The Call of Duty franchise may not have ever been immune to backlash and criticism from critics and audiences alike, though they have always maintained at least respectable scores- until now, that is. The newest entry in the series, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, has been widely panned, to the point that it’s the series’ worst-reviewed mainline entry to date.
At the time of writing, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 has a Metacritic score of 50 after 33 reviews, which is the lowest ever for a mainline Call of Duty game (on OpenCritic, it has a similarly low aggregate score of 56 after 30 reviews). The second-lowest on Metacritic is Call of Duty: Ghosts’ PC version, which still maintains a significant lead over Modern Warfare 3, sitting at a score of 68 after 14 reviews.
In fact, even if all Call of Duty spinoffs are factored in, Modern Warfare 3’s reception still paints a grim picture, as it still stands as the second-worst reviewed game in the series of all time, sitting behind only Call of Duty: Black Ops – Declassified, which released for the PS Vita in 2012 and has a Metacritic score of 33 after 88 reviews.
Last week, it was reported that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 was developed in the space of just 16 months amidst widespread crunch, with the initial plan having been to release it as an expansion for last year’s game, only for Activision to reboot it as a full-fledged new entry. Sledgehammer Games, the lead developer on the project, has since then denied reports of rushed development.
Whether the poor reception and weak word of mouth for the multiplayer shooter will have any impact on its sales remains to be seen. In the UK, it debuted on top of the weekly physical charts, though its physical launch sales are 25% lower than those of last year’s Modern Warfare 2.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is available now on PS5, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Our own review of the game will be going live soon, so stay tuned for that. Until then, make sure to read our thoughts on its single player campaign, and why we feel it’s something of a disaster.