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Best Call of Duty Games of All Time

If I were to ask you, what conjures up when you hear the words 'Call of Duty'? Arduous battles, engrossing storylines, heart-pounding multiplayer modes, right? These are but a few reasons why Call of Duty has claimed a firm place among the annals of video gaming history. However, not all Call of Duty games are created equal. So, allow me to break the ice and reveal the best of the best to you. 

Call of Duty: Black Ops II ★★★★★

Many CoD veterans, including me, would concur that Call of Duty: Black Ops II  tends to push the envelope. And why not? This game is the perfect blend of classic CoD gameplay and innovative elements. Its ground-breaking non-linear storytelling, which branches based on player decisions, makes each playthrough unique. Trust me, nothing beats the satisfaction of altering history in this futuristic Cold War saga! 

The Gameplay ★★★★☆

Call of Duty: Black Ops II keeps players on the edge with its thrilling, adrenaline-pumping gameplay. Unlike many of its predecessors, Black Ops II offers multiple decision-making scenarios, giving a sense of control to the players and altering the game's outcome based on their choices. Polished first-person shooting mechanics, combined with the high-stakes branching storyline, makes the gameplay more immersive than ever. 

The mechanics are fine-tuned to an astonishing degree, providing a sense of weight and tactility that most shooters lack. With every gunshot and explosion, the controller vibrates and the audio thuds, convincingly conveying a battlefield's frantic pace and ambiance. The Pick 10 system also brings a new depth to player customization, allowing you to tailor your multiplayer character and loadout to your style. 

A fan favorite, Zombie mode returns in Black Ops II, further enriching the game-playing experience. This time, it isn't just about survival but involves a mini-campaign of its own. The thrill of fighting off waves of undead while piecing together a narrative is a unique gameplay experience that you do not want to miss. 

The Story ★★★☆☆

Just when you thought the narrative couldn't get any more intense, Call of Duty: Black Ops II ups the ante. Trust me, this game's story pushes the envelope, and then some. The narrative places you in a near-future setting, a first for the series, as well as the Cold War-era. The storytelling prowess is further elevated by the non-linear structure and the "choose your own path" feature. I don't know about you, but for me, the feeling of your decisions directly impacting the course of the game - it's simply something else. 

This story isn't your run-of-the-mill war epic. It's a heart-pounding, off-the-edge-of-your-seat, adrenaline-filled journey, featuring the thrilling rivalry between protagonists Alex Mason and Frank Woods and the antagonist, Raul Menendez. I got a chance to know Menendez, his motives, and let's just say - the game sure blurs the line between villain and hero, right? 

The switch between different timelines not only keeps things intriguing but also gives us a fascinating perspective on how things unfold across generations. So if you're like me, who appreciates the story as much as the gameplay, Black Ops II certainly delivers on this front. So, are you ready to decide the narrative fate of humanity in this gritty installment of the Call of Duty universe?

The Multiplayer ★★★★☆

When it comes to the multiplayer experience, Call of Duty: Black Ops II stands out as one of the defining moments of the franchise. The sheer joy and exhilaration delivered by this game's multiplayer mode truly set it apart.

Several key features that make this game's multiplayer platform a favorite among gamers are: 

  • Pick 10 System: This innovative system offers flexibility, giving players the freedom to customize their loadout by choosing any combination of ten items from the wide range of weapons, attachments, and perks available.
  • Scorestreaks: Unlike previous games where streak rewards were based on kills alone, this feature rewards players for earning points, providing a more balanced and fair gameplay.
  • League Play: This system groups players of similar skill levels together, offering a competitive atmosphere and the opportunity to climb the ranks.

Adding to these features is a broad cast of diverse and balanced weapons to choose from. This makes each match a unique experience, driving players to develop strategies based on their arsenal.

Overall, Call of Duty: Black Ops II offers a multiplayer experience that is both diverse and complex. It's a game that easily draws you in, keeps you engaged, and always leaves you eager for the next match. Can you think of anything more exciting?

