Modern Warfare 3: Blowing Up Wall Street and Hands-On with Spec Ops

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The battle continues on the floor of the Stock Exchange, with Frost bobbing in and out of the phone banks and LCD screens responsible for millions of dollars changing hands daily. From there, Delta moves to the roof where yet another chopper keeps them pinned down with suppression fire.

It’s here where I first saw one of MW3‘s new assets in action: the Reaper drone, a computer-guided UAV that you can deploy to cripple enemy emplacements. It’s an aerial tool similar to the Predator missile in previous COD games and gets commanded from a laptop, where you can use a satellite view to aim it at enemy soldiers or vehicles.

After the Reaper takes out the helicopter, Delta plants charges on the satellite arrays that have been mucking up communications and mops up the straggling Russian invaders. After securing an exfil point for their ride away, Frost jumps into a chopper and mans a heavy gun against other copters giving pursuit. The U.S. aircraft gets clipped pretty badly and looks like it’s going to crash, but eventually prevails and shoots down the enemy birds, with the last one taking out a construction site in a fiery finish.

I didn’t get to actually play “Black Tuesday” myself when I saw it, but was able to saddle up with Bowling in Modern Warfare 3‘s Spec Ops mode. The co-op offering that first debuted with Modern Warfare 2 gets a new mode called Survival. You and another player have to make a stand against advancing waves of bad guys on one of the game’s multiplayer maps.

This year, Spec Ops will boast its own rank and leaderboards that are separate from the competitive multiplayer portions of the game. It’ll also have dedicated levels for various mission modes. But the bigger change that Survival brings is the implementation of economy and deployable assets. Each kill earns cash that you can spend on weapons or equipment, both of which can be upgraded.

(MORE: Real-Life FPS Helps U.S. Soldiers Dodge Real Bullets)

So, while you start off only with a pistol and the ability to pick up enemy weapons from fallen foes, once a round’s over you can go back to either an equipment or weapons terminal to buy new stuff. Among the gear available to purchase are auto-turrets that instantly track and fire on enemy characters. In addition, you’ll be able to buy killstreaks—the iconic perks that good battlefield performance grants you in COD multiplayer—like Predator drones or attack helicopters. You can even buy Delta Force as a back-up squad to help even the odds. All the AI-controlled assets will focus on the biggest threats first, which helps you survive longer.

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