Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39
Buy On
  1. Nov 8, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 concludes the trilogy with a solo campaign that goes beyond my expectations, and a multiplayer with subtle yet efficient revisions. It boasts better balancing and takes into account the supportive players more than ever compared to the regular solo guns blazing hero. Quite comprehensive, it also re-introduces the beloved Spec Ops mode, and the launch of Call of Duty Elite grants him the best available service in that category. Even though in terms of production values, and scope of the competitive multiplayer, Battlefield 3 harms Activision's champion, it remains a title that is firmly anchored to its traditional strengths, and doesn't get lazy. The lovers will be ecstatic, the haters gonna hate.
  2. Nov 10, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 is perfection when it comes to story and gameplay, and it's only going to get better as more DLC arrives and the game is refined and balanced as the designers analyze real-time data from all the matches being played.
  3. Nov 9, 2011
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 brings more intensity and more of everything than the previous installment.
  4. Nov 8, 2011
    I'm glad to say the multiplayer remains addicting and is more balanced than ever.
  5. Feb 10, 2012
    There's a tangible insistence from gamers that this series needs to evolve, but it seems unwarranted when it still leads the FPS class. The engine's definitely in need of an overhaul, but when it comes to thumping set-pieces and addictive multiplayer design, Modern Warfare 3 is still in a league of its own.
  6. Playstation: The Official Magazine (US)
    Jan 4, 2012
    As a complete package, Modern Warfare 3 takes the cake. [Jan 2012, p.67]
  7. Dec 16, 2011
    Quotation forthcoming.
  8. PSM3 Magazine UK
    Dec 1, 2011
    The solo campaign is fun but bombastic to point of being bewildering, but the rest of the (gargantuan) package is typically life-consuming stuff. [Christmas 2011, p.96]
  9. Nov 15, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 doesn't bring a lot of new stuff to the table, but it has refined single-player and multiplayer experiences to the point where they are as slick as any Hollywood production.
  10. Nov 11, 2011
    A perfect example of a great fan service to the community. Activision has heard the players and has created an extremely balanced product that will appeal more to hardcore and casual.
  11. Nov 11, 2011
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is full of deep, engaging multiplayer and campaign military shooter gaming, so it's easy to recommend.
  12. Nov 8, 2011
    Familiar but hardly boring. The control remains top-notch, the audio is excellent, the developers should be commended for squeezing every last drop out of that engine, and the entertainment level remains high throughout. The campaign is too short (no surprise there), the AI is too erratic (and weird things can still happen when playing), and the story is a little uninspired. But when it comes to over-the-top thrills and plenty of "oh good goddamn" moments, the campaign brings the heat.
  13. Nov 8, 2011
    Despite its flaws, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 takes the fantastic series we've come to love over the years and iterates on it with great success. The multiplayer is hands-down the best it has ever been, with more features, more modes and a ton of new levels and ways to interact via Call of Duty Elite.
  14. Nov 8, 2011
    Everything fans may expect. A frantic and incredibly fun multiplayer with tons of options, game modes and unlockables, and also very well polished, and an intense campaign that concludes a story which started with Modern Warfare four years ago. The formula is aging - although it works as well as ever, its visuals are stagnating, but this is still a must-have for those looking for direct action.
  15. 90
    In a single-player campaign that goes a bit over-the-top at times, it's a relief to see that the action is scaled-back with Soap and Price often enough to ensure that these characters receive the billing they deserve. Elsewhere in the multiplayer, Infinity Ward was always going to have a hard time replicating the impact of its package from two years ago but it's managed a rock-solid, if slightly conservative offering for this difficult third album in the Modern Warfare series.
  16. The big surprise isn't that it serves up another great campaign, but that its take on Modern Warfare's world-conquering multiplayer may be the best yet. With Spec Ops and Survival mode, this is one hell of a package, and sees off the trilogy with a bang: not much has changed, but this is as big and beautiful a game as ever.
  17. Nov 8, 2011
    Gameplay-wise, it's essentially the same game; that is, the best online FPS, an exciting and frantic experience. It offers several game modes, new weapons and balances the perks. Also, the competitive and the cooperative experience in Spec Ops and Survival has been greatly improved. And it has the best campaign yet in a Modern Warfare game. Another headshot from Infinity Ward.
  18. 90
    Modern Warfare 3 doesn't reinvent the wheel by any means, but there's no denying it's a damn good action-packed blockbuster, and maybe the best Call of Duty to date.
