It’s own worst enemy
As a fan of tactical first-person shooters, I was admittedly pumped to witness what should’ve been an epic battle between two triple-A military-themed shooters in Medal of Honor: Warfighter and Call of Duty: Black Ops II. Both promised big-budget thrills and hardcore multiplayer options that would serve as new high-water marks for the genre, and early looks had me convinced that EA had a shot at knocking Activision off their perch.
And now that D-Day has finally arrived? Well, to put it simply, it didn’t quite work out that way. Like a platoon pushing up a heavily fortified beach, Medal of Honor: Warfighter comes off like a well-intended op that met with one too many points of resistance. Its primary enemy? Bugs, bugs, and more bugs—as in, enough unfortunate uglies to make you wonder if you’re playing a digital rendition of Starship Troopers. Despite a hefty day-one patch, you’re going to encounter some serious AI pathing problems, clipping issues, and network glitches galore that mar an otherwise intriguing set of ideas.
Nowhere is this more evident than the game’s multiplayer segments, which offer a lot of elements I actually liked. Map design is organic and confined, the bullets-to-bodies ratio is deliciously realistic, and the mix of modes here should offer a great deal of replay value. But then you run into a bug that causes the objective to show up as a giant white box, or the game refuses to keep score properly or end after the set number of rounds, and you’re left wondering if that goal of reaching store shelves a month before COD was better than calling a spade a spade and polishing this thing until it was ready.
Luckily, the single-player campaign isn’t as overrun by coding issues, and I was genuinely impressed by the more realistic, tactical approach to combat that showed off the design team’s efforts to pack in plenty of empowering split-second gunfights and a good deal of functional variety to boot, giving off the vibe of what being an elite military operative is really all about.
In the end, though, Danger Close’s promise of an authentic experience is vastly overshadowed by the game’s lack of polish, resulting in a game that could (and should) have been much better than the Warfighter we ended up with. It’s a shame, because the campaign’s tactical focus is a real breath of fresh air, but unless they patch the s*** out of this thing, most of you will be left wondering whether Medal of Honor got out of basic training.
SUMMARY: A lot of great ideas that fall flat on their face in their execution keeps this game from getting anywhere close to what it potentially could have been.
- THE GOOD: One of the generation’s best attempts at a big-budget tactical shooter
- THE BAD: Countless bugs keep it from reaching its true potential
- THE UGLY: The thought of being a fly on the wall during MOH’s postmortem
Medal of Honor: Warfighter is available on Xbox 360, PS3, PC, and Wii-U. Primary version reviewed was for PS3.