Gameloft has come a long way as a company.

Founded in 1999, the Paris-based startup quickly became known in the mobile gaming world for pumping out shameless knockoffs of big-name franchises found on other platforms. Now in 2014… well, that’s still their M.O., but the games have really been ratcheted up in terms of quality.

Modern Combat 5 is one of their newer releases, and right from the trailer it’s pretty evident what they’re going for here: In MC5, Gameloft is attempting to emulate Call of Duty for mobile gamers. An ambitious undertaking, to say the least. So how well does it perform?

One element they’ve entirely left by the wayside is storyline. There are guys with guns and two sides to group them into; there’s just not much going on here. Players looking for a more immersive FPS experience would do well to steer clear of Modern Combat, but considering the lack of available alternatives, the watered-down premise isn’t too much of a drawback. Besides, the strengths of MC5 more than make up for its shortcomings in plot.

Review of Modern Combat 5 by Gameloft

Graphics Trump Controls & Premise

So far, there are four available classes to choose from: assault, heavy, recon or sniper. As expected, there is a leveling component along with skill points, but interestingly, players can level up in the multiplayer modes as well.

Speaking of multiplayer, Gameloft has made a genuine attempt at emulating a proper FPS environment, but there are some serious limitations. There are still only a handful of multiplayer maps available, and of course, touch controls make precision difficult.

The graphics are where the game truly shines. As with some of its previous titles, Gameloft has been able to create a near-ideal marriage between engaging gameplay and stunning visuals. You would be hard-pressed to find a similiarly-themed FPS for mobile devices that can compete with MC5 in the graphics department.

Interestingly enough, MC5 offers no in-app purchases. Unlike just about every other Gameloft title that baits users into their freemium model, Modern Combat 5 can be purchased outright from your mobile marketplace of choice. And at under seven dollars, it may be well worth it to give it a try. It can’t compete with shooters available on proper consoles, but as a mobile game, there’s really no equal.