There’s no escaping that Name of Obligation is at present in a little bit of a rut. Though there are shiny spots in Fashionable Warfare 3’s multiplayer and Zombies mode, it finally feels all too acquainted. And the marketing campaign? Our reviewer Simon Cardy stated it was “maybe the worst Name of Obligation single-player marketing campaign I’ve performed.” It at present has a disappointing Metacritic score of 56 and, unsurprisingly, Fashionable Warfare 3 didn’t make into IGN’s prime 10 Name of Obligation video games (spoilers: it got here backside of the pile).
Fortunately, Name of Obligation has been distinctive at instances and, years on, lots of its biggest moments nonetheless stand the take a look at of time. So we’re trying again to determine which Name of Obligation video games are our absolute favorites, and we’re speaking in regards to the full bundle – marketing campaign, multiplayer, zombies, all the things. IGN workers voted on all of the video games, and you’ll learn all about why we picked what we picked beneath. After, you’ll want to tell us how we did and share your favorites within the feedback beneath!
10. Name of Obligation: Black Ops Chilly Struggle
Name of Obligation: Black Ops Chilly Struggle units itself aside from different entries within the legendary franchise by how a lot it excels when your gun is definitely holstered. Whereas Name of Obligation is clearly recognized for its world-class shootouts with explosions round each nook and edge-of-your-seat moments, Black Ops Chilly Struggle added one other wrinkle to that formulation.
The marketing campaign takes place throughout probably the most essential moments of the Chilly Struggle and we get time to be taught extra about our covert ops crew at our safehouses and sneak round KGB headquarters as a Russian double agent. These moments are quiet in the very best methods, they usually make the louder ones much more impactful.
Black Ops Chilly Struggle’s multiplayer fell a little bit brief however its Zombies mode was a spotlight. Positive, we’d have beloved some extra content material, nevertheless it supplied extremely polished and tense gameplay classes we nonetheless take into consideration right this moment.
9. Name of Obligation: Fashionable Warfare 3 (2011)
There have been some large points with 2023’s Name of Obligation: Fashionable Warfare 3, however 2011’s Name of Obligation: Fashionable Warfare 3 did an awesome job of iterating and bettering on what got here earlier than. Its multiplayer added new parts corresponding to weapon development, proficiencies, and extra, however what it did greatest was create one of the compelling and addicting Name of Obligation multiplayer experiences ever made as much as that time.
The marketing campaign was enjoyable sufficient and despite the fact that it isn’t one in every of our favorites, it had the superb setpieces and “wow” moments that made this franchise so standard. It was additionally the conclusion of one of the beloved Name of Obligation trilogies ever and that in itself was another excuse it was definitely worth the admission value.
8. Name of Obligation: Black Ops 2
Name of Obligation: Black Ops 2 was notable for a lot of causes, together with that it featured the sequence’ first branching narrative and arsenal of futuristic weaponry. Whereas it continued the Chilly Struggle-era story from the unique Black Ops, it additionally took us to 2025 to expertise an entire new Chilly Struggle that centered on Alex Mason’s son, David. Oh, and don’t neglect that Raul Menendez is without doubt one of the greatest villains in your entire franchise.
Black Ops 2’s multiplayer additionally had a couple of firsts just like the Choose 10 system and Scorestreaks, including a welcome degree of depth and customization to the expertise. Throw in its Zombies mode, which was the right, laugh-filled various to the marketing campaign and multiplayer, and Black Ops 2 remains to be a standout Name of Obligation sport over a decade later.
7. Name of Obligation: World at Struggle
Name of Obligation: World at Struggle introduced us again to World Struggle 2 after the roaring success that was Fashionable Warfare’s modern setting, nevertheless it did so another way. As an alternative of merely going again to Normandy and D-Day for the umpteenth time, the story centered on the Pacific theater and the Pink Military’s reversals of the tide at Stalingrad to the Fall of Berlin. The marketing campaign was crammed with a ton of close-quarters fight moments, lots of which have been in tight, packed trenches, and for the primary time allow you to play with as much as three different buddies.
What World at Struggle might endlessly be remembered for, nonetheless, was its introduction of what we now know because the Zombies mode, or Nach der Untoten because it was referred to as. Its multiplayer was additionally successful because it introduced in a lot of what made Fashionable Warfare nice and tailored it for the period the sport was set in.
6. Name of Obligation
Name of Obligation first appeared on the scene in 2003, at a time when Medal of Honor and Battlefield 1942 have been on the prime of their sport and proving what could possibly be completed within the WWII style. However Name of Obligation did various issues that might instantly set it aside, together with chosing to inform its story from the angle of not solely america, but in addition Britain and the Soviet Union.
It additionally had you going into battle with different troopers by your aspect as a substitute of getting you face the horrors of battle alone, and that led to a extra practical and compelling expertise. And don’t neglect the “shellshock” function, which visually and audibly confirmed the risks and penalties of enormous explosions and introduced us nearer to battle than ever earlier than.
