Two weeks ago, in a scene reminiscent of a prison shower room, I was gang raped by a group of eight grown men, and loved every single second of it. Fortunately for me, the eight men were a crew from Infinity Ward, and said rape occurred in Call of Duty 4, not in any sort of mildewy locale with multiple shower heads.
I have hung out over at Gearheads of War
, a site run by Tyler Bleszinski (brother of Cliff), since just before Gears of War came out, and play with those guys on a fairly regular basis. Tyler did and interview with IW Community Manager Robert Bowling (402)
a while back, and challenged him to play in the regular Friday Night Frag Fest. Robert graciously accepted, and then (I can only imagine) set out to find the greatest set of ringers ever assembled for this match.
The Friday of reckoning arrived. Because we had so many gearheads who wanted to play, the matches were set up as 3 groups of 8 on 8 domination, with each group getting to play two games against the IW crew before swapping out with the next group. Now before I go on, we had done some practicing, and had (what we thought) were some pretty solid domination strategies that were very effective during matchmaking matches. We were so wrong.
I was in the third and final group, and our two matches were to take place on Crossfire and Overgrown. The entire IW crew was a bunch of great guys. They were very nice and bantered back and forth with us a bit, until the game started. Then they were not very nice.
I had been warned how good they were by some gearheads in the first group who I played with while waiting, but I really didn't believe them. That is, until three grenades landed (one hitting me in the head) and exploded simultaneously right as I was about to capture point "B". Everything went horribly wrong from there. IW ran in teams of at least two, and if you got one of them down, the other one simply cleaned up. Our communication fell apart and they took over the point closest to our spawn ("C") and boxed us in the blown out building near "B", where we spawned and died for the rest of the game. They all had the Frag x3 perk, and I swear that they are all grenade bots. Their grenade placement was flawless, and their teamwork was the best that I've ever seen.
After the first match, we returned to the lobby, where our side was noticeably quieter, and I'm sure I mumbled something about them being part cyborg or something. Then the second match started up on Overgrown. Not much better here honestly. I did have the rather odd luck of running across the same guy about ten to fifteen times, and pretty much every time we went heads up, he won easily (I did kill him a whopping two times!). I found out after the match that he was their head play tester. We lost huge (I want to say 250-50 ish), and I was once again in awe of IW's teamwork and knowledge of their game.
After the second match we bantered around a bit, traded some friend requests, and thanked IW for a great time. They are truly a great group of guys, and it was a very cool experience to play against the developers of one of my favorite games. They don't just make games, they are most certainly gamers. Many thanks to the Infinity Ward crew for taking the time to play with a few regular joes. I think that this may have been the most fun I've had playing CoD4, simply because I was in awe of the other team's playing. I actually started giggling at one point during the first match because of how many times I died.
Infinity Ward has now officially taken my award for "Coolest Developers" from Bungie's hands (Sorry Bungie).