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007) ★★★★☆

First released in 2007, 'Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare' truly revolutionized the first-person shooter genre. From its cinematic campaign to its highly addictive multiplayer mode, it was a game that quickly grasped the attention of gamers worldwide.

The Gameplay ★★★★☆

Nothing short of groundbreaking, the gameplay of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare revolutionized the first-person shooter genre. At its heart, the beauty of the gameplay lies in its simplicity. However, scratch beneath the surface and you'll find a deeply immersive and satisfying tactical shooter. 

Whether you were storming Russian farmhouses, acting as an AC-130 gunner, or trying to survive the nuclear devastation in the Middle East, every moment was a thrilling experience. The brilliantly-paced campaign was filled with unforgettable moments that are etched into the minds of all who played it. 

  • Authenticity: By incorporating authentic military techniques and tactics, players felt like an integral part of a real-life modern military unit. It wasn't just about running and gunning strategy played a crucial role in determining victory.
  • Mechanics: The gunplay was excellent, with a satisfying weighty feeling to every shot. Each firearm felt unique and had a major impact on how confrontations played out.
  • Variety: The diverse range of missions kept things fresh and exciting. From sniper missions that required pinpoint precision, to assaults where brute force was required, players were constantly challenged in new and innovative ways.

In terms of multiplayer, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare laid the foundation for the future of online FPS games. The introduction of features like the killstreak and the perk system added a strategic depth to multiplayer matches that was unprecedented at the time. 

It was the perfect blend of straightforward gunplay and intricate strategy, making it a masterclass in game design. It set a standard few other games have been able to match, even to this day.

The Story ★★★☆☆

Ever get pulled into a game because of its intriguing plot? The enthralling storyline of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007) won't disappoint. It takes you around the globe to areas rife with conflict, full of tension and suspense. 

The game starts with you as Sgt. 'Soap' MacTavish, a new British S.A.S recruit. You begin by taking out a Middle Eastern president, orchestrated behind the scenes by Russian ultra-nationalist Zakhaev. 

As the plot unfolds, you switch between 'Soap' in the Middle East and U.S. Marine, Paul Jackson, in a conflict-racked fictitious Middle Eastern country. The story grips you and shocks you when least expected. 

Remember when a nuclear device decimates a city and kills many U.S. Marines? This shocking moment gave players a grim look at war and was a key point in the Call of Duty series. The narrative's intensity and the horrors of war left a lasting impression. 

Lastly, who can forget the final mission where 'Soap' faces Zakhaev on a speeding cargo truck? It's an exciting sequence that's hard to forget. 

The gripping narrative of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007), coupled with challenging missions and unforgettable characters, makes it a standout entry in the CoD franchise. The realistic, twist-filled plot makes it one of the best Call of Duty games ever.

The Multiplayer ★★★☆☆

Where this game truly shone was in its multiplayer environment. A hallmark in this series, Modern Warfare's competitive multiplayer platform was widely acclaimed, spawning a passionate community of players. 

  • Multiple Game Modes: The game offered a range of modes, including Team Deathmatch, Free-for-All, and Search and Destroy.
  • Customizable Loadouts: It opened doors to fully customizable player loadouts, a feature that many competitors later adopted.
  • Killstreak Reward System: It introduced the exciting "killstreak" reward system, which gave players power-ups for consecutive kills.

Call Of Duty: Black Ops ★★★☆☆

The gameplay of Call Of Duty: Black Ops takes the experience to a whole new level. A seamless blend of traditional COD combat mechanics with new elements, it kept players on the edge of their seats. The missions were diverse and intense, thanks to a creative mix of stealth, gun-blazing action, and even underwater diving. The addition of a neat range of weapons, including the explosive crossbow, took combat satisfaction to unprecedented heights. 

