Modern Warfare 3 vs. Battlefield 3: Who Won E3?

No doubt you’ve all had a good old look at both Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, and Battlefield 3 over the past couple of days, and you’re probably aware that these two super-size-games are hoping to cut the others’ throat. We’ve finally seen some more revealing gameplay-focussed clips from MW3 and B3 has bamboozled us with more sexy live streaming footage, but who’s clocking the big boys at this stage? Who has swayed your favour in their direction?

As I await comments from our lovely readers I’ll share my personal views for you now. Battlefield 3 made jaws drop, crying babies quietly stare, and every other video game look like their textures had been painted on by chimpanzees with no arms. The Faultline trailer sequence was literally stunning, and it immediately upped the standard of this year’s expected military FPS battle. It wasn’t just the fact that the Frostbite Engine 2.0 could provide rippling shafts of photo quality light and all its visual wizardry, but also because the whole setup felt a lot more ‘grown up’ than anything we’ve seen before.

The eerie silence is nothing new in the genre’s wider canon but the top notch military communications and dark soldier banter alongside the beautifully/hauntingly believable play through set pieces dimensionalizes the gritty and deadly approximation of real life warfare. Let’s face it, the trailers were more like short films, the immersion levels were through the roof and we weren’t even playing it. That’s videogame evolution, and it’s magical to witness it happening.

Then we turn to Modern Warfare 3, the new instalment in the biggest console franchise on the face of our hungry planet. The ever rolling mountain of hype and the brand power behind the words ‘Modern Warfare’ alone are enough to pretty much guarantee several million copies fly off the shelves in the first week, and yet here we are once again attentively watching the curtain being pulled up from the next game, and we recognize the signature ‘CoD touch’ instantly.

Now that alone could be interpreted as either a good thing (reliable, identifiable franchise that stays true to its winning formula) or a very bad omen…it’s more of the same with a different lick of paint on it. While the CoD IP is mostly notorious for its ridiculously huge multiplayer, neither B3 or MW3 have blown the lid off their online functionality, but yet B3 has already seduced millions of gamers with its snippets of campaign footage. What has what you’ve seen of MW3 done for you?

In all honesty (remember this is just my personal take, feel free to disagree) MW3’s gameplay debut was one of the biggest anti climaxes of the year. Infinity Ward countered accusations that MW3 was going to be running on an already dated game engine, by explaining that the whole thing had been fortified and upgraded to match new expectations, and while MW3 didn’t look particularly ugly, it didn’t deliver that visceral ‘wow’ either. The sad truth is that gamers will almost definitely be comparing B3 and MW3 side to side, and in my opinion B3 made MW3 look like a cheesey Hollywood action film. Everything suddenly looked like it was made of plastic and it underwhelmed the whole reveal.

The stuff they were showing off on E3’s stage felt like it had all been done before. We know that Infinity Ward are not the same studio they were two years ago, and EA are already storming ahead of the franchise that normally dominates the market, capitalizing on this potential weak point in Activision’s long long winning streak.

Also for those of you who haven’t heard: Bobby Kotick (Activision BIG dude) wanted to play Battlefield 3 at E3 and was refused entry. 1-0 to EA?

Comments (14)

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  1. you nailed it.  this article explained exactly how i feel.  I watched the bf3 thunder run trailer 3 or four times.  Watching it full volume on the highest resolution is breathtaking.  I couldnt even finish the mw3 trailer. Everything seemed stale, as if id done everything already in previous cod games.  Nothing really made me the least bit excited.  So DICE, at this point, I think its fair to say that you have earned my money this fall.

  2. fernandosays:

    battlefield 3 is the best this year sorry cod i m so sorry lol

  3. Alexanderbeansays:

    True that. I think that the devs of MW3 are simply ignoring the fact that they are not introducing anything new in MW3. For example: In the E3 demo, the screen was black and you hear a soldier scream “RPG!” and you wake up in your car with no one alive except for the “main character sergeant dude”. Something similar like that happened in COD 4 already when your chopper went down. The sergeant also throws you ammo for your weapon. A similar thing like that happened in Black Ops when Woods gave you the shotgun. Like…IW, Sledgehammer, Raven are 3 huge companies with alot of people! How can they possibly not come up with any new mechanics for MW3? Its like the devs arent putting any effort, theyre just playing solitaire on windows for most of the time. Dice is just 1 company and they are showing some amazing stuff. COD is repetitive. In COD series, there is repetition of the same basic dull stuff, it doesn’t challenge your mind therefore making you bored of the game. I’m still buying MW3 cuz I have a gaming PC w/ XP on it and BF3 won’t be compatible with XP but MW3 is the last COD game im buying for sure. 

