Review by Acquire
"Big Red One comes home"
Though Finest Hour captured the more cinematic and heroic element of war, this game was more fun to play. Call of Duty is back, and much better with the Big Red One.
Some might thing "Big Red One" sounds funny, hell I do. But it was actually one of the best divisions in the US army at the time. They're symbol was a number 1, but it was big and red, and very noticeable, which is where the term came from. Now this game doesn't do as good a job to capture emotions as the first did, while I played through the whole single player mode, I never felt connected or felt anything but the need to keep going. I guess this is more how real war would've been. Anyways you will play as a soldier of the Big Red One, and go through their best battles in the war.
Looks were not the best part of this game. The graphics look good, but nothing spectacular, especially for those that want to play both Call of Duty 2 titles. Considering that this is the PS2 version, the game actually still manages to look good. Rag doll physics seem to be in, and there is never slowdown, even when you're pinned down by 4 machine gunners as hundreds of men die around you. Everything has the gritty and dirty feel of war, without over doing it.
This is a straight first person shooter. There isn't anything wrong with the control part of this game, so I won't mention much of it; they are the basic FPS controls. The weapons are a very good part of this game. Although you can only carry two guns through the game, the others feel very realistic. Each one gives realistic sounds and feedback. A good thing is that there are a lot of guns to choose from and have a joy with here. There are mostly assault rifles and SMG's to shred others apart, along with heavy machine guns and stationary weapons that don't just kill, but destroy. You do get to drive some tanks and man some turrets though these are very easy, especially the tanks. All these deliver their realism even more with awesome sound. The sound department mostly consists of bullets whizzing by and explosions. The voices are always screaming to get over the explosions and do present the intensity of the situation these men were going through.
One thing that was a slight disappointment was the length of the overall game. It can be finished in a matter of days (regularly playing around 6 hours total). Extras don't require anything but progressing and beating the main single player mode (which is very easy). The extras aren't anything special either; just some very short biographies on the guys of the Big Red One, some also very short description of guns and vehicles, concept art, and some videos. Multiplayer was excluded from offline, and online is not very good. The main problem is getting into a game. The server has some serious issues where it won't let you join games, but once in, these battles are awesome.
WWII is not a new thing for video games, but Call of Duty has been one of the only series to truly capture the essence of war. This is a worthy sequel to Finest Hour and shouldn't be missed, about the only problem would be its short length, lack of offline multiplayer, and a bad online service.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 12/24/05
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