The Story ★★★★☆

Set during the Cold War, the narrative of Call of Duty: Black Ops is nothing short of a thrilling roller-coaster ride. You are immersed in the shoes of CIA operative Alex Mason and face the task of uncovering a series of conspiracy theories linked tightly with world history events. How does it feel to potentially alter the course of the Cold War? With plot twists and cliffhangers spreading across the gameplay, Black Ops leaves you pondering long after the game ends. 

The Multiplayer ★★★★☆

Remember rushing home to play the Zombies mode with your friends? Yes, this is where it all started. Call of Duty: Black Ops extended the multiplayer experience beyond traditional warfare, introducing the world to the exhilarating Zombie mode. Facing the endless hordes of the undead in a team is not only a challenging test of survival skills, but also an absolute blast. Additionally, the game offered well-balanced maps and modes, creating an engaging and addictive multiplayer experience.

The Gameplay ★★★☆☆

 Enter a world where you're tested on the basis of your strategic abilities, reflexes, and endurance. This is the gaming universe of Call of Duty: Black Ops, arguably one of the most engaging entries in the franchise. Now let's delve into the enticing aspects of this game's immersive gameplay. 

Beyond the compelling storyline, you'll interact with accurately recreated weapons from the period it's set in and face multifaceted missions that span across diverse geographical locations. Let's break down the key components: 

  • Combat Mechanics : Engage your foes in intense battles, handling everything from stealth assassinations to full-scale warfare. The encounters are extremely realistic, designed to test your strategic instincts and reaction times.
  • Weapons : You'll have access to an array of weapons, each painstakingly replicated from their real-world counterparts. From the iconic AK-47 to unconventional crossbows, your armory is as diverse as it is deadly.
  • Mission Diversity : No two missions are alike each one presents unique challenges and requires you to adopt different strategies. You could find yourself infiltrating enemy bases, battling hostile forces in jungle environments, or unraveling mysteries in secret labs.
  • Environments : The maps and environments are designed to reflect the era, engulfing you in the tension and uncertainty of the Cold War era.

The multiplayer aspect of the game is equally fascinating, boasting a wide range of modes and maps that cater to different play styles. Whether you're a fan of free-for-all or team-based objectives.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) ★★★☆☆

When it comes to unprecedented graphic detail and refined gameplay mechanics, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) steals the show. Its deep, dark storyline, combined with immersive environments and high-octane action, is something of a marvel. Infused with a near-photorealistic in-game universe, you feel right within the heart of every mission, every encounter. Plus, the multiplayer mode is as expansive as it is thrilling. 

The Gameplay ★★★★☆

Picture this: you're finding comfort in the standard military shooter routine. Running around, gunfire abound, enemies are closing in--then boom! Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) takes the mundane and turns it into pure exhilaration. This game is no cookie-cutter shoot 'em up. Oh no, my friend, it is so much more. 

The gameplay is divided into three main modes, each offering a distinct gaming experience. These are: 

  1. Campaign: An epic, cinematic single-player experience that merges stealth and strategic gameplay with fast-paced action.
  2. Multiplayer: Competitive play with a wide variety of modes, maps, and scenarios. Whether it's the favorite Deathmatch or the thrilling Domination, the choices are seemingly endless.
  3. Co-op Missions: Tackle objective-based missions with your friends online. Each mission is a unique standalone story, so you don't need to play them in any particular order.

Each mode is a unique experience, offering a different type of playstyle and strategy. But what really sets the gameplay apart? 

  • Realism: With lifelike graphics and true-to-life physics, every explosion, bullet, and combat scenario feels incredibly real.
  • Map Design: The maps are an intricate mix of open areas and tight corners, facilitating various strategies and approaches.
  • Sound Design: The sound plays a crucial role in heightening the sense of danger and unpredictability. You can hear every bullet whizzing by, and every footstep becomes a warning.

What completes this package is the game's technical aspect. High-octane action, stunning details, enhanced character customization, all wrapped up in a buttery smooth performance. There's not much to find fault with, really. 