  19. Nov 8, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 doesn't do anything new, but it also doesn't do anything wrong. For better or worse, this is a slick and well-metered trio of modes that make an entertaining package, but Sledgehammer Games and Infinity Ward are simply looking to augment previous games rather than expand the series into pastures new.
  20. Nov 8, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 meets expectations. The core elements of multiplayer and the campaign remain fundamentally unchanged, but the game serves as a great example of how many subtle tweaks can add up to an improved overall product.
  21. Nov 9, 2011
    Feels like a true sequel to the original Modern Warfare in every way, and banishes the memory of MW 2's sorry campaign. The multiplayer is still shockingly playable but it's not a huge leap over what's come before. That said, COD fans are going to love this.
  22. 88
    Largely feels like an iterative title...This isn't to say that Modern Warfare 3 is at all a bad game-it's an attractive and polished effort with tight controls, addictive multiplayer, and the sense that one is truly on a battlefield, rather than carrying on a miniature war behind the scenes.
  23. Official PlayStation Magazine Benelux
    Jan 2, 2012
    The biggest positive about COD has nothing to do with gameplay or graphics. It's the all-inclusive social service Elite. Activision has learned a lot from the likes of Facebook and Twitter. You get loads of ways to connect to and interact with friends who are playing the game. [December 2011, p.54]
  24. Nov 22, 2011
    It's all too familiar to MW2, and the multiplayer hasn't really changed either.
  25. Nov 9, 2011
    A great first person shooter, but at the same time a formula that starts to feel dated with this iteration. Modern Warfare 3 is an off-line spectacle and another splendid multiplayer game.
  26. Nov 8, 2011
    A worthy successor, spectacular, yet slightly problematic when it comes down to its AI. As MW3 offers a great experience and a strong multiplayer mode, it can be recommended.
  27. Feb 1, 2012
    By sticking to the series' strengths, Modern Warfare 3 delivers some of the best competitive, cooperate, and single-player shooting in the business.
  28. Nov 28, 2011
    Some will be disappointed by the fact that MW3 is not a drastic departure from previous iterations of the series and that is a very valid criticism. MW3 still offers so much content and still proves to be one of the best online experiences around. MW3 is a game that will certainly keep you busy until next year's release.
  29. Nov 16, 2011
    This time the single player campaign has definitely taken a backseat as it doesn't manage to offer the thrills of the previous installments. On the other hand, its excellent multiplayer will undoubtedly maintain the interest of the fans until the next installment.
  30. Nov 13, 2011
    This game plays well but there's a big lack of innovation. The multiplayer has shown some improvements but furthermore the game is exactly like you would expect.
  31. Nov 10, 2011
    A small evolution in multiplayer and a definitive end to the story. Despite being a solid, well-rounded experience, I felt there wasn't enough difference or progression in use of technology to really rate the game higher.
  32. Dec 28, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3, while still an excellent thrill ride in its own right, feels far too similar to MW2 or even Black Ops for my taste.
  33. Nov 15, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 still has the great, spectacular gameplay the Call of Duty series has become known for and Survival is a fantastic addition to an already very attractive package. It's just that Infinity Ward doesn't manage to surprise us anymore and graphically... well, let's just say that the engine starts showing its age.
  34. Nov 18, 2011
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is exactly what we expected, and depending on your stance on the series that's either good or bad.
  35. Nov 15, 2011
    While it is abundantly clear that this game doesn't strive for innovation, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 gives players an overall entertaining game and delivers exactly what fans of the series want.
  36. 80
    Modern Warfare 3 might be "more of the same", but that is not entirely a bad thing as it is a copy of a great game. The MW3 team has delivered a satisfying conclusion to the story introduced with the first Modern Warfare game, brought some great additions to the game's popular multiplayer and co-op modes – but the lack of innovation or real change means that the game is the least enjoyable game in the trilogy.
  37. Nov 8, 2011
    It will be yet another go-round on the same rollercoaster. And this time, to enjoy it fully, you won't have to measure up at a sign that says "you must be this obsessed with multiplayer to ride this ride."
  38. 80
    Sure, not much has happened in terms of gameplay, and if you've played any of the prequels you'll know exactly what to expect. But that doesn't stop Modern Warfare 3 from being a really entertaining piece of military action with excellent multiplayer to enjoy.
  39. Nov 8, 2011
    Modern Warfare 3 doesn't reinvent gunpowder, but sticks to the recipe of the previous games in the series. With a decent story and good multiplayer it's a game worth playing, but the lack of willingness to add improvements in gameplay show a laziness often found in a complacent game series.
User Score

