Why Is Anybody Still Playing CoD?

Over the years, I’ve built up a mental list of stuff that I struggle to understand why any sane human being would enjoy: Those awful spoof movies, the music of Razorlight, the comedy of Lee Evans, and, lately, Call of Duty.

In the interests of full disclosure I should point out that I’ve not played any of the games in the series in any great depth – a few deathmatches here and there, and the odd round of Nazi zombies (which I do get). But anyone with an interest in gaming – hell, anyone sentient – will have picked up on just how much this series has consumed the entertainment industry and the free time of at least one generation.

The question is – why?

From what I’ve picked up online, in magazines and (gasp) real life, the people who play MW2 have put me off ever exploring it fully:

1. Kids

I’m a teacher by trade, and I’m hard pushed to find a boy at my school who doesn’t play MW2, despite the fact that not a single one of them is entitled to play this game, intended as it is for adults. Aside from the legal and moral implications – why are parents buying it for their kids? Don’t they look at the cover? It has ‘war’ in the freakin’ title! – this means that gamers have to face a gang of unruly brats in the online arena. Great if you’re taking them down, less fun when you’re getting teabagged by an 8-year old. Not that that’s ever happened to me.

2. Glitches

There are scores of YouTube videos available for players who want to exploit the game, either to gain ranks or to simply grief other players. Sure, there are patches, and Microsoft and Sony can ban cheats, but this only slows the process rather than dealing with it. The thrill of doing something they shouldn’t and the threat of getting caught just keep them coming back. They’re probably getting more play out of the game through trying to break it than legit players are from any amount of DLC.

3. Activision

Gaming’s latest archvillains hiked up the price for MW2 just because they could, and now there’s rumblings of a subscription model. While people who shop around rarely pay the recommended retail price (at least in the UK), such bare-faced greed was pretty repulsive. Add to that the insistence on releasing yearly iterations of the franchise (though Black Ops might be a step forward for Treyarch) and the sacking of key staff for daring to investigate other publishers, and some people are left questioning whether they should even support the series.

4. Bad Company 2

I’m not a military man, so BC2’s not high on my wishlist either – but even so, it just looks more fun. Destruction! Vehicles! Character Classes! Opponents who aren’t still wearing Spongebob pyjamas! Plus, it’s still got all the leveling goodness we’ve come to expect from a good multiplayer.

I’ve not said anything here about the single player and co-op games, simply because there’s nothing to say. They look excellent. And the original MW has done a lot to create the modern multi-player climate. But everything seems to point to a flawed and frustrating online experience, and I’m wondering why people persevere? I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter.

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  • While all of that might be true, FPS comes down to one thing: shooting.

    Say what you want about everything else about the game, no other FPS on the market can beat CoD when it comes to first-person shooting mechanics.

    The only legitimately off-putting part of the CoD “experience” is the community is full of awful people. Myself, included.

    Side-note, Bad Company 2 is a fine game, but, I firmly believe that its for people who want to act like MW2 isn’t as good of a shooter as it is.

    • ArmA 2 shits all over Call of Duty and Modern Warfare 2 in the shooting mechanic.

    • SomeGuy

      CoD shooting mechanics aren’t great. Even the recoil is glued on. If you look at your gun it doesn’t wobble it makes small direct moves up down and sides.

      And to the defense of BF:BC I has to say it is a better FPS than CoD:MW2.

      But you are right teh community is awful. And the games has been broken most of the time since it has been relased and there is no fix coming seeing that most of the original developers left and it takes time for the new people get how to fix the game.

  • I’ve never been a hardcore fan of FPS. They can be a good laugh when played with frieds, but I don’t understand people who play the games close to 24/7

    As for your 1st point abouts kids playing these games, I think I made my views perfectly clear on my own article(Its a cheap plug but it’s sort of related)

  • RomperStomper09

    No wonder you dont like all those things, you are a teacher, in other words a boring fucker

    • Mykarate

      Wow, someone had an unpleasant experience in the classroom as a child. You know why teachers are boring? WE’RE TOO BUSY RAISING YOUR CHILDREN..I mean, sure, buying this game for a 10 year old seems like a good idea right? Might as well learn now at such an impressionable age when they’re just full of rational understanding, what it’s like to walk through a mall and mow down civilians.

      To each household, their own, but our insensitivity to violence is a little…disturbing.

  • Peter Bradley



    The only thing about this article I DON’T agree with is your bemusement regarding Lee Evans. Honestly, that man is unbelievably funny in concert. LOL funny ’til it hurts!

  • The reason MW2 is so good is because it is mindless fun. It is even better with alcohol involved.

  • Tadow

    I’m sick of games getting berated just because they’re overwhelmingly popular. It happened with Halo and now its happening with Call of Duty. They’re popular franchises because they’re great games, end of story.

