Thursday, March 31, 2011

ArmA 2: Reinforcements

First off, if you don't know what the ArmA series is, I would totally understand. Its a game with very niche appeal. Produced by Bohemia Interactive, a developer based out of the Czech Republic, the game is, in essence, a civilian version of VBS2, a military sim used by several major armed forces, including the Australian Army and the Canadian Army, and the US Marine Corp. The ArmA series is a follow up to the popular Operation Flashpoint: Cold War Rearmed series released in 2001. Featuring massive maps, players take up several roles in combat, from the lowly infantryman, to tank commander, even helicopter and jet fighter pilots. The sheer variety of choice and mission types shames most other military games. The latest in the series, ArmA 2: Operation Arrowhead, was released in June 2010, and features the fictional country of Takistan, which resembles Iraq and Afghanistan's bastard child.

ArmA 2: Private Military Company, included in ArmA 2: Reinforcements.

ArmA 2: Reinforcements, set to release April 1st, is a combination of two Operation Arrowhead expansions, featuring the British Army and Private Military Companies, respectively. For those who already own the expansions, there is little reason to purchase this new set. It has no new features. However, for those yet to pick up the series, this offers new players unique and engaging storylines, far superior to the ArmA 2 original. New players be warned: This is not Call of Duty, or Bad Company 2. Mistakes are punished in almost instant death, and while failing a mission does not automatically end the campaign, it does effect your ending. Often, engagements are realistic, and you may not even see the enemy who kills you. However, good use of the controls( easier said then done, I'm afraid) and available cover will see you through most fights. Flying a helicopter or airplane is a blast, and while difficult to pick up at first, are rewarding once figured out. I'd recommend a joystick, or 360 controller, which makes flying easier. Firing a hellfire rocket at an enemy tank miles away using an unmanned drone controlled from an Apache, is quite simply put, something literally no other game has.

ArmA 2: British Armed Forces, included in ArmA 2: Reinforcements.

Multiplayer is also rewarding, and well worth the effort. Clans and groups of players, vary from hyper realistic, enforcing ranks and rewarding good team work, to much more casual pick up and play games. The PC Gamer server is one of the most popular, with its more lax and less elitist approach to new players. Missions range from Co-Op games featuring at least 10+ human teammates, and straight up PvP games on the massive maps. A mic is recommended, it just doesn't feel the same without one.

The editor, easy to understand, but hard to master, allows players to make their own missions on large maps. The community has many talented mission makers, and you can download whole campaigns made by players.
They also make third party "addons", with everything from atomic bombs to zombies covered. Trust me, a military sim game with zombies is actually pretty awesome. 

ArmA 2, and the whole series, does have its faults. Until recently, the AI has been mixed. They make hilariously bad decisions, and a drunk driver can drive better then they can. This has been fixed in a recent patch. The ingame missions and campaigns are complex, and if one bug happens, the entire mission can be totally screwed. This also has been fixed in patches. The patches are prepackaged with ArmA 2: Reinforcements.

Final word? I'm not going to give this a score out of ten. I'm not even going to say your going to like it. Your either going to love it or hate it. It fills its niche wonderfully.

No comments:

Post a Comment