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 5207 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Nov 8, 2011
    To the people wondering if Modern Warfare 3 would take a hit due to the 40+ staff of Infinity Award leaving, look no further. The answerTo the people wondering if Modern Warfare 3 would take a hit due to the 40+ staff of Infinity Award leaving, look no further. The answer sadly, is yes. It has taken a huge hit. This review is primarily focused at the multiplayer (which I have loved both (COD 4: MW & MW2).

    Unfortunate to say MW3 is nowhere near as good as the previous games in terms of multiplayer, with the major drawback being the map design. With 16 maps included on the disc you'd think there would be atleast a dozen of good quality maps, instead you're met with 16 small, maze ridden maps that have no flow whatsoever. In my opinion there are about 3-5 bearable maps, the rest are so poor even the maps from Black Ops outshine. I seriously think when the **** hit the fan at IW all the map designers left because the 16 on offer are truly awful. Pretty much all buildings are locked out and everything is basically flat, there are no areas to cover your six and it's completely geared toward the Rambo COD gamers that run around like blue arsed flies shooting and running constantly.

    It is a severe disappointment,. I was expecting this game to not match the quality of the previous two games but even then I was still majorly let down.

    This is the worst COD MP I have ever played, and that includes COD2, COD4, W@W, MW2 & Black Ops.

    This is a completely truthful opinion from a big fan of the series, unfortunately it seems that it is now time to leave it for dead (or atleast go back to the awesome MW2).

    Seriously, the maps are truly awful. I am selling this game as soon as I have finished the campaign.
    Full Review »
  2. Nov 8, 2011
    It's very sad, that people give a developer credit for lazy work. Half of the sounds, equipment, perks, guns, and only one new attachment areIt's very sad, that people give a developer credit for lazy work. Half of the sounds, equipment, perks, guns, and only one new attachment are in the game. 80% of the killstreaks are the same. And you always the get the felling "I have done this before". Survival is sorry attempted at zombies and fails flat. The same COD formula is use, Level up, get guns, unlock the same attachments from every call of duty, and rinse repeat. Sad really, this game will not move the industry forward but millions will buy a half tried effort. If any other game did this it would get bashed to crap. Save your money Full Review »
  3. Nov 8, 2011
    Disappointing on all fronts. It's a reskin of a 2 year old game with a multiplayer map pack and different singleplayer that's riddled withDisappointing on all fronts. It's a reskin of a 2 year old game with a multiplayer map pack and different singleplayer that's riddled with stupidity and cliches in bulk while still being insanely short

    I don't understand how Activision gets away with doing this to people. I understand it's fun to some gamers and they like the series and that's fine, but just throwing money at something because it's fun is selfish and they need to tell Activision with their wallets they're tired of getting ripped off every year.
    Full Review »