Battlefield: Bad Company 2 - Unlockables
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is the big action blockbuster. A captivating FPS that does its best to amp up the action to deliver all the thrills you have come to expect from this newly found franchise. Bad Company’s name is about to change, so get your FPS senses ready because the Bad Company has arrived.
When beginning to formulate this review, I was going to dodge the obligatory reference between the ‘Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2’ and ‘Battlefield: Bad Company 2’. However, the more I think about it, the more it seems like I shouldn’t. Openly in Battlefield, 'DICE' references and makes fun of Activision’s shooter (not by name, but you will get the picture), so I think it is fair to say, it is on! The comparisons are undeniable, which isn’t necessary a bad thing... if you liked the "Modern Warfare" spin on 'Call of Duty.' Where as 'Bad Company' strayed away from ‘Call of Duty’ in its original release, it seems like they changed their mind, and have decided to do their own version of an overly dramatic war shooter.
Low Chance of Success... Perfect!
In this instalment of Battlefield, the old crew is back in the fray for another round of action-packed gunplay. In this suicidal mission, you will be fighting through various environments in the world, making this trip more exotic and interesting than before. The plot, which doesn’t get overly heavy, keeps the humour rolling while adding several twists and turns to keep things interesting. 'Bad Company 2' has the boys in a race against a warmongering terrorist to apprehend a top-secret super-weapon, before he can use it on the U.S.... and that is really about it, and really what else do you need? 'Bad Company 2' keeps the action heavy and the plot wafer thin, never stepping on each others toes. 'DICE' made it super easy to jump in and feel like one of the gang, even if you haven’t played the first game.
All They Need is a Back and Metallic Grey GMC Vandura
All 4 members of the original 'Bad Company' are present in 2, along with a few new secondary cast members. The personalities in the Company are just right, and seem more mature for the task on hand. It seems like 'DICE' intentionally tweaked their “personalities” down, which makes the game feel less forced. Not to discourage everyone who loved the crew from the original, Haggard is still loudmouth stereotypical Texan patriot, “Sweets” - Terrence Sweetwater is the talker, and “Sarge” - Sergeant Samuel D. Redford keeps it all together with strong leadership skills and an unwavering conviction to the cause, and like before, you will be playing as Preston Marlowe. For a group of offbeat characters, they can be quite charming, even when slaughtering hundreds of oncoming militants.
Straight and Steady
Tweaking things more, 'Bad Company 2' also steers the campaign down a linear road than before. This isn’t a bad trait, but it does force it into more uneasy comparisons with the massive ‘Modern Warfare 2.’ Like ‘Modern Warfare 2,’ Bad Company switches up the adventure quickly with some diversity between defending, vehicle, and assault missions. This goes along with equally frequent location changes, and new set pieces to explore every half hour or so. This rightfully quickens the pace and is more focused for the player. However, I missed the small about of choice the original presented, as it was far more wide-open. The battles in 'Bad Company 2' have the illusion of space, but you will likely be forced to stick to one or two roots to be successful.
No Team Rainbow Here
One aspect that is missing from 'Battlefield: Bad Company 2' is the ability to control your squad. Not being able to delegate your teams movements means that you are at the mercy of the A.I. Thankfully, Bad Company 2 self-sufficient cowboys are justly precise and intelligent. Although, I encountered a few situations where I would have liked to place them around the map (Chapter 9) for a better tactical advantage. I can't help to wonder how much a little 'Rainbow Six', or 'Brothers in Arms' squad action would go over in Bad Company. In a game that is based on squad of elite soldiers, why not give us a little more control over the Battlefield?
Into the action, you will want to hear about one of 'Bad Company 2' most stunning features, its uncanny ability to make destroy the environments-- labelled “Destruction 2.0”. The ability to blow apart your opponents cover is nothing new to gaming; however, the level of destruction in 'Bad Company 2' is unparalleled. Now this is not anything new, as the original 'Bad Company' had this tech, and other games have done this on a comparable measure (or close to it), but the real story here is how it affects the multiplayer portion of the game with live thinking players behind the cover, or wielding the power to destroy it. That is when the "Destruction 2.0" aspect of the 'Frostbite Engine' really starts to shine.
Blowing apart a fence that your enemy is cowering behind is fine, but the real fun comes when you start blowing apart the walls, and foundation of a structure until it comes crumbling to the ground. This use of destructible environments are wild, and its one that constantly challenges the player to adapt and evolve with the destruction around you. This means you so-called “safe-spots” in the game aren’t so safe, and that favorable compact cranny of a house you have perched to ambush unsuspecting noobs, well, it might not be the best idea when you see the treads of a 'M1A2 Abrams' rolling around the corner. This dynamic creates a lot of excitement during the game, and no matter how you play, you will likely find yourself falling in love with Bad Company 2’s level of destruction.
