Army of Two was yet another AAA title that was to grace us this past holiday season. Although, with games like Rock Band, Mass Effect, and Unreal tournament 3, was Army of Two going to find an audience in the most crowded holiday season ever? In what I would call a smart move Electronic Arts got some pre-release butterflies and in late October decided to delay the game into early 2008 stating its need of polish as the reason:
“‘Army of Two’ has potential to become a lasting EA franchise — so getting the first title right is essential,” Frank Gibeau, head of EA Games said back then. Well its 2008 and Army of Two is here. After being released this past Tuesday, some sites have begun sharing their reviews. Let’s have a look what they have to say:
IGN 7.9/10 X360: “..the co-op portion of Army of Two really drives home the point that this is a game designed to play with a friend. That’s not to slam the partner AI in any way; it will do what you need it to do for the most part and help you through most missions without major incidents. However, the AI will perform some stupid mistakes here and there, such as dragging you large distances to what it determines to be “safe cover” before healing you. This will sometimes have the effect of pulling you through dangerous enemy positions and leave you open to more grenade attacks that you can potentially defend against.”
Team Xbox 7.1/10 X360: “Army of Two also promised to have a lot of personality, but the scripted dialog could sure use a lot of help. It’s bland and pedestrian, when the intent was for it to be clever and funny. Pimping your guns, getting new bulletproof masks designs and the celebration animations (all five of them) show that the devs originally had an irreverent game in mind. But, in the end, it doesn’t come across that way.”
VideoGamer 6/10 PS3: “Built using the Unreal Engine 3 Army of Two looks solid, but nothing more. Character models are excellent, but the environments are pretty sparse and enemies start to resemble clones before too long. The hovercraft sections don’t shine visually either, with the vehicle almost looking like it’s been pasted into the scene. Thankfully the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions both run at a pretty smooth frame rate and the differences between the two visually are minimal at most – we had both running side by side and it’s hard to pick a winner.”
GameDaily 8/10 PS3: “Army of Two is very playable alone, but multiplayer is where it’s at. You can work with a friend in co-op through Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network, and the results are satisfying. There are a couple of side problems, however. Occasionally, you might run into miscommunication about who should take the Aggro. In addition, if your buddy’s injured, you can call on him to stay put, but then you waste time trying to track them down since their location isn’t indicated on the map. You can work through it, but it takes patience. The multiplayer two-on-two combat scenarios are great as well, although there are only four maps available. EA promises more in the future via download, but at a price.”
Overall not bad for Army of Two’s first outing, with most complaints centering around its typical plot, game length which only clocks in at about six hours, and broken single player campaign. This game was designed around the idea of cooperative play, and while this may hurt other aspects of the game, specifically its single player, Army of Two apparently does a good job of presenting a fun and exciting adventure for you and a friend.
[See also: Army of Two gallery]