Thursday, July 23, 2009

Battlefield 1943 review


I awaited the release of the game along with lots of others and that lots filled up the limited servers upon launch and made me and others sad. But as people were about to lose their wills and hopes it was finally accessible for the larger crowd and it was a great time to finally have fun with an impressive Xbox Live game from the developer who made Battlefield since 1942 with Battlefield 1943; and no, there were more than two games in the franchise if that's what you are jokingly thinking.

With 1943, you would expect a sequel but simply put it's not as it's more of a reimagined greatest hits of 1942 where the game uses the current generation "Frostbite Engine" that powered Bad Company and only featuring three main classic maps set in the Pacific Theater of War (Iwo Jima, Guadalcanal, and Wake Island). There are on the European campaign maps from the original in sight but with the possibility of downloadable content, we can hope for the best.

1943 primarily relies on the signature Conquest mode where two opposing teams capture and defend bases and rid the enemy spawn count, although a similar and additional mode and map called respectively Air Superiority and Coral Sea (which was unlocked in the initial weeks of the release) is featured where it's fly or die on mandatory dogfight situations. But Air Superiority is not the only mode to feature planes as players of 12 on 12 can drive easily controllable tanks, jeeps, and rafts to get into the fight as soon as possible; but as a Battlefield game you can be surprised with exploding deaths resulting with no vehicle when respawning and settling with on foot movement to a control point. Even if so, it doesn't feel boring as there is sprinting grabbed from Bad Company and the maps are more condensed for instant action.

With the instant action, instead of a complex squad system with multiple weapons to select, like the free Battlefield Heroes there are three classes which in some cases are a combonation of the removed ones; as the rifleman has a semi-auto rifle, a rifle-grenade launcher, and additional hand grenades; the infantryman is prefferred for closer combat with an sub-machine gun, a recoiless rifle/rocket launcher, and as well as hand grenades with the benefit of repearing vehicles; the scout is the ghillied-up sniper who also has some close-quarters combat with the pistol and swords.

In a graphical standpoint, it's impressive for an Xbox Live Arcade game where they make use of the "Frostbite Engine" for the common current generation techniques such as bump mapping and soft-shadowing but most notably the destructive environments; although it seems more stylistic instead of beneficial unlike Bad Company. While great looking the detail of the game is less prevalent as opposed to Bad Company and the very bright color palette can be a turn off for a game based of a very violent war; and with the lack of blood still common within the franchise, explosions and the rag-doll deaths miss the needed spark of brutality. I want to see someone's head get decapitated when I chop someone with my katana!

Sound in Battlefield is always great to listen to and 1943 continues the format with convincing gun fire and vehicle motors; and distant those make it far interesting and helpful when finding the battles. The limited music is great in what it delivers as it's unforgettable to hum along to the main theme.

1943 still has the essence of a Battlefield game; large scale multiplayer carnage with vehicle bombing! For $15 on both Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, it's a steal and if you have been playing since 1942 or just wanting to have a quick match with 23 other people, Battlefield 1943 is indeed the pure answer.


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