The other half of Battlefield is the online portion of the game, and this is where 'Bad Company 2' really starts to shine. It is not that the single player campaign is not fun, because it is, but it is nothing close to the thrill you get when you are battling for control online. It was actually hard to put the controller down to get to this review, its addictive, intense and polished. Finally, after several hours dissolved online, I have taken a break to pen my thoughts on Battlefields’ Multiplayer.
Following the lead of other titles, Battlefield endorses the use of a progression system. The progression system hands out online experience points depending on their actions on the battlefield. The more objectives and kill-streaks you achieve the better rewards you will reap. The points disperse depending on the class you played in each round, with the vehicles acting a separate classification. The classes have been downsized from the original game providing four options (Assault, Engineer, Recon, and Medic) for the gamer to choose when they spawn into the action. Each class has their primary and secondary weapons along with two slots for gadgets, and a weapon modifier. The classes are diversified enough that things never get boring, and you always feel as you are making a good progression online. From the online privates, to the razor-sharp generals, 'Battlefield: Bad Company 2' will like hypnotize you, like it did me, if you're one for online shooters.
Another point to the multiplayer is how fast the action is, and how 'Bad Company 2' does a great job keeping the momentum rolling. During the four different modes (Rush: Defend and Destroy Objectives, Conquest: Capture and hold flags, Squad Rush: Two Squads head to head, and Squad Deathmatch: Four squads—one vehicle) the action never lets up. Spawning is done quickly, and given the fast-paced nature of the game, you will be in and out of areas, vehicles, and danger multiple times in one life. As the community grows you can actually see the game evolving, although, it hasn’t become as challenging as ‘Modern Warfare’ for a new gamer to enter. The map size helps in this cause, giving new players lots of open room to try all the classes and vehicles. On the flip side of this is a ‘Hardcore’ mode that makes the action more realistic by removing elements from the HUD and increasing the damage done by gunfire.
Everything, but that GMC Vandura!
Speaking of vehicles, ‘Bad Company 2’ is loaded full of some classic standbys, and some fun additions like Quad Bikes and Jet Ski’s. Since Bad Company 2 consists of only two factions (Russia vs. the U.S.), you will get an assortment on each side. The Americans have the slight advantage in the Air, and Sea, while the Russians have more ways to get around quickly, and more tank variations. However, this advantage is not solely unique to each side, as enemy vehicles can be captured and then used against them. One of my treasured moves is to vault on a quad, ignoring the enemy gunfire, head into their base and steal one of their sweet tanks. It's quick and easy, and goes to show, how crazy it can get online. The motto “anything goes” really applies to the strategy in 'Bad Company.'
Supporting the NRA
The weapons are what you would expect, which ends up working out beautifully. Each class has over five unique weapons to utilize, along with special abilities. The Assault Kit has you fancy weapons like the 'Bad Company' standard, the ‘XM8 Prototype.’ The Engineer has some rapid-fire weapons along with the ability to fix up vehicles (very important); the Medic is leveled with a bit of everything, and obviously the ability to heal. The Recon has a wild assortment of shotguns, and Sniper rifles including the highly accurate ‘GOL Sniper Magnum.’ Most of the weapons carried over from the original game, so they should be familiar to Battlefield fans. The array of weapons can feel a little underpowered at times, but the overall balance feels right. Lastly, we can’t forget the always awesome "knife-kills." Knifing someone in 'Bad Company 2' will take them down in a single blow, and to add to the humiliation of getting shanked, you snatch their personal dog tag for display in your statistics. How's that for permanent bragging rights?
'Battlefield: Bad Company 2' comes armed with a heavy arsenal and some bad attitudes, and delivers another solid shooting experience that will please fans of the original, and dare I say it, the “COD” clan as well. The single player campaign might tweaked a little too close to the 'Modern Warfare' feel, but it is still highly entertaining as it shoots you down its barrel.
The real story in 'Bad Company 2' is the multiplayer, because it rocks! The multiplayer is 100% solid, and something all FPS fans need to check out. It is easily one of the best online experiences currently running, and judging from the popularity of its first week out, this will be a strong option for the years to come. So what are you waiting for? fire up your console of choice, and join the fight... comrade.
Reviewed by Downtown Jimmy | 03.10.10