Players want to know if the developers have made another "oopsie" with the Zombies mode in Modern Warfare 3 by stepping further away from the traditional Zombies we all know and love. Short answer; we believe so, and there are plenty of reasons why.
MW3 Zombies Review: Buried or Better
Zombies Mode in MW3 has a DMZ-like feel, with squads loading into an open map to complete objectives. These range from killing zombies, defeating armed enemies (AI), locating weapon caches, and much more. After completing player objectives, you and your squad extract, and that's it.
Players spawn into a map without purpose, finding the objective themselves in the desolate and unimpressive Urzikstan map, to run around like a headless chicken. Upon spawning, you are required to check your map where you'll find your objectives. You're given 45 minutes to complete them before the match concludes or you extract.
The lack of direction and push for player independence leads to an extreme absence of motivation to survive the zombie apocalypse. The original Zombies electrified players, empowering the indomitable human spirit to survive and overcome the impossible odds. However, MW3 Zombies does everything but that.
MW3 Zombies Review: Originality and New Features
This Zombies Mode lacks originality, which is ironic considering the entirety of the Multiplayer is dedicated to previous Modern Warfare titles. The Ray Gun and Wunderwaffe DG-2 are the only original features in MW3 Zombies, and yet the developers felt the need to change the Ray Gun and implement bullet drop.
The Third-Person view is worth a mention. This feature would've been excellent in old Zombies Modes, however it's rather difficult to appreciate the quality of new features amongst all this horror.
Players can complete new and unique objectives that are rather enjoyable. These include destroying newly landed rockets, breaking into weapon safes with a drill, or destroying enemy operatives who plan to infiltrate the island for the worse. These objectives are incredibly immersive, so much so that you forget you're playing Zombies.
MW3 Zombies Review: Map Overview
All players spawn on the outer (colorless) areas of the map where the Zombies are slow and the environment is less intense. If players desire a more tense, yet rewarding experience, they're able to head into the orange and red zones where the Zombies are more overpowered and come in different variants, including bosses.
This dynamic is incredibly fun, once your zone becomes weary and rundown, head to the next and complete more rewarding objectives. The only downside is that there's quite an underwhelming "commute" towards the next zone, especially if your vehicle runs out of fuel like mine did halfway through my incredibly valiant journey.
I would highly recommend playing the Zombies Mode with friends or squadding up in your lobby — the solo experience wasn't particularly enjoyable.
MW3 Zombies Review: Verdict - 2.5/5
It disappoints me to announce the developers have let us down again, perhaps unaware that it's the original Zombies Mode that is most suitable for Call of Duty fans.
Call of Duty Zombies needs the following:
- A reason to motivate players; turn on power to the mainframe, complete easter eggs
- Sense of direction, forcing players to try to survive rather than choosing to "ExTrAcT"
- Lovable characters; funny, loveable, sarcastic, and badass warriors
- A thrilling, hopeful, and tragic-filled narrative
- Rewarding weapons; the unforgetting feeling of boxing the Thunder Gun
Despite the bias, Call of Duty cannot release the original Zombies timeline, narrative, and characters and present players with the current MW3 Zombie experience. Players will argue for the steps developers have taken in an attempt to synergize MW3 Warzone and Zombies together, but it just doesn't do the Call of Duty Zombies name justice.
I'm going to give the MW3 Zombies experience a 2.5/5. Surprising to most, the title receives its first few points for playability, optimization, gunplay, and map design. However, the reason why I cannot raise the review is the title lacks creativity, passion, and originality.