Ahh, the golden memories. The golden memories that every avid Modern Combat player had was either in MC3 or MC4, not Modern Combat 5. MC4 was the perfect game for mobile platform, and definitely one of the most revolutionary.
Quick note: I didn't play MC3 enough to have a strong opinion on it.
Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour was put together by an experienced team that wanted to push the series forward. And the reason MC4 was such a good game is because of the dream that the dev team had. MC5 just seems to be put together in a very arbitrary way. MC4 was a solid game, campaign to multiplayer, graphics to gameplay.
The single-player campaign in MC4 was, in my opinion, the best in the entire franchise. MC3 had an equally good storyline, but in MC3 there wasn't as much variety in gameplay as MC4. In MC3 you find yourself just shooting tons and tons of bad guys, like in Dragon King of the Sea or Martyrdom. MC4 had a great variety, from piloting drones to exciting quick-time events and fantastically put together cutscenes. I particularly liked the two missions New World Order and Threatcon Delta. In New World Order, you were playing as the villain, Edward Page. That was new to the MC franchise. You play as him as you kidnap President Burke and make your way to the extraction point. Then, in Threatcon Delta, you play as Blake as you pursue Page in the very same environment as New World Order, and you can see what happens after the cliffhanger at the end of New World Order. Very innovative plan by Gameloft there.
Multiplayer. The biggie. Multiplayer in a game is the biggest deciding factor when I play a video game. And Modern Combat 4 has a fantastic multiplayer. All of the maps are well-balanced, and there are only two bad maps (Congress and Extraction). Gameplay was very fun, and unlike MC5, getting a kill in Modern Combat 4 feels like an achievement. The hit detection in MC4 was fantastic, the best hit detection I have ever seen in a mobile game, even rivalling the hit detection of some console games. The time to kill was fast, but not too fast that gunfights entirely depend on who shoots first. There was a great variety in terms of guns. Unlike other mobile games or Call of Duty, some guns aren't clones of each other. Every gun performs differently. Yes, the Compakt-665 was the overpowered gun in MC4. We all know that. But generally speaking, I would much prefer a Compakt filled lobby than an LGR or Bosk filled lobby. For the most part, the Compakt had its flaws, but it was a fun weapon to use from time to time. We had great gun variety. For pistols, we had a fully-automatic, moderate damage Viny Pro, an extremely powerful, one shot killing Black Mamba, and a high rate of fire, low damage Schoc 33. I personally would have preferred the assault rifles to be beasts at mid-range, the SMGs close-to mid range powerhouses, the shotguns close range annihilators, and sniper rifles unstoppable at long ranges. The assault rifles did have some problems, they were beasts at close to mid to mid-long, but generally speaking, it wasn't too big of an issue, as the OPS65 outclasses the Compakt in terms of damage and rate of fire at close range.
Back to gun variety. Unlike MC5, where the shotguns are very weak up close, the shotguns here in MC4 annihilate. Which ever shotgun you prefer, whether its the pump-action, insanely high-damage R780, the great ranged CTK-1410, or the Volkhov-12, these weapons outclass anything at close range in the hands of a decent player.
I would hate to admit it. I really would. But it is the truth. If Gameloft keeps making these quality games that they are making now, we may never see a game like Modern Combat 4 ever again. The only way you can get a game of this quality, of this gameplay, of these graphics, is to go to console. I play console quite frequently, even with Modern Combat. Before I was into MC, I would always play console or PC. That were the only games I would play. I only downloaded games like Tetris on my iPad while I played Call of Duty and Battlefield all the time on console. And MC4 comes along, and blows Call of Duty and Battlefield out of the water when it comes to aesthetics on the device and it was groundbreaking on mobile devices while Call of Duty or Battlefield (with the exception of Cod4) were not groundbreaking on console. I still play MC4, I don't think I will be giving it up anytime soon, but I'm afraid that the servers might go berserk in the near future (just like MC3) and it will be removed from the App Store. So Gameloft Montreal, please come back. Please demonstrate to Bucharest how a Modern Combat game should be made.