Call of Duty 2: Big Red One (Gamecube) Review
WWII games, you either love them, or you don’t. I’m firmly in the second category, WWII games and I just don’t click. It doesn’t matter if it’s Call of Duty or Medal Honour, it just doesn’t spark my interest.
I do, however, like Battlefield 2. So putting aside what I think I don’t like, so I approached Call of Duty 2: Big Red One with the good memories of BF2 and not the disappointments of the latest Medal of Honors.
So what is the Big Red one? The Big Red one is the North Americans 1st Infantry division; they were the first division to see action in World War 2.
During the game, you follow in the footsteps of one soldier through the Big Red One’s campaign from North Africa, to Sicily, France and to Germany. You watch you and your squad develops and changes over the time line of the game and the game really is like paying respect to these men, which is great.
The game features two main types of gameplay with on foot missions taking up the bulk of the action, however, during the on foot missions there is plenty of turrets and gun emplacements for you to man even AA Flak guns too. There’s also a mission aboard a Bomber which took you away from the ground and was quite enjoyable.
The second mode of gameplay is in tanks, I must have missed a cut scene because I cant remember why your character that is in the Infantry is driving a tank but he does.
The tank missions are a good break from the first person shooting however you dont get the same sense of desperation or mate ship when you up close with the Boys. The missions are of a good length too with checkpoints often incase you stuff up and you dont stay in one place for two long your always moving which is good as there is lots of different locations to see.
The Graphics for BRO are pretty good for the time we’re in now, While it may not have all the detail of say Resident Evil 4 it in no way looks bad, the character models are very well done but its the environments which score top marks with all of them not only looking authentic but war torn, the opening prologue is set in a burning France with planes flying in the air, smoke everywhere, buildings, tanks on fire its really gritty and even authentic.
There are a few issues with invisible barriers which sometimes get in your way which detract from the atmosphere because of all of a sudden you’re walking and bam, there’s an invisible wall. The instances of this are rare but it does happen. Two other niggles I had was that when a grenade was thrown there was no visual indicator to know where is was coming from just your teams mates yelling Grenade! and two It could be just my eyesight but when shooting people from a distance it was hard to tell if they were actually dead, I suppose there camouflage was really good.
Of course, the graphics don’t make the entire atmosphere of the game, for that you need sound and good sound, which I am please to announce Call of Duty 2 has tons of. Music first off and for what there is of it, its very good; the upbeat drumming military sounding music sets the mood very well. However when the action heats up it quiet down mainly seems to disappear and thats when the sound effects kick in, the gun sounds are really meaty, the cars and tanks sound just about right although Ive never seen or heard a WWII tank so I couldnt tell you if they are Authentic but they sound good none the less. Voice acting is also top notch with actors from the Band of Brothers TV show.
Call of Duty 2 has typical console controls, which work well and dont overcomplicate things, Tank control is a little hard to work out first but in 30 seconds you have it down pat.
So the Story is good so what about the Multiplayer? Well, you’ll be saddened to know that the game features no multiplayer modes what-so-ever. The Xbox and PS2 get online however so you would expect we would get Split screen? Nope we dont, howeve,r this is not all bad as half the experience of playing COD2 is the story and the narrative, I think if there was Multiplayer and especially Split screen it would just be a bland shoot-em fest.
So should you buy Call of Duty 2? If you’re a WWII nut then yes its a great Console WWII game, however, if you got a Xbox 360 or a PC that can run it get those versions, I havent played the X360 one but the PC one is very pretty. Howeve,r there is nothing really terrible with this game just a few things letting it down and then of course no multiplayer.
You have to weigh up if you’re an Xbox or PlayStation online player, are you wanting to play this one online, if so you won’t be playing it on the GameCube.
Big Red One will only appeal to those who are fans of the WW2 era gameplay. It features older and slower guns and isn’t as fast paced like the TimeSplitters franchise. You have to appreciate the time, and what the men of the Big Red One team went through to enjoy the game. Big Red One is a good game with only a few flaws, but because it’s on the GameCube you’re not getting online.