31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
Shiny graphics, antiquated gameplay,
This review is from: Call of Duty 2 (PC DVD) (Video Game)
I'm a big fan of first person shooters, especially WWII based ones. But sometimes a game falls far short of the hype and I fear that Call of Duty 2 is one those. I played and loved the original Call of Duty and bought the sequel because of that. Except for better graphics & scripting, there really aren't that many advances in game play to be found here.
Like its predecessor the in-game experience is more like a concentrated war flick than reality. The game contains three distinct campaigns where you play as a Russian, British or US soldier. The game itself borrows heavily from Saving Private Ryan, Band of Brothers and Enemy at the Gates. If you've seen any of those then you know what to expect. Let's not beat around the bush here, the Pointe Du Hoc level is such a blatant ripoff of Saving Private Ryan that it screams lawsuit. Despite the ripoff clichés throughout, the production is very high. For each campaign you unlock more levels as you progress. The graphics engine has obviously been overhauled and looks very nice. Some levels are very well designed and the detail in the soldiers and levels is excellent. But if you were expecting swaying trees, destructive scenery, doors that you can kick open, foot prints, gravity or anything else – forget it. The scenery is basically a maze to hem you into the level. Aside from scripted effects, and weapon pockmarks, your ability to interact with it is zero.
So the game is a lot more graphically advanced than its predecessor, but the “feel” of the game is virtually the same. Each level consists of a series of objectives which you must complete in order to finish it. While reaching for the objective, scripted events such as bombs go off around you, soldiers shout, and you hide behind walls fighting a machine gun nest or some other obstacle. Your fellow soldiers are pretty dumb although they do kill some enemy for you. The enemy themselves also suffer from spawn-itis, appearing from nowhere (often infinitely) until you overcome them. Once you do, you advance, trigger the next wave and repeat.
Some levels are extremely intense and well designed, others are boring invisible rail shooters. The best levels are those that open up a bit with several paths to the same objective, or where you must defend some position. But there are far too many levels where you plod from one crate to the next along a preset route. One Russian level actually has a visible rail - you must run the length of a field telephone cable which bizarrely goes down tunnels, over buildings and straight through numerous enemy emplacements en route! I wonder if the dev team put that in as a joke. You certainly won't be in any doubt where you are meant to go.
Multiplayer mode is actually distinct and IHMO much better than the single player game. I question if anyone used to Enemy Territory, America's Army or H&D2 would think that much of it but it is very well executed. I also witnessed some suspiciously accurate players through the player cam. No one is that good unless they are cheating. Perhaps they were since the game has no obvious cheat protection (e.g. Punkbuster).
Some other points about the game. It's very short and it won't take you more than 8 hours to finish it. Such an inadequate length screams “expansion pack”, but I won't be biting. The game also has some insidious bugs. There were a number of occasions where the script “stuck” midway or the save point never fired so that you couldn't advance or if you did you just died and kept on doing so forever. The only solution was to restart the level from scratch to fix the issue. Finally, why is there no German campaign? It's absurd to not include one even for reasons of political correctness.
So to wrap up. If you like arcade style WWII games with nice graphics where you don't mind walking the invisible line then you might like Call of Duty 2. For others, this game will feel old-fashioned despite its graphics. There is little strategy here, no depth. You point, shoot, move forward and repeat.
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Initial post: 1 Apr 2008 22:04:29 BDT
A. Smith says:
The level in this game is NOT Omaha Beach which is from Saving Private Ryan, that was the one where the Americans were really really slaughtered, in CoD 2 you play on a beach head along the coast from Omaha, it is not a rip off of Saving Private Ryan, if you want to play Omaha play Medal of Honor Allied Assault (PC) or MoH Frontline...
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