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Looking back at Medal of Honor

I don't hold high praise for the Medal of Honor franchise. It's a shooter franchise that started out good, but then turned to the ways of its competitor and ended up going from a unique stealth-based FPS to Call of Duty light. The newest game seems to continue in this route, feeling like Call of Duty 4 but without the fun and polish of that game.

I recently finished Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 on the Wii. It was the last WWII-era MOH game to be released, and it was released early on in the console's life. I've owned the game since I got my Wii in 2009, and after picking at it level-by-level over the course of about two years, I finally finished it a few days ago. I thought it was pretty damn good. In fact, it reminded me of the earlier MOH games.

For those too young to remember MOH and MOH: Underground, both of those games had a bigger emphasis on stealth and espionage. You'd infiltrate enemy lines, often by your lonesome, and fight dozens of Nazis on your way to destroying important enemy things. They kept this trend with Frontline on the consoles and Allied Assault on the PC, but added more action-oriented levels. But by the time we got to European Assault, the series went full-on "Call of Duty" knockoff. Don't even get me started on MOH: Airborne. It had ridiculous things like giant Flak Towers in the middle of Berlin and... well, these guys:

Yeah, Heroes 2 doesn't get anywhere ridiculous like that. Some of Heroes 2's levels, and there's about 11 of them, feature you going through areas alone attacking the enemy any way you can, just like the older games. While it doesn't have levels where you posed as German officers like the older games, it was still fun enough.

It made me think: Why does EA try to chase the "action war movie" train that COD already has in spades? Why don't they make a substantially good shooter with some espionage elements instead? Tap into a genre they once pioneered? It would make the series feel unique and fresh for the first time in about ten years.

But since the newest MOH was a modest success, probably in part due to the massive COD hate train that's brewed since MW2's launch; we'll probably see MOH2 go through the same motions of having us fight Taliban forces for the umpteenth time. I don't understand why EA still has MOH in the first place, they already have their token war shooter in Battlefield, they should've dumped MOH after Airborne and put all their focus on Battlefield.

Are you listening, EA? If you don't like reading words, here's a picture instead:

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About TonicBHone of us since 2:09 PM on 07.13.2009

I am a 28-year-old guy who plays video games on occasion. I'm a casual collector and own various games from the Atari 2600 to the current generation of game consoles. Nothing really on the "rare" side... unless you count owning about a dozen variations of Wheel of Fortune as "rare."

I write and review things on occasion. I occasionally write reviews of games, otherwise it's me ranting about gaming and the industry at large. Be forewarned: Expect loads of cynicism over gamers and some of the things they say. I hate fanboys and all the things they stand for. I also dislike arguments without facts to back them up. Otherwise I'm a nice guy unless you try to teabag me in a multiplayer game. Then I might not be so nice.

When not sporadically contributing opinions to Destructoid's community blogs, I write about gaming obscurities and oddities at You Found a Secret Area.

I also occasionally post stuff elsewhere. Usually off-topic stuff, but other things as well.
Xbox LIVE:TonicBH
Steam ID:TonicBH


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