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Review: Medal Of Honor: Vanguard - PS2

by Steven Williamson on 29 March 2007, 11:03

Tags: Medal of Honor: Vanguard (PS2), Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA), FPS

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As dull as double history on a Friday afternoon

Predictably, the core gameplay hasn’t changed much since previous games in the series and the bulk of the action involves moving up the battlefield and taking out the European forces. Enemy soldiers react intelligently to your attacks as they perch on balconies taking pot-shots, snipe out of windows and dive behind barricades. To take them out you’ll throw a carefully placed grenade, whip out your own sniper rifle out and send a soldier tumbling from a balcony or plough through them with a few sharp blasts with your Thompson sub-machine gun. Then, it’s onto the next objective point to clear a house or town square of a few dozen enemies or defend a point or building from wave upon wave of attack from the advancing foot soldiers. The missions are direct and linear and the map designs are badly thought out, inevitably leading to a barricade that blocks the road ensuring that you have to back track and find a way around (they’ll only be one way) where you’ll need to take out a few more soldiers in the process.

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Occasionally, the sparkle and tension that was aroused in previous Medal of Honor games does surface, for example when you’re pinned to a wall by rapid gun-fire and you need to work a way out of the situation, but the buzz soon wears off as you discover that these moments are few and far between.

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The usual assortments of historically accurate weapons are available, such as the MK42 and the M9 anti-tank rocket launcher, along with standard and stick grenades and the controls are easy to use and the weapons handle well. There are also a number of upgrades allowing you to add sights to weapons or extra ammo slots. There’s nothing wrong with neither the dynamic of shooting nor the AI of your soldiers and the enemy, but it’s still not enough to save the game from being a below average shooter which lacks the tactical depth of similar titles.

Animations are decent enough, with soldiers tumbling out of the window when you shoot them or flying across your peripheral vision when you lob a grenade into an alleyway, but graphically the game is looks decrepit and deficient of any character.