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Why Modern Warfare Gunsmith Reminds Us of a 15 Year Old Racing Game (In the best way)

by Mason Moreau 03 Oct 2019

Making customs a custom

Customization in games has been a thing for as long as we can remember. But every so often, there's a game that comes around that does it differently. Last year it was Red Dead Redemption 2, and this year it's shaping up to be Modern Warfare's gunsmith.

Weapon customization has been prevalent in Call of Duty games for a long while now, but getting a taste of gunsmith during the beta felt different. There's something deeper there, and it invoked a weird sense of nostalgia.

The bottom line is, many games have laid claim to the customization throne. When they fail it's never a big deal, but when they succeed that's a whole different story. Successful customization in games allows you, the player, to make every polygon feel like it's yours.

Racing games have always been the king of allowing players to do whatever they want to what they own in-game. And there's one racing game that we here at KontrolFreek believe to be the beginning of what changed car customization in games forever. It came out 15 years ago and it's called...

Need For Speed Underground 2

Listen, we know what you're thinking. Call of Duty and Need For Speed aren't very similar in terms of their customization options. No, you can't put neon underglow on your M4 and no there isn't an option to add full metal jacket rounds to a 2003 Mazda Miata.

Are you geared up for Modern Warfare yet? If not, make sure to check out our brand new Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Performance Thumbsticks!

When Underground 2 released, EA threw everything at us. Suddenly everything was tweakable. From car performance/tuning to paint jobs, vinyl decals, rims, tires, neon underglow, and much more. Dropping into the car customization in Underground 2 unlocked an entire universe of options designed specifically for the purpose of making these cars unique to you. We weren't playing with someone else's pre-baked cars anymore. These were ours.

The similarity here has to do with the brand new feeling that gunsmith creates. It's a feeling of snappiness and seemingly unlimited options and combinations designed specifically to take the gun that you like and make it yours. And guess what? Need for Speed Underground 2 was the first game that made us feel that way, but with cars instead of guns.

Unexpectedly, when we booted up the Modern Warfare beta that feeling came back. An old experience suddenly became new again when applied to a different type of game entirely. Once again a dev has gone to great lengths to make sure that we feel like we have ownership over the way we play.

There are more options for guns than ever before, and because of that, the chances of you having a loadout that's identical to someone else's are slim to none.

So yeah... that's why Modern Warfare's gunsmith reminds us of a game from 15 years ago.

Thanks for checking out the second post in our Month of Modern Warfare series! If you haven't yet, check out our breakdown of the Beta Easter Egg that everyone missed. Til next week, FreekNation!

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