The Story ★★★★★

Set in a fictional but closely intertwined reality to our own, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019) launches us into a thrilling and heart-wrenching storyline that dives deep into the shadows of modern conflict. From intense gunfights in wind-swept European cities to stealth operations carried out under the cover of darkness, you are taken on a rollercoaster of adrenaline and emotion. 

The narrative focuses on three main characters: 

  • Alex, a CIA officer
  • Captain Price, a special forces veteran
  • Farah Karim, a rebel leader from the fictional country of Urzikstan

Each character's story is uniquely designed to shed light on the different perspectives and realities of war, allowing you play from multiple angles and discover the deep, dark side of modern warfare. 

Let's dive a little deeper into the narrative: 

  1. Alex is tasked with assisting rebel forces battle against the Russian occupation in the beleaguered country of Urzikstan. His journey takes on a personal persona as you watch him grapple with the gray areas of international interventions and moral compromises.
  2. Captain Price’s journey fascinates on a completely different level. Swept up in dangerous undercover operations, he navigates through covert operations and treacherous international political waters. His character helps you understand the weight and cost of decision-making in war.
  3. The leader of the Urzikstan liberation force, Farah Karim, adds a unique perspective to the reality of warfare, giving voice to the powerless and oppressed. Her storyline highlights the human element in conflict, focusing on the courage it takes to stand against a formidable enemy.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019)’s grand narrative captures the complexity of modern conflict, in both its political and personal dimensions. It pulls no punches and serves up a raw and unfiltered perspective of the gritty reality we often overlook.

The Multiplayer ★★★☆☆

Never before has the multiplayer experience been so immersive and engaging as it is in Modern Warfare 2019. Redefining the online combat scenarios from the ground up, this game has truly transcended the typical Call of Duty Multiplayer experience, taking it to a whole new level of excitement and intensity. 

Stepping away from the routine, Modern Warfare 2019 offers an array of modes, tools, and maps that do justice to the fan’s heightened expectations. 

Let's take a quick dive into what makes this multiplayer stand out. 

  • Crossplay: For the first time in the franchise, players on different platforms can go head-to-head. PS4, Xbox, or PC, it doesn't matter, everyone fights on an equal footing.
  • Weapon Customization: The Gunsmith feature allows you to personalize your armament. Customizable attributes include optic sights, grips, and muzzles among others.
  • Realistic Maps: The riveting and diverse map designs keep the action fresh and exciting, each providing drastic variance in gameplay.

Call Of Duty: World At War ★★★☆☆

The fifth spot on our list of the best Call of Duty games brings us back to the raw, brutal warfare of the World War II era. Call Of Duty: World At War is an absolute classic that offers a gritty, hard-hitting representation of one of humanity’s darkest periods. 

The Story ★★★☆☆

The game’s captivating narrative brings history to your screens with high fidelity. You find yourself in the boots of different soldiers from the American and Russian frontlines, highlighting how the war impacted the world from different viewpoints. With a memorable voice cast featuring Gary Oldman and Kiefer Sutherland, the plot is as enthralling as it gets. 

The Gameplay ★★★★☆

World At War stays true to its warfare theme through intense, gritty gameplay. Your encounters with enemies are visceral, the sound design visceral, and every battle is a fight for survival. The game introduces the always-cherished Nazi Zombies mode, a wave defense ordeal set in creepy environments. It also featured some of Call of Duty's most memorable missions, like 'Vendetta' and 'Heart of the Reich'. 

The Multiplayer ★★★☆☆

World At War’s multiplayer carried the intensity from the single-player campaign right over into online play. A total of four players could fight side by side in the co-op campaign mode, turning each mission into a high-stake strategic assault. Multiplayer features some of the most classic maps in the CoD franchise like Castle, Dome, and Makin, which provided gamers with plenty of opportunities for both tactical and frantic combat. In short, the multiplayer experience in World at War is truly something to behold.

About the author

Thomas Branderhorst

I have a fondness for web design? This hobby also includes 3D modeling, logo making and creating impressive business cards. What begun as a simple pastime, has now transformed into my main gig.