Oltman at El33tonline writes:
"The latest entry in the Call of Juarez franchise, The Cartel, is a sequel in name only, and feels like two steps back for the series. First of all, it is not set in the Wild West - the biggest draw card for the original. Secondly, it has none of the charm and flair the other games in the series have. No, this game is strictly a shooter with drugs and loads of swearing to try and pull it into the modern era, but it doesn’t succeed."