Blind Review – Medal of Honor (2010)

This is what success looks like.

A Terrorist’s Tale

Electronic Arts’ reboot of their classic WWII shooter series is finally upon us. Where the previous games endeavored to recreate famous battles between the Allied forces and Nazi Germany, developer Danger Close has taken a more controversial path, creating what is, essentially, a Taliban simulator.

Players take the role of a nameless member of the Taliban in a rural part of Afghanistan. The early levels teach you the controls and basics of combat as you and a cadre of Taliban enforcers visit a nearby village to root out Coalition collaborators and punish women bold enough to go outside without wearing a burqa.

Fouad is your immediate superior.

The story kicks in to high gear when a unit of Army Rangers are air-lifted to the region and begin operations to establish a base and launch an offensive on the Taliban stronghold. What follows is a mix of stealth, sabotage and defensive missions. All this builds to a fever pitch in the climax as the Taliban’s mountain bunker is being rushed by wave after wave of US infantry, their bodies piling up at the cave entrances, while B-52 bombers pound the mountain from above.

Setting aside the fact that the game’s content is morally repugnant, the shooting mechanics are actually very good. The weapons feel appropriately weighty and destructive, with well justified variations in accuracy. The Unreal Engine 3 looks great recreating the bombed out, monochromatic wastes of the Afghan mountains.

A mission where you place a roadside IED and try to lure an Army convoy into the trap is especially good, and there is little so satisfying as knocking a Blackhawk helicopter out of the sky with your piece of shit RPG while avoiding fire from its Apache escort.

This is what success looks like.

The game, naturally, includes a number of competitive multiplayer modes. In a perversion of the system employed in America’s Army, players online always appear  to be playing as the Taliban. Both sides will see the opposing team as American soldiers. Modes include variations on team death match, domination and more detailed rolling objective matches. Much like the recent Call of Duty games you accrue experience as you play allowing you to upgrade your weapon load out and modified the appearance of your character.

It’s a supremely polished experience with a scathing narrative and a chip on its shoulder. It’s difficult not to recommend a game this well made, but it more difficult to ignore this particular game’s incredibly offensive premise. It is a title made by people who hate America for people who hate America. I have no choice but to fulfill my patriotic duty in urging gamers not to support such a transparent act of hatred. I suggest you all contact your local congressional representative, demanding they take action against transgressive games like Medal of Honor.

I pledge allegiance to that beautiful flag!

Our Score: Bottle Cap