Reviews by mchaza

70

Multiplayer Impressions

mchaza | Sept. 25, 2011 | Review of Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad - Digital Deluxe Edition

Sick of Run and gunning? Sick and tried of players absorbing round after round of bullets only to to think his down to pop back up in seconds full of health to take you down. Well RO2 provides for those looking for a more hardcore experience to online gaming, we aren't talking about the hardcore mode from call of duty, this is boardline realistic. While RO2 isn't at arma 2 levels they strike a balance between Realism and not so that while it can be unforgiving the battles are tense and exiting and matches can be a blast. The first thing you notice is its a WW2 shooter, yea another one is what you may be thinking, but with wave another wave of modern warfare games is can be refreshing to handle a bolt action rifle without a sniper scope on the end. The next thing you notice about RO2 Online is its attention to detail, since its a mutliplayer game each map has been crafted to the finest details making them stunning arena's to look at, but the maps aren't the only ones getting attention, RO2 on the box feature is fully modeled tanks with interior and all so when you are controlling one of the metal beasts you can look around in one of the 4 different positions you can man and look outside from inside the tank using the different hatches at your disposal offering great views but great sniper targets as well.

First Person Shooters are the head genre of this generation and its most important feature is the gun play, and yet again Tripwire have done a fantastic job in this department, each weapon have there own feel and sound prefect so when you fire a shot you are going to experience the closest to firing a real authentic WW2 weaponry from the Battle of Stalingrad. Another standing feature is a first person cover system, and take any 3rd person cover system and put it in the first person perspective but unlike killzone 3 with your head resting ontop of the cover, in RO2 you take cover so when you blind fire you are really blind firing. From cover you can lean from all directions and peak over and around objects as well as leap over them, its a solid inclusion and adds a great feel when running from enemy mg fire into cover to spray back with some blind fire.

Like mentioned above the maps have been designed to great detail, each of the 10 maps are real locations of early 1940s Stalingrad like the infamous Grain Elevator and Palov's house all modeled to scale for you to fight over playing one of the 3 available modes, the classic territory where you fight over specify points and advance once taken, firefight which is classic team death match and countdown a one life scaled down territory mode but most of the time you will be playing territory as majority of the servers will only have that mode. And speaking of servers, remember those and browser lists as well, RO2 is a fully dedicated server affair with the ability to host your own and set it to the setting you desire.

While i have said nothing but praise i must alert you of the current situation, it appears that Tripwire were trying to beat the modern warfare rush and have released the game in a not so great state, crashes and ineffective unlock system (yes there is one but what doesn't have one these days) and stats and a array of glitches that will get in your way, but overall they dotn affect you enjoying a quite a few games. There is also some balancing issues when it comes to the German Assault class getting MKBH42 assault rifles that are super dominate weapons on the battle field.

While there is quite a few issues, and 40 dollars might be a bit steep for 10 maps, 3 modes, 2 tanks and a handful of weapons as well as a tutorial/sp mode, Tripwire are going to be delivering more tanks and vehicles (they take 3 months to make) as well as there is full mod support with 2 converison mods already under one with the Rising storm Pacific front converison mod already in production before release to complement the array of other mods which are to follow as well. So you can buy now and enjoy the game until other shooters come out, play some of those then once you have grown tried of that, come back to a array of mods, game being fixed and more tanks, maps and vehicles to enjoy which will make this game more valuable then the upcoming big shooters who will demand payment for DLC that Tripwire is offering for Free.

40

Single Player impressions

mchaza | Sept. 18, 2011 | Review of Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad - Digital Deluxe Edition

First thing to say about RO2 single player component is to say, that if you are looking at RO2 for the single player then this game is not for you. The reason why isn't because the single player is terrible but its not your average single player experience, now take it as a good or bad thing but to sum up the single player for RO2 its basically a extensive tutorial mode.

When you start you have to first play though the German Campaign before fighting it out on the Russian Side. Each mission is set up as following; first you are greeted with a animated cutscene, these are nicely set up and get you in the mood with readings of diary entries from actual soldiers in the war, following that you are given a briefing from your comander on your objectives, each objective plays out like the multiplayer mode "Territory" in which you either attack or defend certain objectives. As Attacker you are to assualt a series of buildings or objectives one at a time, while as a defender you must hold off the attackers from taking a position for a certain period of time, if the attackers achieve you push back.

After you get you have been breifed you are popped onto one of 10 Multiplayer maps where you basically play a slightly tweek version of Territory mode with bots. Instead of the attackers having a certain amount of tickets(respawns) basically you and your squad of 12 have to attack all the objectives and is reinforced every 2 minutes. First thing you will notice when you start playing in is you will die, and die fast. RO2 is on the realistic side so dying will occur as bullets deliver heavy damage, when you do die however instead of being shot back to the loading screen to repeat the mission you take control of one of your squad mates.

When you spawn you spawn in one of the classes, you aren't given a choice for which class you get, but in later missions you are put into the roles of squad leader or platoon leader. But dont worry each gun in RO2 is a joy to use, which each having there own personal characteristics and handle and sound in there own way realistically, with each bullet being fired gives off the same punch as what it would in real life.

Despite the ability to die easy with high gun damage, when attacking its very hard to fail the missions in more than maybe 1 or 2 goes. The reason for this is two reasons: the first is that since you change squad members, if you happened to be the last squad member unless you squad member has ran into hostiles before you take control all you have to do is wait for the reinforcements timer to go down and have all you squad mates to spawn back. The other reason why it is easy is the AI, the AI is pretty dam stupid. While yes they move in squads, and take up defensive positions where one MG can wipe out your squad. Too many times you will see enemies 1 by 1 run towards your position to be shot right away like there fellow squad mates before them, they will also consistanty run into the open and also run to melee you over shooting you.

Your squad mates as well haven't been too bless and more then offen run into the open despite under fire and teammates dying around them, they too will run up to enemies to melee displaying funny moments especially on staircases were both side AI would only bash each other in melee. During later missions you are given the power to direct your squad mates, most of the time you wont bother because the AI are too dum to adapt to your requests when in heated moments, and because you can single handily wipe out the enemy by yourself.

Other then those problems that break the experience alot of the time, if you take the single player as a tutorial mode then its worth a play though, not only will you learn how to use the weapons but you will learn how to use squad and platoon leader commands, learn the maps and the core gamemode as well. I should also mention there is also some training missions where you are trained in the different classes and weapons which is a plus, then they are followed up with putting them for use against bots. So overall for a tutorial mode the single player is a great tool for those who need to bush up on there mp skills before hitting it up against the more experienced players. Also if you haven't played a mutliplayer WW2 shooter, or a realistic one or even a online shooter at all. Then playing though the single player would be vital experience to gain to make sure the online experience isn't so brutal. And if you are reading this months post release then i recommend playing it first as well because by then there will be lot more experienced players, more clan work and team work occurring.

So to sum it up, flawed but when taken as a tutorial mode, its great. Dont buy it for the single player, buy it for the multiplayer because the AI issues, its length which isn't that long and its difficulty make it a mostly boring experience.