Review by bloopo

"A bit of this, a bit of that, a bit of the new, and a lot of the old......"

You are a green beret, one of the American army elite, you have been tasked to uphold order in Cuba's first free election, and track down the drug cartel responsible for financing and equipping the rebels. Can you handle it?

Gameplay:
I have to say this is a lot like the original, but it does have a few improvements which are very noticeable in the gameplay, for example the radar only shows enemies near to the player, in three levels of closeness. You can do everything you could do in the first game, crawl, crouch The main menu is very polished up, with nice graphics to help you traverse the many menus. The ingame map menu is also a lot easier to use, and the general game has much more fluid controls. Another great addition is the option of voice recognition technology, with a USB headset. It mostly works in the way SOCOM does. You pick a team, you pick an action, you execute the action. The only problem is the multiplayer ingame chat, I'll talk more about that later. A nice addition ( to outdo the XBOX) , is that you have a short cutscene of the aftermath and the clearup, its not really needed, but it is nice.
8/10

Graphics
Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. I should have bought an XBOX. The graphics really let down what would be a really good game. If you watch a enemy far away through your scope, it looks like he's jumping because the framerate is so bad. Saying that, when you fire a grenade at the floor the smoke effects are much cleaner than the XBOX.
6/10

Story
As usual you are the ghosts, silent, swift, and invisible. You job is to safeguard the first free elections in cuba,(Island Thunder campaign) and track down the drug cartel equpping the rebels with weapons (Jungle Storm).For a Tom Clancy game, the story lacks a lot of volume that has been in his other games, no plot twists, no good/bad renegades, nothing. Just a straightforward plot. Although the background information on the characters are well done, and the mission breifings are pretty well written.
7/10

Sound/Music
The sounds are very well done, you can even pinpoint which way the ememy shouts are coming from, (which is useful when you're standing right next to a guy and don't realize it until you're dead). The radio chatter from your teamates is also quite a nice addition, although shouts of, ''Got one!'' and ''He's history!'' can break you concentration one in a while. The music is also good with very solemn music when someone dies and fast paced when you're in the middle of a huge firefight.
8/10

Multiplayer
Online and offline multiplayer is good, lots of bonus maps so you never get bored. Lots of game modes (defend, firefight, mission, etc.). There's even an online ranking system. But there are a lot of flaws, such as not being able to voice chat because the bandwidth does support it ( there is a cheat to activate it though). Another flaw is the maximum number of people being only 8 instead of 18, (another problem with bandwidth I think).
7/10

Replayability
Whatever anyone says, you're not going to play the singleplayer more than once or twice. I just gets too tiresome, although the multiplayer should keep you going for some time.
6/10

Levels
Very well thought out. Not a lot of repetion here, if you've never played Island Thunder, you're in for a treat with both Island thunder and Jungle Storm campagins and bonus levels from games throughout the series.
8/10

Buy or Rent
If you're going to play offline singleplayer, rent.
If you're going to play multiplayer offline, you might want to buy it. If your going to play online multiplayer definitely buy it.

Conclusion
It is a lot like the first game(s) but if you don't mind, or haven't played them this is a must have, with the voice control and re-vamped controls and gameplay. I bought it and I'm happy.
8/10


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 04/15/04


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