    • Dtoxz

      Yeah the COD series is popular because they HAVE good games, but MW2 is popular because MW1 was a GREAT game.
      MW2 is so full of bullshit that the cover should have been dark brown. Between the UMP/silencer/stopping power combo, to the noobtube/danger close/scavenger combo. the game itself is just full of shit. thats not even counting all the glitches and the lag….oh the lag.
      what about the assholes that pick marathon/lightweight/commando and run around and knife people? like people do that in a real war. there is no point to playing as a team because of the nuke. killstreaks force people to to camp and to play alone, not as a team. you try and try and try to plant the bomb and finally when you do, that asshole that is spawn camping the whole time calls in the nuke. thats retarded. everyone looks at k/d ratio but you cant even go by that. there have been OVER 100 times where I have spawned and died in this game. maybe if IW beta tested this game instead of getting cocky and saying this is their best game ever, it COULD HAVE BEEN their best game ever. But coulda, shoulda, woulda…..
      There’s always next year I guess.

      • Nick

        I guess your a Cleveland sports fan then!

        “Theres always next year.”
        “Maybe next year.”


        • Chris

          No, I’m a Call of Duty fan. I don’t like sports. Unless you count smoking pot and playing video games.

  • Chad

    To each his own. Like everything else in life you’ll find people that like and dislike it for they’re own personal reasons. In order to truly understand why somebody might like this game, you need to let yourself open up to them and to the game itself. I hate to assume, but it sounds like you really haven’t thought about it at all. In fact what this article really just looks like is a article who’s sole purpose is to bring people to your site.


  • guest

    the problem with mwf 2 is the fact that they had shotguns as your secondary. if that wasn’t bad enough lets have dual wield sawed off shotguns where as in the title MODERN WARFARE the guys wrist would fuckin break. lets go on a little rant about the killstreaks far too many of them. cod 4 had it right with just 3. even 5 for max would of been fine, have the uav, predator, airstrike, hell ac130/chopper gunner and nuke. and the airstrike would be the old ones not that harrier shit. point is the game has far too much bullshit in it.

  • You don’t understand, because your a teacher! LOL just joking!

    I remember all of my teachers back in my old high school days either hated or didn’t understand video games in general! So You must be an awesome teacher to have, to even be into gaming at all!

  • kirby145

    1. It’s just a video game, who cares who is playing it.

    2. MW2 is a crap game. Out of all the CoD is has probably been the most thoroughly hacked and glitched.
    IW failed hard on this one and that’s all there is to it.

    3. The price in the U.S. is MSRP $60. However Amazon sells anything on preorder for about $40 since you get $20 gaming credit (which repeats in a cycle with every new game you buy). Noone can increase the price here as noone would pay it. However people will pay an extra ~$100 for limited edition stuff like posters and helmets so that’s a fair thing for publishers to look into for profit.

    4. Bad Company 2 is more fun than MW2 in my opinion. Not better than COD4, not better than CoD5: waw, for when they were released.

    I think what you should know is that the CoD series is great. But MW2 is not. And the publisher IW is dead anyway.

    CoD7: Black Ops will take MW2’s engine, reskin it in a different time, and hopefully fix all the stupid problems IW created. I’ll put it this way: Treyarch can not possibly do worse with the MW2 engine. It’s going to be a good game from what I can tell.

  • DonabateGuy

    I play it cos its easy to jump into a game with friends, and most of my friends have it and none of the others. I would/do play most games over it.

  • Mark Withers. (MarkWithers)

    great article. COD is the EA Sports FPS i.e. different year, same crap. Annual iteration with a few bolt ons.

  • Josh

    I played only SP with the other COD games. My buddy talked me into playing MW2 online..It was very frustrating..the glitches and the kids are annoying. I personally would rather play BC2, but for the fact that most of my family bought MW2 to play online with each other I just stuck with it. Now when I play online I mute everyone with a mic, it certainly does make it more peacefull. As far as Activision goes I have a bad taste in my mouth with them lately, I refuse to pay for the map packs. I would say I could take that money and buy BC2, but I would need 2 copies and then every other families household would need 2 copies. I still play for the social aspect with the family and friends. I did level to 70 but I have no interest in prestige.

  • Stubacca

    Some great points there. I think MW2 is a great game and one of the best FPS available. I’d rather play BC2, MAG or Killzone 2 to be honest.

    The best thing about MW2, and the reason everyone still plays it?


  • Blake

    Why do people still play? Because some people think it is still fun.

    Anyway, some interesting things to point out. I have found out that only people who are somewhat good at the game are still playing. All the people on my friends list that have a 1.0 KD ratio or lower havent played in months. But the people that are 1.5 KD or over still play this constantly. What does this prove? Games are only fun if you are good at them. No one likes to be killed constantly. But the people that can hold their own, will still be playing this well into next year. Its just how it goes.

    Thats not saying, that this is true for everyone. Im sure some people who are good dont play and some who suck still do play.

