First things first, I am a massive fan of Call of Duty 2 on the Xbox 360 and I simply jumped for joy hitting my head on the lighting when I finally completed the game on Veteran mode (the hardest difficulty setting).
Usually I am satisfied with just playing through the normal settings, but again the achievements system spurred me on to complete the game in this extremely challenging offering. Yes I adore the Call of Duty franchise, although with such a massive hit in my eyes, Call of Duty 3 had some very large and muddy shoes to fill.
Graphically the game oozes beauty. The visuals are just stunning and far exceed that of its predecessor with lush sections of grass, high quality characters and explosions that really make you feel you are in the middle of something immense.
The weapons feel very different as well, but not in a bad way. The Trench gun is no longer a cheap way of getting kills face to face and instead feels very weak in comparison. Every weapon seems to reload differently and sounds probably more accurate to the actual real life counterpart.
Single player is even more frantic than ever before with more explosions, more vehicles, more people and more of pretty much everything else you can think of. The levels are all based around France, which is a bit of a downfall as you can forget any other locations, but the variety within the same setting makes up for any loss you may feel.
Online Call of Duty 3 is almost unrecognisable and resembles more of Battlefield 2 in the way you select a class of soldier, which in turn dictates what you are armed with. Again in online on the previous title, I loved the simpleness and close up action, but Call of Duty 3 is more about space and tactics, which happily works incredibly well. Adding vehicles to the mix such as tanks, jeeps and motorbikes really does change the dynamics, but I am not quite convinced yet whether they were really essential to online. Time will tell!
Overall I am very impressed with Call of Duty 3 and look forward to many hours spent playing this game online and offline. However I still will keep Call of Duty 2 for its own version of online gaming just to have that close up face to face battle feel again.