The 6 Reasons to Avoid Playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (and What to Play Instead)

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The 6 Reasons to Avoid Playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (and What to Play Instead)

Key Points

  • The September 21st update for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare caused technical issues, making the game unplayable for many players.
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is expensive, with a $60 price tag and additional microtransactions ranging from $1.99 to $99.99.
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has already been replaced by Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II, which received negative reviews and only one year of support.
  • Activision Blizzard, the company behind Call of Duty, has been surrounded by controversy, including lawsuits and accusations of sexual harassment and discrimination.
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has lost its identity, with the franchise discarding its realistic warfare theme for high-tech futuristic weaponry.
  • Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass subscription service will include Activision Blizzard games in 2024, offering cost savings and discounts on in-game microtransactions.

Releasing for the very first time in 2003, the Call of Duty franchise has had a grip on the world from the very beginning. One of the most recent releases, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, has once again achieved the franchise’s unparalleled fame.

Alongside the release of the Modern Warfare title, we also saw the release of Call of Duty: Warzone. This free-to-play Call of Duty title is a battle royale not unlike Fortnite and PUBG. The two games have been run simultaneously by Activision-Blizzard, further cementing the success of the franchise.

Despite the overwhelming success, not all the news surrounding the Call of Duty franchise is positive. Recent business decisions have left the franchise with angry fans and many negative reviews.

We’re gonna discuss some of the reasons why you may want to wait before deciding to buy Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. Let’s talk about it!

#1: Technical Issues

If you look at reviews for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare from after September 21, 2023, you’ll notice a large trend of negativity. According to these reviews, the September 21st update made the game borderline unplayable. The most commonly cited issue is that the game will no longer load when attempting to play the campaign.

For those who do still decide to play the game, there is a temporary fix. According to Steam reviews, you can temporarily fix this by reducing your settings.

To do this, head to Options, Graphics, Quality, and then Texture Resolution. In the Texture Resolution menu, set the resolution to low and then hit Start the mission. Once the mission has fully loaded in, you can safely change the Texture Resolution back to the setting of your choice.

While the fix may help with the technical issues, be warned that you will need to do it every time. The game is currently in a state where you will actively need to fight it if you want to play. We recommend avoiding the game until this is patched, even if you still wish to play after this article.

#2: It’s Expensive

When compared to its free-to-play sibling, Call of Duty: Warzone, the $60 price tag is a big ask. The cost gets even worse when you consider the fact that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has microtransactions. These in-game purchases range in price from $1.99 to $99.99.

For a full list of available currency bundles, check out the list below.

  • 200 CP: $1.99
  • 500 CP: $4.99
  • 1,100 CP: $9.99
  • 2,400 CP: $19.99
  • 5,000 CP: $39.99
  • 9,500 CP: $74.99
  • 13,000 CP: $99.99

Call of Duty: Warzone also has microtransactions, but being a free-to-play game, they feel a lot more justifiable. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare wants you to pay $60 just to play the game, and a lot more money for any individual cosmetic.

It is also important to note that Call of Duty releases games on a yearly basis, and they keep getting more expensive each year. The cosmetics you purchase in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare will not follow you into the next title.

#3: The Sequel Has Already Been Released

Despite only being a few years old at this point, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has already been replaced. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II was released in 2022, and the game has overwhelmingly negative reviews. These reviews report non-functional servers, too many microtransactions, nonsensical celebrity cameos, bad progression, and only one year of support.

As we just mentioned, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II only received one year of support, because Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III is already available for preorder. This is particularly damning because Activision Blizzard had previously promised two years of support for Modern Warfare II. When compared to the poor reviews of Modern Warfare II, we have no reason to believe the same issues will not be present in Modern Warfare III.

Not only is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare now an old and outdated game within the franchise, but its successors are arguably even worse games. It is due to the disappointment of Modern Warfare II that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare still has an active player base. However, games aren’t supported forever, and Activision Blizzard is not likely to keep fixing or adding content to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare for long.

Video game controller call of duty vanguard
Call of Duty follows a yearly release schedule, meaning a brand new full-price Call of Duty game comes out every single year.

#4: The Game Has Lost Its Identity

Coming from a long and historied franchise such as Call of Duty, there is a lot tied to the Modern Warfare name. In fact, back in the early 2000s, Call of Duty already had games named Modern Warfare.

There were various sub-groups within the Call of Duty franchise that all excelled at different things: Modern Warfare covered more realistic warfare with modern tools, Black Ops offered a more futuristic and high-tech version of war, and titles such as Call of Duty: WWII offered a more historic version of war.

Despite what the Modern Warfare line of Call of Duty games is meant to represent, it seems as though Activision Blizzard has discarded this. Fans are already fearful of Modern Warfare III because trailers show off high-tech futuristic weaponry that is more akin to the Black Ops line of games. In its push for more monetization, Activision Blizzard has discarded the identity of its franchise in order to sell more currency.

#5: Activision Blizzard is an Extremely Controversial Company

Since 2021, Activision Blizzard has been surrounded by controversy. The issues began when the State of California sued Activision Blizzard, citing sexual harassment and gender-based discrimination. The lawsuit continued that top executives of Activision Blizzard were aware and involved. Former Activision Blizzard employees came forward to corroborate these claims.

After the news surrounding the lawsuit broke, the Wall Street Journal published their own report about Activision Blizzard. In the report, they accused CEO Bobby Kotick of knowing about and engaging in employee harassment. Kotick denied some of the included allegations while apologizing for others. Of the accusations that he apologized for, one was for threatening to have his assistant killed. In a later interview, Bobby Kotick blamed the issues of the company on labor organizers.

largest mobile gaming companies
Despite the frequent controversy, Activision Blizzard is one of the most successful game companies in the world.

