Call of Duty 3 is one of the first titles released on Nintendo’s new Wii console. The new controller is put to full use with full control and action sequences in the game, but will the lack of any kind of multiplayer let the game down?
The follow-up to the #1 next-generation game, Call of Duty 3 delivers the intensity of being closer than ever to the fury of combat during the Normandy Breakout, the historic campaign that made the liberation of Paris possible and brought the Allies a step closer to Berlin. Through a seamless narrative that delivers the rush of unrelenting battle and breathtaking action, players assume the roles of four ordinary Allied soldiers—American, British, Canadian and Polish—and are thrust onto an authentic, living battlefield for an unprecedented variety of combat, with detailed character animations and explosive on-screen action, delivering the most immersive and cinematically intense war experience ever.
· The Power of Next-Gen – Built from the ground-up for next-gen consoles, Call of Duty 3 brings the battle to life with advanced graphics, a new physics engine, a procedural environment and detailed ensemble animations that deliver the most cinematic war experience ever.
· Battle Actions – An all-new close-quarters battle mechanic allows players to fight hand-to-hand, improvise explosive devices, disarm traps and execute a host of other battlefield situations that require cunning and rapid reflexes to survive.
· Branching Mission Paths – Next-generation level design provides multiple attack routes that let players decide how to confront the enemy – flank an opponent, or hit him head-on. Each unique mission path requires special tactics, from sniping and demolition to all-out head-on clashes.
· Nowhere to Hide – Environmental physics allow players to destroy enemy soft cover hideouts, forcing foes out in the open. But be wary, opponents can eliminate your protective cover as well.
The Story & Gameplaty
Call of Duty 3 takes place in 1944 during the Normandy Breakout. Once you have landed on the beaches of France the focus was to get the Germans out of France where parts were under Nazi control. Once again like the last game, you take part in various roles in campaigns for America, Britain, Canada and Poland. Each campaign has different settings and differing storylines, unfortunately I can’t say the story was that great and you didn’t really feel for your fellow troops like you did in the previous game.
The game begins with the usual training mission, though this time it is extremely short and not really work being part of the game, it is quite a shame that the game doesn’t help the user out a bit more with the controls as getting used to playing a first person shooter with the Wii controllers is very hard to begin with. Mission objectives in Call of Duty 3 are not really any different from most other games, sometimes you are required to get to certain places, sometimes rescue hostages or plant bombs. There was quite a cool addition though where you use your binoculars to mark targets for an air strike; it was a fun feature that really added to the feeling of the war taking place.
Movement is controlled with the analog stick on the Wii’s nunchuck, you look around the screen by pointing the Wii remote at the screen and moving around. Moving your reticle around the screen affects your aim, moving to the edges of the screen moves it up, down, left or right. You fire with the B button but for more precise aiming you press and hold A which moves you to eye level with the gun.
Once again I am pleased to say that they have done a great job with the single player side of the game. It is a lot of fun to play, although it does show itself off to be very linear most of the time. The action is still very cool though, especially with some of the set pieces in the game. The game has hyped up how the environment can be damaged, the problem here is that this only seems to happen in set pieces and it’s always damaged in the same way over and over again. It looks great once, but it’s nothing that hasn’t been done in other games already.
The game is, as I have mentioned, full of action, right from the start. The controls are basically the same as before although you will be called into close combat action sequences now and again in which you must do certain moves while fighting a Nazi or rowing a boat. These break up some of the fighting, but they can also be annoying, especially the boat scene which requires you to spin the right thumbstick half way around again and again, this not only causes hand pain, it also doesn’t work as well as it should do. They have also added the ability to drive jeeps, boats and motorcycles, but there isn’t a great deal to say about these as driving full speed will on a set route will get you past any problems on the roads.
Another niggle I have is that while the cutscenes are great to watch the first time (although sadly not in-engine) , if you die and start from the beginning of a level, you HAVE to sit through them again as you can’t skip them, whoever thought this was a good idea should have been included in the game so I could have shot them.
The biggest let down in the Wii version of Call of Duty 3 is that is lacks any kind of multiplayer option, while this is understandable due to the fact that the Wii currently doesn’t have any online gaming system up and running, it does lower the value of the Wii version of the game compared to others like the Xbox 360 version that is the same price.
Graphically the game looks ok, but if you are comparing it to the Xbox 360 version it will be a massive step down for most high-definition players, you get to see more detail on troops and enemies thanks to the NASA scanning technology that has been used, this is really where the main update has taken place. There are also extras such as falling leaves from trees, moving grass and flowers too, but overall this isn’t a great step up from before. Sound though is decent enough, especially when you can hear the bullets flying around and explosions vibrating your house! The only bad thing is that once again the accents are not too hot, especially the British ones.
Overall it is once again a game that has some fantastic production values and some great action sequences, but the control method with the Wiimote and the Nunchuck is very fiddly. Single player mode is good and a slight improvement over Call of Duty 2, but it does have the needless niggles that should never have surfaced. So it is really a great action game, let down by the lack of multiplayer and some fiddly controls due to the lack of decent training missions.