When it comes to a Call of Duty game, I only have one objective – to complete the campaign on the hardest difficulty. Since Call of Duty 2, and in every Call of Duty that I have subsequently owned, I’ve attempted to complete the campaign on Veteran. I’ve mostly succeeded too, after losing copious amounts of blood, sweat and tears… and tempers. The only COD that I was unable to complete on Veteran was COD 3, but that was the game’s fault, because the save became corrupted and I couldn’t be bothered to start over. In most cases, they were at least challenging. I’ll give a special mention to Call of Duty: World at War and Modern Warfare 2, which were both hair pullingly frustrating in their own unique ways. Still, every Call of Duty so far has challenged me on Veteran. That was until I played Advanced Warfare, that is.
Advanced Warfare’s campaign was fun, don’t get me wrong. It was well crafted, visually impressive and it had that classic Call of Duty recipe of near death misses coupled with main characters dying, infused with a seasoning of world threatening totalitarians and finished of with a healthy glug of extra-virgin patriotism… not that I’m American. Still, for all of its glitz, glamour, blood and explosions, it wasn’t challenging in the slightest. To be honest, when I completed the game I wasn’t even sure if I was going to unlock the achievement for finishing the game on Veteran, because I assumed that I’d been mistakenly playing on Hardened the whole time – it was that “easy”. Obviously, I use the word ‘easy’ sparingly, as it was difficult at times, and I died now and then on some parts of certain missions. But, in general, I seemed to glide through the campaign with relative ease.
Now, I’m not boasting. I haven’t played a Call of Duty game for at least one and a half years. And, whilst pointing a digitised gun at things with a controller, and pressing the shoot button isn’t exactly a skill that you lose, it is a skill that is refined the more you play a certain type of game. Even still, I’ve never been amazing at shooters, I sit in the ‘above average’ pool and, even on the easiest Call of Duty campaign (in my eyes), Black Ops, it took me at least three weeks to complete. In all, Advanced Warfare took me a maximum of ten hours, and I think that’s an over-estimate. I completed it in just over a week, which is ridiculous for the hardest difficulty.
Maybe it’s because the game was shorter than usual? Although, I did notice that I died considerably less than I usually would. There were no, “throw my controller at my TV, scream in anguish, turn off the lights, curl up into a little ball and muffle my tears with my pillow”, moments. There were no frustratingly, ‘impossible’ missions, where I’d shout “bull-shit!” at the screen and rage-quit. There were no points in the game where a checkpoint had saved my progress at the precise moment that a grenade would go off next to me. In all, it was underwhelming unchallenging. I like being forced to give up for a bit, because it makes the victory taste even sweeter. Now, after practically breezing through the campaign on Veteran, I feel nothing. No sense of achievement, I’m not impressed by my skills at COD and I don’t feel like gloating to my brother about how much harder Veteran difficulty was… because it wasn’t. In all, the lack of challenge has sucked the fun out of trying to challenge myself.
How did you find the Advanced Warfare campaign? Was it too easy? Or do you not even bother with campaign mode anymore? Let me know in the comments below!