    But I am going to go out on a limb here and say the author of this article sucks big balls at the game.

  • Your Brother :)

    I only play when my friends feel like getting on. Other than that, you will never see me play MW2

  • C-LOVE

    the article is horrible we play it cuz we like it, how hard is that to grasp way to start a bitch fest of mw2 and bf2, y dont u just mention that kinect is over priced and the sony move is going to dominate, while were at it 3d is never gonna get on for another 10 years when theres better innovation and cheaper prices we only have so much MONEY!!!

  • I’m 30, married, with a good career, and I love playing CoD:MW2. The reason I play it is because it has great shooting mechanics, consistent 60FPS and fast paced gameplay, a large and active online community, constant bug fixes, updates and new maps, and possibly the best FPS controls of any console shooter on the market. After I went through BF:BC2 and got to 50 online, I played Red Dead, then Alan Wake, only to come right back to MW2. I’ve just hit the prestige button for the 3rd time, and I am loving the new maps.

    P.S. Teach….. You spelled pajamas wrong.

  • yami

    To me, I feel that MW2 was a huge disappointment. I feel it really did improve on how the online worked, like making death-streaks out of Martyrdom or however you spell it, but it could have done A WHOLE lot better with its single player and co-op, as well as improving on graphics, especially the pixels effects for sparks, and the blood. I have always felt Treyarch has been the best COD makers, and still will not change my mind, where Black Ops looks to be much better than MW2 story-wise, and multiplayer wise, as well as in the co-op department. World At War to me was a better game, just the only complaint for me was using some of the old weapons.

    P.S. BFBC2 is a much much more better game than MW2 , lot more fun and involving, has me sucked in the game every time I play, but I feel Medal of Honor is going to be best overall, as it plays as a wonderful mix, an great in between of both MW2 and BFBC2, having a MW2 sense of speed, but the BFBC2 sense of being in a team, as well as a knife from MW2 style, and destruction to a certain extent from BFBC2, and character classes, and the amazing sounds of realistic war from DICE, as well as certain mission types similar to Rush and domination style, and certain vehicles being accessible, and having kill-streak rewards similar to MW2, damn its just gonna be freaking awesome. I just wish shooters will use a ranking system, and unlock tree like MAG’s :\

  • Gunner

    My feelings towards that is that the game is simply addicting. It has this spark to it that makes you addicted to it and keep returning to it even with all the problems, listed in the article + glitches, lag, boosters, idiots and noobtubers. Maybe it is the quick run n’ game play of the game where you don’t have the fight wit sluggish and “weighty” controls, or the quick jump and play game modes where you can play a nice quick match of team death match or capture the flag before you go to work/school/anywhere you go. People keep hating on the Call of Duty series, but in the end it is one of the top selling series and in my opinion one of the best multiplayer experiences and an action-packed-Hollywood-like movie campaign. This is a reason I know I am buying Black Ops, it’s because the CoD series is the one of the only series that can make me enjoy a game for a full year and maybe even more (CoD4 almost 3 years).

  • LVG

    Hmm. Well, let’s get out the facts first. I’m a college graduate with a bachelor’s degree in computer sciences. I have a well-paying job in the IT field (not gaming related.) I personally play Call of Duty because I’m good at it. I don’t constantly die, and when I do, it doesn’t bother me too much because I know it’s just a part of the game. It’s understandable that someone with a narrow minded perspective wouldn’t get why people other than children enjoy this game. It’s violent, it’s fast and furious, and I guess that doesn’t vibe well with the ‘older’ mindset of gamers like you. I myself am 31, not sure about you, perhaps your upwards of 50 or so?

  • random bc2 fan

    Who knew there were so many people who come to this site. Why don’t u all post elswhere. Mw2 sucks so we can move on.

  • PS360Wii gamer

    You’re probably one of the people who suck at mw2…guys with 0.20 KD HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! F*ck off bitch

    • Your Face.

      Haha and you’re probably one of the guys that sucks at life(you know that place outside of your mom’s basement) with a 2.0KD on MW2.

      I chose BC2 over MW2 simply because it looked more fun and realistic and had the destruction and lack of annoying ass kids. Plus if you bought the game from a retailer you get all the map packs for free on BC2.

      So yeah I think MW2 is nothing but a place to pitch a tent and start a nice fire.

  • Mike

    You made some very good points (i do like Lee Evans though)

    COD4 consumed nearly all of my gaming time, i played it for most of the 2 years before Modern Warfare 2 came out. The only thing I liked about world at War was the Zombie mode.

    Im not nearly as hooked on this though, all the glitches and they feel of the game has changed due dual shotguns and some stupid perks which i cant help but think was aimed at youger players.

    This game feels more dumbed down and not to mention since the map pack came out the ps3, games have been laggy or just ended alot more then normal and i dont see that being fixed and time soon as Infinity Ward pretty much dont exist anymore.

    Which is why i sold my copy on ebay today