Call of Duty 3 is a 2006 first-person shooter video game developed by Treyarch and published by Activision. It is the third major installment in the Call of Duty series. It was released for PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2 and Xbox. It was a launch title for the PlayStation 3 and Wii in North America, Europe and Australia.
The single player is modeled after the Normandy breakout, where the British, Canadian, Polish, American, and French Resistanceforces pushed into the village of Chambois, France, also known as the Falaise Gap. Unlike most other games in the Call of Dutyseries, the events in Call of Duty 3 are based on a single combined campaign, with the player being switched between the four armed forces – U.S. Army, British SAS, Canadian Army, and the Polish 1st Armoured Division – and their respective characters for each leg of the story.
There are 14 campaign missions in total, with cinematics to link between each one. Each mission also contains various action sequences where players have to input button commands, whether arming a bomb, or fighting off a melee ambush. In addition, some missions also include multiple choices in routes to completing an objective.
In addition to the single-player campaign, Call of Duty 3 features a wide range of multiplayer modes for players to participate in – each team allowing up to 24 on the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360, and 16 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox in a single match. This is only in the online mode. All team game modes feature the soldiers of the Allied nations versus those of the Axis. Multiplayer features are absent from the Wii edition.
It is the first game in the Call of Duty series to introduce two different game modes. The “Normalized” mode was added to allow console players a way to adjust to the smaller kill box of Call of Duty, its expansion United Offensive, and Call of Duty 2.
On the Xbox 360, Call of Duty 3 divides its multiplayer aspect into Player and Ranked matches. Player matches allow players to invite other players into their games, but do not contribute points toward the leader board or unlock Achievements. Ranked matches put the player with and against teams of random players, and contribute towards player points and allow players to unlock Achievements.
The American campaign begins with Private Nichols banded with Corporal Mike Dixon, Private Leroy Huxley (voiced by Benjamin Diskin), the radio op Private First Class Salvatore Guzzo and the squad’s CO, Sergeant Frank McCullin in the 29th Infantry Division. After the capture of Saint-Lô, the squad is folded with the 90th Infantry Division to secure Saint-Germain-sur-Sèves.
The 90th then assaults Mayenne in order to capture its fortified bridge. McCullin succeeds in defusing the bombs rigged on the bridge at the cost of his life. Dixon assumes command of the squad and leads them to clear out Forêt d’Écouves, to aid the 2nd battalion. The squad then liberates the suburbs to secure a vital crossroads, which helps ensure the success of the Falaise Gap plan, now that the other Allied forces have finished in the north.
Nichols unit is then defending the town of Chambois from German forces trying to escape through the Falaise Gap. After much retreating and fighting, Dixon is killed and Guzzo leads the squad, aiding the Baker Company to retake the town and force the German resistance to surrender. Two days later, the squad members receive promotions and begin their march to liberate Paris.
In the British and French campaign, the player controls Sergeant James Doyle working alongside SAS members, Corporal Keith, and Major Ingram. The SAS have a rough parachute drop into France, where they link up with the Maquis Resistance, including their leader Pierre LaRoche, Isabelle DuFontaine, and a man only known as Marcel. They begin attacking a German AA position, followed by the destruction of a fuel plant.
Ingram is captured, but the SAS and Maquis are able to rescue him from the outskirts of a village, along with several Resistance fighters bound for execution. Isabelle is killed as she plants a satchel charge on an armored car. The SAS and Maquis then team up to take the fight into the rest of Europe.
In the Canadian campaign the player controls Private Cole of the 4th Canadian (Armoured) Division, led by World War I veteran Lieutenant Jean-Guy Robichaud. Robichaud commands a platoon in the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada, aided by Sergeant Jonathan Callard, squad member Pvt, Peterson, and the squad’s radio operator, Pvt. Leslie Baron. The platoon attacks a German-held ridge in a night-time operation, then capture an industrial area and holding off a counter-attack.
The platoon proceeds to clears a forest near the Laison River of several anti-tank positions and a motor pool. Baron is transferred to a Polish armored unit. Robichaud leads his unit to rescue a captured Canadian tank crew and with their help they capture the whole town. Callard is killed as he blows himself up along with a King Tiger tank. The unit then soon start helping to move more Canadian reinforcements through the town to aid the Polish struggling to defend Hill 262.
The Polish campaign revolves around Cpl. “Bohater” Wojciech, a Sherman Firefly tank driver in the Polish 1st Armored Division hunting more German tanks in revenge to the occupation of the homeland of his crew members, including Major Jachowicz, Corporal Rudinski, Sergeant Kowalski and Pte. Ulan.
While aiding the Canadian and British forces in the area, Jachowicz’s crew participates in a sweep across the French countryside, engaging German armor. Bohater and the rest of his tank crew eventually track down and destroy an infamous Tiger II tank. The Poles then capture Hill 262 and endure a heavy assault by the remnants of the German 7th Army desperate to escape the Falaise Pocket.
With their position overrun, Bohater and his crew continue to fight the Germans with Rudinski and Kowalski getting killed and later. They are joined by Canadian radio operator Baron, who is killed in the ensuing battle. After much fighting, the Royal Canadian Air Force repels the German invaders and Hill 262 is firmly in Allied hands.
Three map packs were released for the Xbox 360 multiplayer game on the Xbox Live Marketplace. The first, “Champs”, was released as a free download on January 11, 2007 and contained a single self-titled map. The “Valor” map pack contained five new maps: Crossing, Ironclad, La Bourgade, Stalag 23, and Wildwood.
The pack was released on January 27, 2007 for 800 MP ($10). The final map pack, “Bravo”, contained five new maps of which two were remade from Call of Duty: United Offensive: Gare Centrale, Marseilles, Aller Haut, Seine River, and Rimling. The pack was released on May 31, 2007 for 800 MP. The price of the map packs was later reduced to 400 MP ($5) each.
Call of Duty 3 was unveiled by Activision shortly before E3 2006. It was revealed that Treyarch would be developing the title (their second in the series after Call of Duty 2: Big Red One) which was set to release later that year.
The game would be running on Treyarch’s own internal engine, NGL. This game served as a launch title for the PlayStation 3 and Wii in North America, Europe and Australia. It was also the only major Call of Duty installment not to be released for personal computer platforms (though ports were planned yet cancelled) and the only numerical sequel to date to have been a console-exclusive game alongside Big Red One and Call of Duty: Finest Hour.
In an interview with Video Gamer, Call of Duty: World at War senior producer, Noah Heller, revealed the team had eight months to develop Call of Duty 3.