Playing this game in multiplayer with a couple friends over Skype or Ventrilo is actually a genuinely fun, deep, and engaging experience that requires patience, strategy, and some pretty good skill with the FPS genre.
However, playing this game by yourself will definitely cause a blood vessel in your brain to burst.
When I played the game in multiplayer mode with two other friends, it was an absolute blast. Sure there were some tedious and slightly annoying moments; but overall the sessions were pretty enjoyable. If you and your friends can work together and keep your heads on straight, then this game is definitely for you.The multiplayer is fantastic as it offers a lot of replay value and kept me and my friends coming back for more.
I mentioned earlier that there were some annoying parts. Well, one of them was that even though we were playing on the “normal” difficulty, and we would receive checkpoint saves during missions; whenever all of us were killed off the game would completely restart the mission from the beginning. This is a gigantic pain in the ass because the levels are massive, and there are tons of objectives that you typically have to walk/run to and they are usually a damn good distance apart from each other.
I’ll give an example using the shittiest drawing ever:
Okay. So we complete objective A. And then we hike our asses all the way over to B, complete it, and then hike all the way over to C. Alright. Great. So now we backtrack past B and head to D. But the shit hits the fan shortly before D and we get killed. Shortly after completing objective C the game informs us that we reached a checkpoint. But when we die before reaching D, the game does not load the checkpoint. It instead decides to take a giant shit on us and completely restart the mission from the beginning.
The game looks pretty nice, I don’t really have any complaints about the graphics engine.Although on some levels a really thick, orange fog sets in like it’s the setting of a Romero zombie film.
If you have the patience for a couple minor bugs, and the rather high learning curve and difficulty level that this game brings; then you’ll love jumping into a game with a few friends. If you’re impatient and prefer something similar to Modern Warfare 2 or Halo, then you’re probably better off staying away from Operation Flashpoint.
Anyways, on to the singleplayer.
The AI completely takes away from the experience.
The bullshit robot responses and orders that everyone gives also takes away from the experience. “ECHO, NINER, ONE ZERO F ALPHA, MOVE TO GRID, DELTA, Z SIX FOXTROT”
And that’s how your character says almost everything. The only time any of them sounds even remotely normal is when they are being shot at and they yell and shout.
Returning to what I said earlier, in most of the missions there is a lot of ground to cover and a serious lack of vehicles. In most of my game sessions whether it was online or offline I ended up having to trek for what felt like miles and miles across the maps to finally reach my intended destination. There were times when it didn’t feel like I was playing an “intense and highly tactical FPS” but a simulation of the Native American Trail of Tears.
Most of the time I spent walking and running to the next objective, only to be instantly one-shot killed from several hundred meters away by a nearly invisible enemy. At this point the game would reload to the beginning of the mission and not the checkpoint, and I would fill my diaper with an aggravated shit.
Now that I think about it, I think this slightly less shitty drawing is more accurate:
The game also has a ton of menus, and a good number of them seem to just be there for looks. The menu I click through at the beginning of the video shows the loadout of your character, but you can’t really do anything with any of it. You can just hover your mouse over the icons and get a brief description of what a gun does, or what a first aid kit is used for. Yeah.
Anyways, the multiplayer is great. But if you’re looking for a rich and rewarding singleplayer experience you’re looking in the wrong place. Because Dragon Rising’s singleplayer is just plagued with shitty bumbling AI, and kind of a lame story that’s more of a backdrop for the action than something that should be taken seriously or even really paid attention to.
Come for the multiplayer. Don’t even try singleplayer unless you just want a laugh.
*Image courtesy of Google, video courtesy of me