The lights are on
StoryThe story is your generic world police event where tier one American forces fight across the world to stop a group of bland and unimaginative terrorists. It jumps between two different stories, the main plot and the sub plot of the main character trying to save his marriage. Which is trying to get across the more human side of a soldier. Characters such as Preacher, Mother, Voodoo and Dusty return from the previous game. Though their characters aren’t really built upon apart from Preacher. Other characters are added to the mix but the game doesn’t do anything to make them stand out and you just end up feeling like your any other soldier. As for the villains of the game they are just as generic as the new soldiers you play as, they aren’t given any depth or your not given any reasons for their motivations. Overall i felt that the story was very half hearted, having some very good parts that were moving but just didn’t try hard enough to save it as a whole.DesignJust as the previous medal of honor the game is an a to b linear shooter that keeps you on a narrow path, presenting you with enemies to kill before progressing onwards. Each area feeling like a shooting gallery where you cant progress until the enemy is wiped out, your team mates not willing to move up and help you. I found this to be a problem as sometimes the game just would not progress as it would get stuck on a certain aspect. Such as not being able to open a door or not being able to move on to the next part of an on rails segment. During most of the shooting sequences there are few and in my opinion sometimes too many breaching segments that have a strange mechanic added on. You are presented with a wheel of different ways of breaching, more are unlocked from head shots you make over time. This mechanic seems very unnecessary, different animations for each breach would of been fine and i don’t think this added anything to the dynamic of it all. These shooting parts are broken up by on rails sections and strangely enough driving sections which were surprisingly enjoyable. The game even includes a car stealth segment where you have to escape and park in certain areas to remain undetected. The multi-player is much better this time around. Not feeling completely unbalanced like the previous where you were constantly killed by call ins. Also this time around its a lot less controversial US against the Taliban and is replaced with a multi national spec ops approach. Letting you back your favourite unit. Most of the game modes are standard fare though the home run mode is a little different as it is like a search and destroy or counter strike version of capture the flag. A new mechanic is adding to the multi-player where you have a fire-team partner. This person is able to replenish your ammo and heal you if you are wounded. They also act as a spawn point for you. This encourages teamwork but isn’t anything new as it acts like any sort of squad system from other games. It can also be extremely frustrating if your stuck with someone that doesn’t have the faintest idea of team play.GameplayMedal of honors controls work fairly well, they are pretty much standard to most other shooters with days with a few added features. Such as if you hit crouch as your running you can slide into cover on your knees or prone. There is also a leaning mechanic that feels a little clumsy and didn’t really need to be there. Sight swapping seems to be a mechanic that is cropping up in shooters lately and this one is no different. Allowing you to swap to different magnifications or to different sights. Making using the same weapon in different situations easier. The game has a nice variation of different environments from mountainsides to water logged cities and really does give you the impression that you are fighting in different areas across the world though most battles still play out the same way. I did notice that in certain segments that the difficulty would spike for no reason either leaving you not knowing what to do or leaving you in the open with no where to go and getting shot to death. This isn’t helped by an AI that more often than not likes to rush into melee with you, so when your trying to recover from being shot you dont get the chance.PresentationThe game has nice visuals for the engine that it is running on though they appear bland in some places like the weapons. Environments and in game character models are well detailed and hold up well in the in game cut scenes though some of the animations for breaching tend to not match the audio. The CG cut-scenes feel a bit out of place compared to the in game cut scenes and some of the characters look really ugly, especially Preachers wife and child. During these cut-scenes a lot of screen tearing would happen and also the sound would hang and repeat until it became unstuck. Other problems that came up was that whenever the game loaded up any of the driving levels it would change resolution and then revert back when it was finished. More often than not elements of the hud or hints tend to get in the way of what your meant to be looking at, for example when in one mission your are sniping and all you can see across your screen is the hint for holding your breath. Intrusive and not needed.SummaryOverall this game tries to improve on the previous game and does in some aspects but it lacks in others. This game is trying too hard to be something that it is not and ends up leaving you with a lacklustre story that isn’t really worth following after the first one. I would only recommend picking this game up if you have some brand loyalty or just want a generic shooter to play through as this is what this is, nothing more, nothing less.
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