The highly anticipated sequel in the Bad Company series is here…the one we have been hoping would change the series into a serious competitor for the ever playable Call of Duty series and the newly introduced massive shooter M.A.G.. Does it live up to that kinda hype?
As most of the people I game with know, I played Battlefield 2 on the PC, and I have always considered it to be the highest level First Person Shooter ever. But before I go on a rant about how fantastic that game is to this day (had to say it at least once!), let me just say that Bad Company 2 is NOT yet a full port of Battlefield from PC, but it is one step closer.
Single Player Campaign
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 starts you off back in the World War II era to play through a story that gives you some background to what you end up playing through when the game really starts going. I thought this was kinda cool as it reminds you (well, me at least) of how much I hate playing with World War II weapons in video games at this point and helps to appreciate what you’re about to get.
After that’s over with, the real game begins and you begin your trek through the game, battling through stage after stage, wave after wave of enemy patrols, artillery, snipers, helicopters, and booby traps. The game’s story brings you through the lives of a small squad of guys, the Bad Company of course, who are on a special operations mission that has a few twists in the story that aren’t exactly unpredictable. It is, however, an entertaining story overall and I did laugh a little here and there at some of the things you hear the guys in your squad say when you’re just creeping through the jungle or wherever the game takes you.
As you go through each stage, the mini-map in the corner of your screen identifies different areas where special weapons or items may be hiding and waiting for you to pick up. Sometimes they’re there because you’re about to need them to blow something up that your gun can’t handle, sometimes they’re just there to add to your kit, either way you need to find em before you can use em.
A little tip, pick up enemies weapons from time to time if it looks like a gun you’ve never had before. Once you pick up a weapon you’ve never had it gets added to your arsenal for you to use at a later time. The game gives you a storage area that looks identical in every stage to keep your stuff in or change what your setup is at the beginning of most stages. It’s easy to spot and usually let’s you know you’re about to head into a whole new storm of enemies.
One thing that needs to be said about the game is the quality of the audio. If you’ve got surround sound or headphones with surround sound, turn that shit up and get ready to be rocked! I had an ear to ear smile when I was calling in air strikes and hearing the booms echo throughout the area you’re in and hearing gun shot echoes ricocheting around buildings. You really get an awesome feel of the game when you experience the sounds this game throws at you. With the controller rumbling and thick sounding explosions and action happening all around, it keeps your head in the game and your hands gripping that controller.
The other cool and somewhat unique aspect to this game is the destructible environments. You can pretty much blow everything the hell up, which completely makes up for it’s average graphics. Compared with all the other games coming out right now I’d say the graphics are fine, just not amazing. Trees come down, buildings collapse, houses turn to dust, it’s pretty much as realistic as you’re going to get in any game today. Some other games have semi destructible environments also but they don’t go to the same extent as this game. This comes into play a lot as you can blow your enemies cover out of the way and then light em up when they’re exposed. But be careful, your enemies can do the same thing to you, so make sure you try to find cover behind things that are more sturdy or perhaps less likely to be gone after they end up in the sights of your enemies grenade launcher!
Last but not least, the vehicles in the game, single player campaign game that is.
You get to jump in a couple of jeeps which are pretty much what you would expect from them, you get to shoot a grenade launcher while you drive which is cool but to be honest, the driving parts don’t last all that long. ATVs are ATVs, basically a little faster and more nimble than jeeps, and of course the tanks. The tanks are pretty sweet in this game, the firing mode is a beautiful visual that you have two zoom modes to spot your target through. You can watch the shell travel through the air until it smashes into your target. The last real vehicle you travel in or get in is the helicopter, most times you’re on the machine gun on either side of it but there’s a section of the game that let’s you get into the cockpit of an attack chopper to mow some people down. All I can say is, I really hope this is a teaser for things in the multi-player mode, cuz you can fly around a chopper in Battlefield 2 on PC (there I go again!) and shoot at people from the air like that, and I was really hoping Bad Company 2 would finally bring the air combat to online first person shooting. So far I have yet to see it and I hope I just haven’t found it yet since there’s definitely more than one player I’ve come across that I’d love to put on the candid camera of a TV guided missile!
Overall, the single player campaign is fun to go through but I was a little surprised at how short it was though. You can definitely finish it in one sitting if you’ve got a couple hours to kill, I ran through it on the Normal setting and only got stuck in a few places that really didn’t take that long to get past.
I think Bad Company 2 is going to appeal to the kind of gamer who wants a little more depth and strategy to their game play experience online rather than the “run in and blast everyone” feeling you get with Call of Duty with it’s smaller sized maps. Although with that comes a slower feel to the game as a whole. There were a few times where I felt that perhaps the game was feeling a bit slow, but you have to keep in mind that snipers can be lurking in the woods or ambushes setup, so you’re going to want to creep around a bit anyway.
I have yet to really play the online multiplayer mode enough to write a full opinion on it so I’ll be saving that for the next post!
If you’re a hardcore FPS player, I do recommend checking this game out, at least run through the campaign for some easy achievement points and a chuckle, you just may want to wait until the price drops since you’d probably get more mileage out of $60 at a bar than this game…. well… maybe not.
Bottom line is, it’s a fun game, it just didn’t shake the earth for me as I’d hoped.
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