Authentic environments range from visually stunning (In the sense of scope) to downright ugly. Some of the character animations are a bit awkward, and one particular glitch sent a German rifleman across the map where he promptly caught himself on barbed wire and ruined the mood. The textures could be worse, but that's like saying that Duke Nukem Flopped could've been more hyped. For 2005, graphically speaking, it's mediocre. Not great, not terrible, not a benchmark for games and not something you'll want to recycle for toilet paper. While being failry realistic, it suffers from having people die very quickly, which can be frustrating when you need that person for a particular job, as shown perfectly by Objective XYZ. The multiplayer has two players who each command two teams to try and eliminate the other team. While not a straight up shooter, it would be nice to see some other objectives rather than just kill everyone else. This is BiA, not Quake.
The story is fantastic. Not Half Life fantastic mind you, you do not have a wide range of ways to be attached to the game. Be that as it is, BiA is still worth playing just for it's story. Gritty, depressing and a bit too real at times, BiA is not for children, those with a weak stomach or those who get attached to characters quickly. The gameplay is solid and fair, giving you advantages when you constantly fail, but also giving you the choice wheather or not you take that extra. You will get attached to characters, some quicker than others, and if they die in combat, or via scripted event, it can be a real pain, due to the fact that you cannot save whenever you want. This can be good though, it pushes the story along and makes character deaths even more shocking than in games such as Halo: Combat Evolved.
Most players will die a few times during this game, myself included. The introduction of a few characters can feel a bit strange when they either die or are never mentioned again during later missions. One death in particular was shocking, although it did seem a bit pointless, as I had been involved in the game quite a bit and hadn't gotten a grasp on who he was or why he was there. The following mission had you sniping from a tower while you sent your soldiers to work down below, but this personally felt like it wanted to be an RTS for a mission. For half the mission, either the enemy soldiers are too far away or the bloody tanks get in the way which make it feel less team oriented, and more like a straight up FPS while still keeping the same mechanics, which means that getting killed instantly by a tank shell is not impossible. Thankfully it only lasted one mission and was not seen again.
This is the best game in the series so far. Earned in Blood shows a different perspective, which is fine, but storywise the third game Hell's Highway has an intro cutscene which basically sums up Road to Hill 30 and Earned in Blood, which may make you wonder why you bought RtH30 and EiB, but you bought them because you are a good boy and played the first ones because they were better games.
-Earned in Blood, Hell's Highway to a lesser extent
-Star Wars Republic Commando
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