Who would've thought that a relatively unknown PC World War II game sequel would've become Xbox 360's star launch game? Joanna Dark was left crying on the stairs like a drunk and rejected fat girl at a party, Gotham 3 was left up on bricks with its wheels for sale on eBay and the cute Kameo characters were marched off to the firing wall by Call of Duty 2's dominant officers. If you could get through CoD2's tedious potato-throwing training mission, one of world's best shooters and Xbox 360's star launch games greeted you on the other side.
It rocked. Even now, if you haven't played Call of Duty 2, you should. You can get it for dead cheap. It's all action, all war, all massive set pieces, all guns, explosions, drama, stuff blowing up and people screaming at you that they're about to die. It's as shocking and loud as war games can get. And, from what we've seen of it so far at our world-exclusive preview showing,
Call of Duty 3 carries on the same always-some-shit-going-off-somewhere style of the always-on superwar. Call of Duty 3 takes place during the events of the Normandy Breakout, the slow, painful, gradual movement of Allied troops from the D-Day landing sites in Northern France toward the eventual liberation of Paris from the sausage-loving warmongers. Almost 610,000 people died during this campaign. Where we might pop down there on the Eurostar in a couple of hours to drink too much Kronenbourg in Paris and ogle pretty French girls, granddad spent months trudging through a bombed-out, booby trapped series of hell holes watching his friends standing on landmines and getting run over by tanks.
Call of Duty 3 tells this harrowing story of four soldiers traipsing down the hellish route toward Paris. One American, a Brit, a Polish conscript and, for the first time, a Canadian, part of the heroic group of Canucks that landed on Juno beach on D-Day and managed to storm nine miles inland through the German defences on that first day of fighting on the Normandy coast.
The Polish guy is the hard man, part of the Polish Free Army, a rag-tag collection of escapees and freelance troops that returned to action voluntarily to bolster allied troops. CoD3 has been designed to offer one huge, seamless war experience that tells the plot from all four sides, eliminating loading screens, keeping you in the action and forcing you to decide what's going to happen next. What are you going to do? Decide now, or you'll die, that's the sort of immediate, one-balls-up-and-you're-dead real-life war vibe the makers are going for.
So instead of switching missions and locations, you're swapping characters, seeing the same battles unfold from four different sides as you progress and try not to get bits of your body blown off into the hedgerows. Call of Duty 3's maker Treyarch told us they're trying to get the feeling of a 1960s war film this time around, where one major battle is depicted from several points of view.
So instead of switching to the Polish guy fighting in Berlin, then back to the Brit on Sword beach, then the Yank cutting his way up the bloody and heavily defended Omaha Beach and then seeing someone else in, say, Russia, you now see the Breakout Campaign from four angles. Four different locations, but all in the same area and heading toward the same ultimate conclusion. No doubt it'll all come together at the end, they'll hug, realise that war is pointless and all share a nice cup of tea and thank the Americans for starting it, ending it and doing all the hard work and building all the tanks and aeroplanes (Hollywood version).