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Land Combat

Operation FlashPoint 2 Follow-Up

As Magnum approached the OFP 2 display he was eagerly greeted by one of the game’s developers, who told him that they’d checked SimHQ’s web site and coverage of E3 the night before [and this is why we encourage our members to communicate in the forums! - Ed]. Magnum asked if there was one multiplayer leader in charge of the fire team in co-op play. The answer is "yes". The on-line leader can give orders in-game to the other players via the battlefield and the map using the exact same commands used to direct the AI in single-player. On-line players receive their orders and waypoints just like the AI — now all your human soldiers have to do is just follow your orders! Magnum also asked if you can give individual orders to humans and AI team members or only as a whole, the answer is that you could either send to “all” or send “to soldier 1 through 4” in the top left of the game HUD. Magnum also brought up our members’ concern about excessive head bobbing when running. The developer stated that is a known concern and is already being addressed. He elaborated that their goal was to give the visual perspective from the rifle being held and the point of focus or movement would be at the end of the rifle, which should make visual movement seem more realistic. The final follow-up question was about fire teams using vehicles. Say that you’re assigned a mission that tasks you to use a vehicle — for instance an M1A1 MBT. In that case your fire team will only be 3 men, human or AI, because each position of the tank needs to be filled: driver, gunner, and commander. If you’re assigned an air mission then there will only be two players in your fire team and they will be wearing flight suits and have limited weapons. Of course if you start off in a 4-man infantry fire team and then get into a tank or helo, one or more members of your team will be left behind. So, the take-away from all this is that you should play the role you’re assigned on a mission, but you don’t HAVE to so long as you understand the trade-off.

In reference to multiplayer: The multiplayer aspect of the game will be announced shortly after E3 ends. There is no official word on the MP, and all the posts at other web sites or in forums are not correct. The only thing we really know about MP right now is that it will have a 4 player co-op campaign.

EA Press Briefing

Battlefield: Bad Company 2

Magnum finally made it to his EA press event meeting. The first game he took a look at was Battlefield: Bad Company 2. One of the developers of the game brought everyone scheduled for that press event into a closed room. There was a big screen TV on one wall where the announcer showed the trailer and talked about the gameplay. On the other side was a bar. On the other two walls were Xbox 360s with the game running. We were all given a mission in which we had to work as a team to take three objectives. The basic gameplay is essentially a carry-over from the first game. Of course the engine has been tuned, and the sights and sounds are even better. The explosives and damage hve been greatly increased. It’s still a typical Battlefield action game, but a damn good one.

Army of Two: The 40th Day

Magnum then moved to the next EA meeting room, where Army of Two: The 40th Day was showing. We all entered and sat down. Two developers talked about the game and showed a trailer. They had two big screens on the wall and showed how the game played. As most of you already know, Co-op is a requirement for this game (hence the game‘s title). Once again, gameplay appears identical to the original game, but with improved scenery, improved moves, and improved weapons. You still help each other up over walls or to take down a heavy door. What is new are a few things that seemed to be “borrowed” from other games. For example: One guy can climb up some stairs sneak to the other side of a building, maybe behind a wooden gate, then “tag” enemies and friendlies. Then both can pick their targets and take out the enemy together. Friendlies are civilians, and the more you save the more money you get at mission’s end. Also they wanted you to get more personal with the characters, so when they’re not fighting they pull up their hockey mask so you can see their face. One of the neat new features is decision making. In one example they broke into an armory and were taking weapons when an armed security guard came in and caught them. The two argued about what to do: put the weapons back and leave or take the weapons anyway? They decided to take the weapons and the guard was killed. What EA is striving for is player-on-player arguments, and whoever picks a plan of action first is what the team will do. And finally about the new weapon systems — you can build your weapons from different parts, adding AK47 stocks to M16A2’s, suppressors, sights, or even homemade soda can suppressors. The end result are some ugly and ridiculous weapons. Everyone in the room seemed to like that feature except me. Army of Two: The 40th Day is just the more of the same, with some improvements but still a run-and-gun action game. It looks like the only real tactics used is suppression and flanking.


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E3Expo 2009

Report 1: Arrival
Report 2: Day 1
Report 3: Day 2
Report 4: Day 3


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