, but some of the additions just have me scratching my head. The first and biggest thing that comes to mind here is the heartbeat sensor, which just screams for campers. There is a perk to block yourself from being seen, but really there just aren't THAT many people running around with them... so really, I guess I should shut up. Next is the kill streaks. Ha ha ha, yes, all fine and cool that you can customize them, but the 11 kill streak AC-130 / Chopper Gunner option is just completely obnoxious. Every now and then you'll play a game with someone that got one of the two from either a Care Package or just has it as their 11th kill streak. While they seem very different, in the end their very similar, and end in the person using it adding 6 or more kills easily to their killstreak if they have any talent at all. This feature essentially ruins the game, especially Team Deathmatch.
Anyways, moving on, the maps in the game (as seen in a previous preview) are pretty good for the most part with a bit more variety than Modern Warfare 1. However, after playing all the maps, and seeing what was in Spec Ops and in the campaign, I have a sick feeling in my stomach that Infinity Ward plans on releasing Map Packs in the future for multiplayer that resemble or are identical to ones in those modes. If that's the case, I will feel cheated. I mean, yeah, I'll still buy them day one, but... eh. I'll just hope they don't plan on doing this. Although the thought of battling it out against terrorists in Washington D.C. or Pittsburgh sounds pretty tasty...
Overall, Modern Warfare 2 is a near perfect game with a few minor flaws. While it is a lot like the original, - shocker! - Infinity Ward knew they didn't have to change much and didn't... they essentially took the original and added a few small things here and there to make the game better, and succeeded for the most part in doing so, although some things aren't very welcome additions, in my opinion. I'm pretty confident this game will be Game of the Year... developers didn't push back the dates on their games until after November 10th or until next year - they know Modern Warfare 2 will dominate this 2009 season.
+: Improved graphics, same great online play, a few very minor but fun additions including emblems/titles, Spec Ops is great.
-: Nothing major has changed - I guess that could be a bad thing?, some weak maps online (Although that's inevitable, really I think.), overpowered perks.