Call of Duty…It’s like riding a horribly violent bicycle.
Love it or hate you still probably play it. It’s freaking Call of Duty for God’s sakes. I’ve been playing Call of Duty since Call of Duty 2 hit the xbox back in 2006. I wasn’t a huge fan of Call of Duty 2 at the time because I was coming for the Rainbow Six: 3 and Ghost Recon’s school of thought and it just didn’t sit right. I skipped CoD 3 because G.R.A.W. (Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter) came out the same year and I was bawlz deep in that game for a long time…apparently I didn’t miss much, at least that’s what the people on the internet tell me. For me CoD 4 was where I got addicted to the gameplay and style that has defined a generation of FPSers. I played the CoD 4 Beta completely expecting to not like it, boy was I wrong. Ever since that Beta, 90% of my gaming time has been spent playing a CoD game. I took breaks to play some single player games but after a couple of weeks of not getting my CoD fix I found myself yearning for that sweet nectar that is the Call of Duty experience. With Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 less than a month away I figured I’d share some of my musing on Call of Duty.
To me, CoD is like a game of “pick-up basketball”, you get all your friends together and play a game against another group of people, be it your friends or anonymous competitors. Just like in basketball you have comradery, trash talk, strategy, competitiveness, and in my case, copious amounts of alcohol Gatorade. And each time a new CoD comes out it’s like playing that game of pick-up basketball on a new court. All the things that you need to play are there but little differences like court length, out of bounds, and 3-point lines might be different, but it’s still basketball. Granted, in a game of basketball you’re much less likely to have someone screaming about how they are going to rape you and your family…and possibly your dog.
CoD satisfies a number of things in my life, one being a social outlet. I play CoD to play with my friends, either real-life friends or friends that I’ve met though online gaming. I pretty much refuse to jump in a game without at least a couple of buddies. Besides, sitting around drinking by yourself seems way less of a problem if you’re doing while playing videogames. I don’t have a drinking problem I have videogame addiction…All of the aspects of going out and getting a drink with your buddies is there: trash talking, telling jokes that could get you fired or divorced, reminiscing about that sex thing you didn’t actually do with that hot girl that doesn’t exist, it’s all there. Sometimes you get so wrapped up with the social aspect you forget that team of prepubescent boys isn’t going beat themselves, giggidy. At this point, I can’t fathom trying to play this game or really any multiplayer game alone, it’s half the fun.
Another thing CoD satisfies for me is my competitiveness. I can’t get all my friends together to go play basketball everyday due to work and life in general, and also I think everyone would frown if I showed up to the gym in my underwear with a case of beer at 4 in the afternoon. But all of this can be done on a fairly regular basis in CoD, mainly the beer and underwear part. I get a great deal of satisfaction playing as a team and winning. Some people claim they play to have fun; well I have fun when I win. I don’t care if we beat a team of “pro” gamers or a team of wall-eyed grandmas with rheumatoid arthritis, we beat them and it feels good damnit! Maybe I like winning a little too much but you can blame that on the guys I game with, I have become accustomed to winning 99% of the games we play, sometimes we’ll go a full 2 weeks without losing a game. Now that I am done stroking my CoD, I will say that I can still have fun if we lose as long as I’m half way through a bottle of Gin or case of Shiner.
Basketball was created in 1891 and while it’s undergone changes in the last century it’s basically the same game it was back then. I love playing Call of Duty and at this point I can’t imagine not playing it.