The issues for Activision Blizzard would not end there. The company would go on to have to pay the Securities and Exchange Commission $35 million. This fine was due to Activision Blizzard’s lack of a structure to report workplace issues. Activision Blizzard also settled a lawsuit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, in which they had to pay $18 million.

The end result of these lawsuits and accusations was the total decline of Activision Blizzard’s reputation, both socially and financially. There were unified online efforts to boycott the company, and the stocks for Activision Blizzard plummeted.

Eventually, Microsoft would swoop in and purchase the company, stating that they intend to clean up the workplace culture.

#6: It Isn’t on Xbox Game Pass (Yet)

As we just briefly mentioned, Microsoft has bought Activision Blizzard. The deal was finally approved in early October 2023, officially allowing Microsoft to own the company. Despite this, Microsoft has announced that Activision Blizzard games will not come to their Xbox Game Pass subscription service until 2024.

The reason that we bring up the fact that Modern Warfare isn’t on Xbox Game Pass yet is multifold. Firstly, the game will eventually be included in the cost of the subscription, saving you the $60 entry fee. Second, Xbox Game Pass offers subscribers a discount on in-game microtransactions.

If you do end up enjoying Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and would like to buy cosmetics, Xbox Game Pass will save you money.

If you are someone who is just slightly interested in the game, we highly recommend waiting until it finds its way on Xbox Game Pass. The savings speak for themselves, and if you don’t end up liking the game, there will be hundreds more to play with the cost of the subscription. As long as you have an Xbox or a PC, it is by far the safest and most cost-effective way to play the game.

Game Pass vs. GeForce Now
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare could come to Xbox Game Pass as early as 2024.

Alternatives to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare

Now that we have covered 6 reasons to avoid playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, we are going to discuss some alternatives. The alternatives provided here will range from free to premium titles.

Halo: The Master Chief Collection

As two long-running and historic franchises, Halo and Call of Duty have always been seen as competitors by their respective fandoms. Now that Microsoft owns both of these IPs, this is no longer the case.

Regardless of whether you want great multiplayer or a great campaign, Halo: The Master Chief Collection has it all. The collection includes all of the historic Halo campaigns up to Halo 4, and a combined PvP mode.

Halo: The Master Chief Collection is included on Xbox Game Pass.

BattleBit Remastered

If you can get past the voxel-based graphics, BattleBit Remastered is one of the most promising shooters released this year. The game is slightly more akin to Battlefield than Call of Duty, but for a first-person shooter, it is one of the best on the market.

At the small price-point of only $15 and with zero microtransactions, this game is the full package for a fraction of the price.

The largest downside to BattleBit Remastered is that it is only currently available on PC.


This one might cause an immediate adverse reaction, but hear us out. ROBLOX is a game where players can make their own games, and first-person shooters akin to Call of Duty is a very popular genre on the site. While old-school ROBLOX wasn’t synonymous with quality, the current offerings on the platform can easily pass off as premium experiences.

For Call of Duty fans specifically looking for similar games on the ROBLOX platform, we recommend the following list.

  • Michael’s Zombies (Inspired by Call of Duty: Zombies)
  • Phantom Forces
  • Arsenal
  • Energy Assault
  • Frontlines

The one important thing we need to mention about ROBLOX is that, much like Call of Duty, the monetization policy leaves a lot to be desired. While we made sure to avoid pay-to-win games from the list, some do exist on the platform.

a list of Roblox games under the 'fighting' genre
The quality of ROBLOX games has improved drastically since its 2008 launch.

Halo: Infinite

While we have already included Halo: The Master Chief Collection on this list, it would be remiss to not include the latest Halo offering. Halo: Infinite is a free-to-play game with a premium campaign. The game didn’t launch in the greatest of states, but the developers have since improved it in many meaningful ways, making it one of the top shooter games of the current console generation.

Halo: Infinite is included on Xbox Game Pass.

Wrapping Up

Call of Duty is a franchise that has dominated the market since its very first release. Regardless of if the changes anger fans, the game is still guaranteed to be successful. It is due to this that many players believe the developers do not care. It remains to be seen whether or not Microsoft will be able to improve the culture and the games that Activision Blizzard creates.

Whether or not you choose to play Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is entirely your choice and we won’t judge. We believe that players should be informed about all aspects that may affect their enjoyment of a video game.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare free?

No, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is not free. The game will cost you $60 to play and also includes in-game microtransactions. If you would like to play Call of Duty for free, check out the free-to-play title Call of Duty: Vanguard. 

What happened to Activision Blizzard?

Prior to being purchased by Microsoft, Activision Blizzard was under a lot of controversy for workplace abuses and sexual harassment. Microsoft has vowed to clean up the culture of the company, but that remains to be seen.

Is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare a new game?

While the Steam store page for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare claims the game was released in 2023, this is not accurate. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is a few years old, and has already been replaced by its successor, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II. The third game in the trilogy, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III, is currently available for preorder.

Is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare on Xbox Game Pass?

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is not on Xbox Game Pass, and will not be coming to the subscription service until 2024 at the earliest. The Microsoft-Activision Blizzard deal was only just finalized in October of 2023, and adding games to Game Pass takes time and has legal factors to be considered.

How do I fix the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare infinite loading bug?

If you are attempting to play the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare campaign and are experiencing infinite loading, you can temporarily fix this by lowering the game’s graphical settings to low. Once the campaign has fully loaded in, you can safely raise the graphical settings back to where you want them.

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