Whereas it’s clearly a little bit outdated 20 years on, the marketing campaign remains to be enjoyable to play and it’s unattainable to understate the inspiration it constructed for the way forward for not simply the Name of Obligation sequence however first-person shooters as an entire.
5. Name of Obligation: Black Ops
Name of Obligation: Black Ops took us to the Nineteen Sixties to be taught the story of CIA operative Alex Mason. From the primary moments in that chair within the interrogation room to probably the greatest twists in your entire franchise, we couldn’t get sufficient of the story that additionally had the star energy of Sam Worthington, Ed Harris, and Gary Oldman. We beforehand ranked Black Ops’ marketing campaign as Name of Obligation’s greatest, and we stand by it right this moment.
Black Ops’ multiplayer is simply as iconic and a few of the maps, together with Firing Vary and Nuketown, are nonetheless favorites in 2023 as they’ve been introduced ahead a number of instances. The multiplayer suite additionally launched CoD Factors, which modified how issues have been unlocked and made development really feel recent once more.
Nazi Zombies returned too, besides this time as a full-fledged mode, and it even allow you to play as JFK, Fidel Castro, Richard Nixon, or Robert McNamara. There was additionally an unlockable mode that performed like a retro arcade model. It was all fantastic.
4. Name of Obligation 2
Name of Obligation 2 was an unimaginable achievement by itself, however its timing was simply as vital. The follow-up to the unique Name of Obligation arrived as a launch title for Xbox 360 and demonstrated what “next-gen” truly meant again then.
Whereas the unique Name of Obligation was spectacular, the ability of Xbox 360 – alongside developments in PC tech – led to a WWII expertise like by no means earlier than. Probably the most notable examples was the smoke grenades, as they have been an awesome showcase for what the devs might do to make a extra practical expertise. Not solely have been they a sight to behold because the smoke billowed up and smothered the display, however they may be used tactically to get out of a troublesome scenario.
With Name of Obligation 2, the long run was right here, even when the multiplayer nonetheless solely allowed for eight gamers in a match on Xbox Reside.
3. Name of Obligation: Fashionable Warfare (2019)
Spoilers: we LOVE Fashionable Warfare and that adoration extends to 2019’s Fashionable Warfare, the sport that rebooted a traditional. That in itself was a troublesome job, however Infinity Ward handed with flying colours and created the very best marketing campaign because the unique Black Ops.
Certainly, the single-player was full of stand-out moments, from Going Darkish’s nonlinear stealth infiltration to Clear Home, during which a crew of SAS troops clear a pitch-black terrorist hideout utilizing night-goggles, making split-second choices to verify its a risk within the crosshairs and never an unarmed civilian.
Fashionable Warfare’s multiplayer was first rate too, and tried to evolve one of the beloved multiplayer video games of all time to the fashionable day with some good additions, however its implementation wasn’t excellent. That stated, its new modes like Realism and the 2v2 Gunfight have been nice.
2. Name of Obligation: Fashionable Warfare 2 (2009)
Name of Obligation 4: Fashionable Warfare and its sequel Fashionable Warfare 2 are usually not solely a few of the greatest Name of Obligation video games ever, but in addition a few of the greatest and most vital video games of all time. Whereas Fashionable Warfare set the gold normal for what these first-person shooters could possibly be, Fashionable Warfare pushed it to an excellent larger peak.
We might discuss No Russian and the stunning, revenge-filled marketing campaign ending all day, however multiplayer is the place this sport actually shines. From its customizable Killstreaks and development challenges, to the concentrate on greater maps with a ton of gamers, to the introduction of the cooperative Spec Ops maps, there was SO a lot to like about its multiplayer mode. And the very best half? It simply improved on all the things else we beloved from Fashionable Warfare, which we are able to’t wait to let you know about subsequent…
1. Name of Obligation 4: Fashionable Warfare (2007)
Name of Obligation: Fashionable Warfare 2 might have perfected the formulation that Name of Obligation 4: Fashionable Warfare constructed, however new and glossy issues can’t all the time stack as much as what it’s wish to expertise one thing for the primary time. Name of Obligation 4: Fashionable Warfare is the right instance of that, and was a revolution that modified video video games endlessly.
This was the yr that Name of Obligation turned the Name of Obligation we all know right this moment, and it was due to a tag-team assault of a implausible marketing campaign and a legendary multiplayer expertise. We’ll always remember being launched to Cleaning soap and Captain Value for the primary time, or after we received to leap into an AC-130 gunship, escape a cargo ship in the course of a stormy sea, play by means of All Ghillied Up – probably the best Name of Obligation mission ever – and a lot extra.
We’ll additionally always remember the numerous hours we fortunately sunk into multiplayer, incomes killstreak after killstreak, unlocking each gun and problem we might, discovering the right perks, and profitable or shedding alongside our greatest buddies. These have been the times we’ll always remember. That is Name of Obligation.