I was inspired to write a quick mini review of Army of Two since Derek mentioned it over on leftwise.com . I was compelled to buy this game as a content filler between releases of the games I really want ( GTA4, etc.) . This has usually been a moderately reliable strategy, and tends to result in at least a few hours of good gaming.I tend to enjoy FPS and TPS shooters.
It turns out that there are quite a few things about this game that end up overshadowing anything positive I could say.
- The static(on rails) path the game takes you down is at times frustrating and un-imaginative. GOW, and many other shooters find ways to make level progression fluid, or interesting enough to distract you from the reality of what is going on. It is not really that fun to clear a map, and the only dynamic thing about it was that you got to hoist your coop partner up on a box. Goldeneye on Nintendo 64 had better map layout and level progression.
- AI,AI,AI . I thought I would play the single player campaign before goading someone else into getting it( so I could have a coop partner). I know AI is hard, and there are a lot of developers/publishers doing interesting things with it, but those people didn’t work on this game. Your coop buddy likes to get stuck and run around in circles when you most need him. And the enemy units have two modes : “hide behind box and shoot”, and “run straight at you” . This means that you either setup up your buddy to give covering fire, and kill 50 dudes untouched, or you get killed by one guy because you can’t get your damn buddy to turn around, standup, or otherwise care about the bullets hitting him in the face.
- Targeting system: This game employs some of the same targeting methods as other XB360 games, and in theory these usually work great. In this case, the controls are jumpy, and targeting is more about luck than accuracy. There is just a lack of precision there that grinds on me.
Full disclosure: I didn’t play any online yet or true coop. I judge games like this based on how good the one player experience is. Unless you tell me a game is only multi-player, there needs to be a solid single player experience. This game just didn’t do it for me. I found myself playing it not because I enjoyed it, but because EA stole another $60 out of my pocket, and I didn’t want to waste it. I have been taught this lesson many times, and usually just rent when I am unsure about a game. Maybe I will learn the lesson some day.
(Idiot, why don’t you learn…)