Review by Lord Hugo
Call of Duty 2: Delivers Point Blank
It would be an understatement to say Call of Duty 2 is an anticipated Next-Generation game. It's one of the most highly anticipated titles coming out for the 360. The previews really built up hype, and it hasn't disappointed, that's for sure. It's a brilliant sequel to the WW2 series, pushing past its predecessors in almost every category. Not to mention the game is absolutely gorgeous and the action really immerses you. Well, let's hop to the review!
It's easy to give the graphics a perfect score. They are absolutely gorgeous. When I first played, I found myself just staring at the guys' faces. It's that detailed. The amount of detail they've put into the game is astonishing, especially at close distance to what youre looking at. One thing I'm really impressed with is the smoke from the smoke grenades. The smoke really looks like smoke, spreading and looking beautiful. These are definitely the best graphics the 360 pumped out for launch day, and maybe beyond.
The gameplay is generally great. One thing that is great is how the guns fire. They shoot realistically: firing accurately when you pull the gun to your chest and aim, and hardly hitting when you're on the run firing. The game forces you into intelligent tactics. If you don't duck behind a piece of cover and move out, aim and fire, then that's your ass. The bad thing about cover, however, is the lack of a lean feature. They force you into cover, yet you have to expose your entire body for a shot. That really causes a lot of frustration at higher difficulty levels. The game is fairly linear as well in going from point A to point B. They do provide some alternate routes, but there's really not that much difference or many of them for that matter. The AI is a big plus. Not only are your allies intelligent, but so are your enemies. Enemies will throw back grenades, turn to the sound of gunfire, gun bash you at close range, and move away from smoke from smoke grenades. That really adds another element to the fighting. Allies, also, will throw grenades at the enemies, flank them, ask for cover and give cover, and even request smoke grenades. All in all, it makes the battles realistic and immersive. One big qualm, however, is the physics. My bullets didn't break glass, and things didn't explode from grenades. Not too big a deal, but it's something you wouldn't expect from a Next-Generation game.
A lot of First-Person-Shooters lack in this area, especially WW2 First Person Shooters, because they lend so much to the combat. Call of Duty 2 is no different. There are story elements in the game, such as conversations between people and such, but nothing really overwhelming. You get objectives and you do them, no real choices in the matter at all. The journal pieces they give on the load screens in Single Player are nice, showing an excerpt from the persons journal you play as for the day of the battle. The only thing I have to say is it does work in the game. I never found myself actually wishing for some big elaborate story line.
The Camera is very good for the game; then again, it is a First-Person-Shooter. But the FPS was good for the camera, never feeling sluggish or anything like that. The control brings it down a bit. I mentioned earlier the lack of a lean feature, even though it would be easy to map onto the current control scheme, which is a big downer. Also, several times I found myself accidentally dragging my finger from the aim button down and tapping the smoke grenade button on accident. That's part of the controller scheme, but they could've mapped regular (frag) grenades to that button instead since they're more numerous in-game.
The game has great sound. The explosions, sounds, voices, everything fits well. Peoples mouths move with their talking realistically (to some degree). But the best part is the battle sounds. Running through the battlefield, gun fire and explosions going off around you as you hoof it to your next objective. The Call of Duty team really did their best to immerse you in the battle, as if you were actually there.
Replay Value 7/10
The replay value for Single Player is about nil. There's really no reason to replay it unless you really like the games Single Player mode. There are no unlockables or anything of that sort, but the games meat for Replay comes in online. Online play can immerse you for hours and will allow the game to last much longer than it normally would.
Final Analysis/Conclusion 9/10
The game provides one of the greatest WWII experiences in a video game in quite awhile. It's an immersive game with few flaws. The online will bring people back for more, though it's not the best system I have seen. Replay Value and Story Value bring the game down, but if you enjoy WWII shooters, this is as good as they come. I don't regret playing it for as long as I have, that's for sure.
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
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