Medal of Honor
Danger Close and DICE
Medal of Honor is the latest game in the long-running series of war games published by Electronic Arts. It’s also a poor excuse for a modern day shooter.
The game sells for $60 and has about a five- to six-hour single player campaign along with a multiplayer component which, interestingly enough, is created by an entirely different developer (DICE) with a different game engine.
The look of Medal of Honor ranges from artistic and inventive to textures that would look more at place in a game from the ‘90s. These small details really began to bother me as I realized that in a game released in 2010, my own character didn’t even have a shadow. This isn’t a game breaker, but it certainly doesn’t help make the game any more enjoyable.
Frequently I would be looking for cover only to encounter invisible walls, places you literally can’t move through even though there’s nothing visibly blocking you. Most developers have found a way to alter their game environments to avoid putting invisible walls in, but developer Danger Close apparently hasn’t figured that out.
As far as game play, the controls are like any recent first-person shooter. If you’ve played a lot of Modern Warfare or any other war game you should feel right at home. Medal of Honor’s campaign is fairly scripted and linear. You have to do things exactly as you’re told in order to progress.
I encountered one such moment late in the campaign where a Taliban soldier was actually invincible until he was able to alert enemies in the area of my presence. These all seem like cheap and easy ways to progress the story.
The game is also buggy; be prepared to reload several times since the AI characters will often freeze randomly. Medal of Honor is less of a war game and more like a war movie you’re acting in. If you don’t do things exactly right, you better be prepared to reload the game and try again.
There really isn’t a story to Medal of Honor either. Most of the time is spent running around shooting, but you’re never really given a reason as to why you’re killing. This creates a lack of momentum and incentive to attack these enemies.
Medal of Honor had a lot of potential in that they really had a chance to make a moving story for the main character. That potential was squandered fast when I heard the line “Let’s go shoot some bad guys.” In a game surrounded by controversy over using the name Taliban, I heard “bad guys” and “enemies” used much more often as a label for who I was fighting.
Medal of Honor’s single player campaign is a short, confusing, mess of a game that should’ve received more polish for such a big release.
The game play is not a complete bummer though. There were several moments that simply looked and felt awesome. It was these moments that made me realize this game could’ve been amazing if more of the game had the same polish and excitement these moments had. There are also some cool actions you can do such as sliding into cover. Even so, this game is really not worth playing just for these few perks.
The multiplayer for Medal of Honor is for the most part synonymous with the single player campaign but still feels detached due to not being able to fall prone or slide into cover like you can in the single player. The multiplayer feels fairly empty, it’s playable but not that exciting.
In all honesty, there are a lot of better things out there you could spend $60 on. Do yourself a favor and skip this one.
I give it: two stars
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