Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
Electronic Arts is entering the First-Person Shooter community with Medal of Honor:Allied Assault, a title which plays during World War 2 and is using the Quake 3:Team Arena engine. Quite a promising setup seeing how well Return to Castle Wolfenstein did and as usual, Electronic Arts doesn’t disappoint.
In MoH:AA you have to complete several missions ranging from the usual shoot everything you see through sniper-action to stealing documents and blowing up buildings. Although the storyline is quite entertaining, the main focus is defenitely on the gameplay and graphics.
The graphics are not as good as RtCW which plays in the same era, but 2015 put in some nice details that make you forget all about Gray Matter’s FPS, one of them being trees that actually move with the wind, something I haven’t seen in a FPS up until now. The leaves of the trees move up and down, possibly hiding an enemy or blocking your sight and that’s something that is really unique in a shooter. Up until now the best we got was trees that didn’t look like being made out of lego-blocks.
Other things like the levels where you have to go through the woods in the dark with fog making it hard to see anything also help create the desired atmosphere of tention and suspense. I can assure you that when you’re crouching and suddenly some German starts emptying his sniper rifle on you, you get the scare of your life.
The AI is amongst the best we’ve had so far. For once the opponents actually take cover when they see you and don’t stand like statues when their mate has just been sniped right next to them. Another AI point was scored when I noticed that the enemies don’t keep standing around when you start throwing grenades at them. You’ll hear them shouting “Grenade !” and duck for cover. I must admit that it was a real relief for me to notice that MoHAA isn’t just another one of those standard FPS games.
That it isn’t standard is also proven by some of the missions. This is the first shooter ever where you get to replay the invasion of Normandy and have an idea on how the Allied forces must have felt when the doors of the boats opened and the Germans started shooting like hell at the oncoming forces. You’ve got a good possibility that when the doors open, you can start again because the first bullet instantly hit you in the head. Nope, this game isn’t for sissies
2015 did a great job on the atmosphere and although throughout the game the colors are kinda dull (always darkish and they didn’t seem to find the full color palette it seems) the sound is amazing.
Next to the normal sound effects of weapons and voices you have bullets flying around your head, your feet making different sounds depending on the type of soil you’re walking on and your breath changing when you are tired or hit. And that’s just a small part of how the atmosphere is created.
So are there any negative points to be given to the single player part of the game ? Actually not really.
There are a few minor graphical glitches and there’s one moment when a dog suddenly out of nowhere starts biting your feet, but other than that I didn’t really find anything bad in particular except if you count in the ending of the game which is quite a disappointment (no, I’m no going to tell the ending, just that I didn’t expect it at all…)
All in all, MoH:AA is a terrific game and if the ending (which is just plain disappointing) would have been a bit more spectacular this game would have had an almost perfect single player experience.