  4. Dreamersays:

    “While the CoD IP is mostly notorious for its ridiculously huge multiplayer” seriously? you mean this – has been going backwards since cod4

  5. Anthony Lukenssays:

    1-0 EA FTW BF3 Ownes MW3

  6. Yup. I think, because of all the creative force lost in the lawsuit and the addition to security guards in the studio would be most intimidating. Thats not really good for your workforce you know what I mean? You know to not look like an ancient warlord with slaves. Then destroy the whole IW family by taking out the father figures. (Jason and Vince) I think it would piss off the people that are making your billion dollar game. You know don’t piss off the cheff, or he’ll spit in your food.

  7. Lefty5794says:

    Wasn’t BF3 shown on PC while MW3 was shown on Xbox 360?
    If they were both shown on console BF3 graphics would probably still look better, but not as stunning.
    I personally thought MW3 was better at E3, but then i’m not a big fan of Battlefield

  8. Apin88says:

    That is correct, mw3 seems just like mw2 with new map. I totally expect this and yes I will try bf series for the first time this fall

  9. Jaylonsays:

    BattleField 3 tears ModernWarfare 3 in half.BattleField3 has the most stunning,unbelevable graphics avalable today for concole,along with it humor,natural disaters and its communication skills make this game a winner.Taking a look at the mutiplayer online,was not a big step up so i have seen but…you cant fly jets in C.O.D.Black Opps can you? We can tell who is gooing to win this battle cant we? And this is comming from a call of duty fan,even the big boss at activision wanted to play it.

    1. Of course he wanted to play it. As a developer, you want to see the competition.
      As far as an unreleased game ‘tearing’ the competition in half, that’s a stupid statement. One that can’t be made until you actually get hands on each product.
      No fanboy here, I like both franchises for what they are.

  10. Mojosays:

    HAHAHAHA!  Are you joking?  No one won E3.  It was nothing more then a festival of sequels.  There is no creativity left in the gaming world.  A pocket PS3?  Impressive, sure.  But would I rather play my PS3 on a 42″.  Oh!  It’s got a touch pad!  So does my android.  Real creative there. 

    Let’s not forget Nintendo!  A glorified Tablet, with some buttons and a smaller screen.  Let’s not forget you can only use one of these new controller’s with their new system.  That’s going to make Party/Multi-player games fun, isn’t it?

    Of course we can look forward to Call of Duty 8, Battlefield 10, Tomb Radier 10, Halo 7, Ghost Recon 11, Mass Effect 3, Forza 4, Gears of War 3….The list goes on and on!

    Kudos to you Game developers and publishers!  Way to play it safe.  God forbid something new, creative, and innovative be released.

    I remember E3 being about seeing new hardware and software,  Getting excited about new technology.  Now it’s a circle-jerking, publicity orgy for developers, publishers, and fanboys.

    1. Porthaissays:

      You want innovative? Look up the game ‘Dust 514’.

  11. Anonymoussays:

    What you BF3 fans are really really missing is that BF3 has only been shown (up until this past Thursday night) on suped up PC rigs.  There has been no console compoarisons.

    Jimmy Fallon did finally have the game shown on Thursday nite on his show running on the PS3.  To tell you the truth, seeing it run on a console did not make me as excited as when I first saw the PC versions running.  Don’t get me wrong, it looked good, but not stunniing as the PC demos have been showing. I was amazed how the vehicles in the parking lot took such a hit in detail and curvatures. They looked plain and blocky.

    I think when all is said and done, both games will have strengths and weaknesses, and the story of each will pull the games through.

    While at E3 this year I got to see two levels of COD: MW3 running, and it was a very visceral experience, that although it has the COD look, it still looks, and plays great.

    Where I think BF3 may have MW3 beat is in the destructible cover.  Man, that kinda stuff makes a difference.

    I look forward to playing both games.


  12. JaySkillZsays:

    Has anyone played the BF3 Beta. Its horrible. A lot of campers and the gameplay isn’t that fun. Bf3 might have superior graphics to mw3 but I think that mw3 has better online gameplay and BF3 will have a better campaign. Just my opinion

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