Call Of Duty Is Nothing Like The Real Thing

I've been a long-time advocate of somebody making a war game that plays like an actual war: one where you fight in real battles, not battles from a video game based on an action movie. This is what I mean.

This clip, posted on military site, depicts a US infantry squad in combat in Afghanistan. Thanks to the camera's vantage point instant parallels can be drawn with first-person shooter games.

Had this firefight taken place in a game, it would have been a tutorial level. Or a brief stopover between objectives. A few bad guys, a few shots fired, then you move on to the next triggered sequence. In comparison to the bombastic set pieces of modern war games, it's pedestrian.

Here, though, it's tense. Gripping. Partly because we know these are real people, sure, but also because of the (albeit unintentional) cinematic effects. The shaky-cam, the nervous chatter, the immediacy of the whole thing brought to you by loud sound effects and copious amounts of dust.

It's surely time we got to play a game like this. Where even the smallest skirmish is as exciting as it is dangerous. Where tension is built via the panicked calls of comrades, not a rousing soundtrack. Not for some sick thrill of living the life of a soldier, but as a means of education as entertainment. Put someone in the shoes of a real soldier facing real battles, where even minor firefights are important, health packs can't save you and allies don't respawn just in time to save the day.

Note: there's some NSFW language in this.

This image was lost some time after publication.

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