Our “Spotlight” dedicated to Medal of Honor: Airborne (see “Igromania” No. 01’2007) contains, in particular, the following words: “Medal of Honor: Airborne is seen by us as a qualitatively new step in the market for WW2 shooters” . So it really seemed: if you put together the possibilities declared by EA Los Angeles , then an action about World War II of gigantic sizes, equipped with at least two original solutions, seemed to be. So, having flown Airborne for some unfortunate five hours and not seeing, in fact, nothing new (but having received a certain aesthetic pleasure), you are surprised to find some completely childish insult in your soul.
Airborne Forces Day
At this time, the 82nd US Airborne Division was in the center, hhm, of the plot. For those who do not know, we inform you: this elite unit was created in the years of the First World War, then disbanded, and when the States entered the Second World War, the division was called again. The paratroopers took part in the battles for Africa, then landed in Sicily, and on their combat score not only failed operation of the Market Garden, but also actively participated in the Allied counterattack in the Ardennes.
Despite the fact that there is a main character (and his name is Boyd Travers), Airborne does not tell any intelligible storyline. The only dramatic scene in the whole game is when a Nazi tank crushes a colleague’s head. The new Medal of Honor offers six unrelated missions: landing in Sicily, the very operation of the Market Garden, landing directly on German territory, etc. Each story follows the same scenario: first we sit at the briefing where the bosses Five minutes sets out the situation, then suddenly find ourselves in an airplane and prepare for the jump, then the plane certainly falls under the fire of enemy air defenses, several extras immediately die, the rest with cries fall out of the plane. For the first time, this is really impressive, but for the fifth and sixth times the focus, to put it mildly, is tiring.
The parachute jump, which Electronic Arts positioned as the supporting structure of Airborne, in fact turned out to be a simple arcade game that doesn’t require any effort from you. To start the jump occurs on autopilot. Glavgeroy, do not be a fool, he will personally run to the exit from the burning glider, will independently explode a ring opening the parachute, and without extra help make all the necessary preparations for landing. Only the final result depends on us. If you do not to do anything, then the character will crash into the face of the roadside dust, a little pokryahtit then otstegnet parachute – and forward to the battle. If, literally a second before landing, you press the “W” key, then Boyd will deftly land on his feet, receive congratulations from his superiors – and, again, into battle. In general, the processitselfLanding looks very conditional and can be seriously considered only as an interactive cutscene.
The second point of Airborne’s stated accomplishments is freedom. She is here, let’s say, peculiar. While the main character is flying to the ground, you can look around and look out for a cozy clearing for landing – not a blurred texture, but a relatively large level is spread under your feet at this moment. Theoretically, you can land at any of its points: after landing on the roof, you should immediately take a favorable position and sneak off Fritzes from the dominant height; falling somewhere in the yard, you should go to the enemy from the rear. For those who are not located in such experiments, some green smoke (practically lilac fog) carefully smokes on the ground, the landing near which is guaranteed to be safe – there will be no one near, except an ammunition box. The trouble is that the antics with “aiming” landing, in fact, are not needed.
In addition, the developers still have limited our freedom. First, the protagonist flies to the ground at a torpedo speed, so it’s impossible to reach many hypothetically accessible places physically. As a result, with all the desire to land it will be possible in a fairly small, limited area. Secondly, observing the glorious traditions of the series, Airborne is full of completely illogically constructed brick walls, which serve as an artificial barrier, restricting your freedom of movement. And only when the necessary task is issued, the game carefully creates a passage (suddenly the tank drove or exploded something).
The mechanics of the game, alas, do not have to some sophisticated techniques, but they are not in your arsenal. In Airborne, the ball is ruled by a brutal action of outrageous concentration, comparable only to the first Call of Duty . As soon as the main character unhooks the parachute lines, the task list in front of the player narrows down to the traditional minimum program: run fast, shoot straight and jump briskly. That is, to perform exactly the same movements as in 99.9% of other WW2 shooters. Every ten seconds, a dozen angry fascists fly in, so all that remains is to put pressure on the trigger.
Shooting at Airborne takes up the lion’s share of time. If in the same Call of Duty 3 (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii) we were allowed to drive cars and tanks, and the game was full of active scenes (you are hit on the head with the butt, and you knock out a rifle by tapping on the right buttons) Airborne is not that. We either mow Fritz on an industrial scale, or lay explosives.
Although the shootings themselves turned out surprisingly vigorous. Enemies, it seems, have learned to think, act not at the will of scripts and somehow react to a change of scenery. So, for example, if your squad got involved in a fight on a city street, and then you came out of a nearby alley and began to mow enemies at close range, then the Germans would immediately pay attention to you, try to regroup and focus fire on Treversovaya modest person. Sometimes, however, it comes to the ridiculous – enemies always shoot at the main character, even if his comrades broke into the tight ranks of the enemy, handing out cuffs to the right and left.
Among other things, EA loudly promised to give us the opportunity to improve almost any weapon in the game. Like, during the Second World War, every self-respecting soldier somehow upgraded the machine guns and pistols — he taped up additional clips, sawed out the barrels. We are quick to inform you that the whole upgrade in Airborne is as follows: each weapon in the game has its own “scale of experience”, as the enemies are destroyed it is filled, and when the machine reaches the next level, a new feature is automatically screwed to it. At “Thompson” the magazine’s volume from 30 rounds expands to 50, “Schmeiser” starts to beat more precisely, the gun dramatically increases the rate of fire. Such is the RPG-system.
Airborne is generally a surprisingly frivolous game. Upgrades here occur upon the wave of a magic wand directly on the battlefield, the characteristics of the weapon do not affect anything, landing is a one-time children’s attraction, health is restored with the help of first-aid kits. And when, by the end of the game, reinforced concrete uber-fascists, dressed in gas masks, appear, the atmosphere somehow slips into kitsch — you are looking forward to Lenin in a leather coat.
In this case, however, do not think that Airborne is a complete failure. Despite the fact that there is not a single gram of fresh ideas, and the declared innovations turned out to be an empty ring, it is still a very dynamic and beautiful shooter. Smooth animation of characters, bright flashes of tracers, dazzling explosions of grenades – these simple human joys are enough to run the Airborne to the end. Especially since for this you will need five hours of life from strength.