Review by logans_run_82
"An authentic WW2 shooter, that has a feel of espionage, and action, but its not for all FPS lovers."
Well, we all know that Medal of Honor doesn't have the cleanest track record out there, but in their long crusade of supplying the market with WW2 shooters, they've managed to pull off some heavy hitters. Such as this one.
Now one of the first things that you might notice when you enter the main menu is that there's no online play. And the split screen is mediocre, but multi-player is a very small part of this game. That may be a good or bad thing depending on who you are.
For those of you who played the original, you might wanna say that its the same main espionage feel, but with many more AI units on screen, and with a bit more missions of just finding along side your men. Though you friendly AI are true at total idiots, and are worthless in every way, it does kinda get you use to the feel of them, as you will fight along side them in many of its sequels that have came out since this game released in 2002.
And the date of this release also adds to the score that I gave it. 2002 was the main begging of the rush of WW2 shooters, and the market wasn't over saturated with mediocre games, that we face today. World War 2 was a new, authentic idea for gaming. And developers really went at it. This would have been another generic shooter now of days, but back then it was the thing to for shooters (and it seemingly has been for many years!)
But to get to the actual gameplay of the game, it still holds up pretty well even after these years. It is simplistic but fun, and is a great challenge even on normal difficulty. And the weapons, though they can be hard to aim due to poor mechanics, are all portrayed as they should be, with acceptable sound effects too. Now, some of the weapons are extremely similar. such as; Colt 45. Walter P3, and the silenced pistol, (that doesn't have a specific model that they listed it with, other then generic "Silenced pistol"). All the pistols are nearly exactly the same, and the silenced pistol doesn't give you any stealthy advantage whatsoever (You do not get many chances to get a silent kill, thus what is the point of a silencer? may as well spray them with a machine gun while their not looking rather then picking off one of them with a pistol shot..or better yet, hit em with a grenade that they may be reluctant to throw back at times. other then that, the similarities of all the other weapons have enough change that you're not going around using the same gun in a different coat of paint, and that's good enough. There's many things that make up for the lack of weapons (It is lacking the M1 Carbine, the KAR-98, the Luger, and the FG-42) and the similarities that to many of them face.
Now you might argue with the face that "A gun is a gun, no matter what caliber, rang, and over all accuracy it has, they all kill people in the end. you can't change that", But this is a video game, that said you press a button and a character on screen reloads it at a professional level for you, and holds it in the right position,and has a lucky cross hair to help him out. Those of you who have handled a fire arm in real life know what I am talking about. It does take skill to know how to reload a weapon fast enough in order to avoid getting killed (very important) and holding it at shoulder length and trying to get a kill also takes alot of practise. And different guns all have different sizes, weight, length of the barrel (which can throw you off at times, for those of you that refuse to fire a gun, yet somehow know what its like anyway) and different positions of the "safety" switch, (marines are ordered to keep their guns on safety when not immediate engaged in combat) and the balance of the weapon (having to much weight in one area can be an annoyance) so yeah, if you count all those then you can say that weapons here are a bit to similar, but you should only need but a few of them anyway, on certain levels, so its not a big annoyance whatsoever.
Also, for the players of the original, the hit reactions/detection isn't as great. You shoot them in the arm, they might look like they've been shot in the chest and plop dead like that, if you're like me, then you probably don't care what they do when they die. But having it miss a shot altogether is annoying. Trying to shoot someone in the head can be somewhat difficult, due to this problem. You are always obligated to shoot in the chest area, cause the cross hairs (In combination with the poor aiming mechanics) are way to small for precise aiming. But this problem is easy to over look, its not like it'll miss every shot you throw at them. It will hit them 80% of the time. So there's no worries about that happening to often :)
But the over all saving grace of this game is the level design! These levels are truly magnificent, and fun to play. One of my favorites is Operation Rapunzel! I won't spoil it for you, but there's no other mission like it in WW2 shooters TO DATE. And there are plenty of other authentic levels in this game that are all so well designed and different from each other. They did a fine job on designing the county side of 1940's Europe. And the streets on the mission 'The Golden Lion" look actuate for the time period. There's replay value to in them indeed. Although this game didn't really do a good job when they added the D-day mission. That's the Ugly Duckling of all the missions in this game. The beach looks empty and the objectives are boring. such as (extremely minor spoilers) "Give covering fire to 4 men on the beach" you don't really need to hit someone in the machine gun nest, just fire about 5 shots in its general direction to make the fire stop, now that's pathetic. But it starts to get better during the second half of the D-day mission. Then the third level starts gets you use to the core gameplay that you're likely to face through the entire game. And and its a good thing that they did a good job on its core gameplay, cause this game is of good length, and great challenge. Through many levels might have a particular section that's boring, the over all action of this game is enough to keep you satisfied.
Now this is probably the 3rd game in the long line of 16 in the series, and you can see from the other games that it has sort of lost its original luster and shine that this game (and the original) has. If you haven't been impressed with Medal of Honor: Airborne, Medal of Honor: Heros 2, Medal of Honor: Rising Sun, or Medal of Honor European Assault, then coming back to play the original 3 is an absolute must! Cause from what I heard and played, the originals are the main source of espionage, and authenticity. This game does have similar problems that the sequels have, but a whole lot more great things in it that the sequels lack! Some of the later games came close in one category, but failed in another, and some have a totally new feature in it (See; Medal of Honor: Airborne) but still mess up something that makes it sub-par. That said, this game is your best bet for fun factor in the series if you ask me.
But what about the over all graphical detail in things? Unfortunately, this part of the game suffers on this particular platform. You'll see greater graphical advancements in the XBOX and PS2 port. However, I still prefer this platform for this game over the others. Because this has the brightest graphics, my TV hinders the XBOX and PS2 port unplayable due to darkness. But that's just my TV (My old "Sharp, SDTV") But as for the object detail, it really isn't to polished at all, there are some sharp edges on things such as Canteens (the lowest help packs that give you the fewest amount of health) and guns that you pick up look like something out of the original PS1 game. but those are relatively unnoticeable objects that you do not run into all the time. Its the character models that are behind in looks, and movements. Get up close to one's face and it'll be enough to make you vomit. Now of coarse that's exaggeration, but their face structure is a bit off. Its not like they look sub-human..they just look extremely ugly, but recognizably human =) As for the character movements, you can't bash those to much because in 2002, this area of technology wasn't really put to much use, and it never really mattered on how good the animations were. But these are just fine, their not up to par though.
In conclusion to all of this; This game is memorable enough for me to write a review for it 6 years after its release, just to remind people that it really is worth buying! The level design will always impress me, and is probably better then some of the modern shooters today. But if you're the spoiled PC gamer who thinks he has the best gaming quality over anyone else. The bad Aiming mechanics and poor hit detection will be enough to make you want to get rid of it altogether. And its lack of Online multi-player might seem a bit lonely for many of you. but if you can find this game used for cheap its well worth your money and time! I'm sure glad that I tried it out, I'm sure you will too!
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 06/23/08
Game Release: Medal of Honor: Frontline (US, 11/07/02)
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