With 2019’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Infinity Ward is graduating from the action-packed, blockbuster formula that has for so long sustained the series. The team instead is aiming to emphasize realism, especially with regards to the many conflicts plaguing the modern world. In doing so, it seems the developers have crafted a powerful narrative, one playtesters are resonating with so much that the game has supposedly brought a few of them to tears.
During an interview with PCGamesN, Studio Art Director Joel Emslie and Campaign Gameplay Director Jacob Minkoff spoke of the emotion they’ve witnessed coming from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare playtesters. Apparently, this is due to the title’s more serious tone, which Emslie compared to the likes of Sicario and American Sniper. Emslie told PCGamesN:
The context and the stakes are so much higher with this, so when we do a moment like Townhouse it just resonates much more, and I believe they can become their own thing. We’re making new hallmark moments, most definitely.
It’s because of the weight and gravity we have now, I’ve never seen narrative in a Modern Warfare game like this narrative. The stories [of the original trilogy] were great for that time period, but I think the gaming community expects more now, it has to be more sophisticated, and from what I’ve seen it’s incredible, there’s a really great story driving this thing.
Minkoff added, “we’ve had multiple playtesters cry.” Emslie corroborated the claim, saying he didn’t believe people cried until he saw video of it himself. “It was a real human moment, and now I’m like, ‘I worked on a game that made someone cry,'” Emslie finished.
That Modern Warfare is able to elicit this kind of emotional response may draw in a new audience. After all, as Emslie noted, gamers expect more out of these experiences now. Thankfully, the wait to find out how successful Infinity Ward is on this front won’t be a long one.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare hits store shelves for the PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One on October 25, 2019.