If there was one thing that tore me away from Activision's absolute behemoth of a shooter, Modern Warfare 2, it was EA's Battlefield Bad Company 2.
There is something immensely satisfying about long distance sniping on huge maps, all while collecting my mates' dog tags only to remind them later how often I snuck behind them to cut them up. They were good times. So you can only imagine how I was practically foaming at the mouth when EA announced the Vietnam expansion.
What is this Vietnam
pack then? Just another re-skin? Well, it's everything you've already come to expect from Battlefield Bad Company 2
but with a 1960s' twist. Sure, it's a new skin but it contains all new maps, vehicles, forces and weapons. A bulky add-on for sure and it will make your return to the game much more refreshing.
All your convenient modern trinkets have been stripped away, replaced with historically accurate flame-throwers, US XM22 Navy SEAL machine guns and even a M79 grenade launcher. There are 15 additional weapons that replace your modern arsenal, each lacking the high-tech features of their successors. So, be warned, it can be hard to adjust from red sight to iron sight. The weapons feel a lot more sluggish but strangely more satisfying to fire.
Maps & Legends
The new maps look impressive too. I joined a conquest match taking place on Hill 137: a huge mountainous jungle map. It is split between two large hilltops, a river and a huge burning paddy field filled with trenches. The map enables players of each discipline to really take advantage of their surroundings via high points with plenty of foliage for snipers. There are also rocks and debris breaking up muddy paths for soldiers to attack, and as cover for medics to safely keep an eye on their team. These are combined with plenty of vehicles and vantage points for engineers to get trigger-happy with.
The matches feel more dramatic, with capture points right in the heart of burning trenches or the middle of a village. Everything is getting blown to pieces around you and it's a real fight to stay alive.
The soundtrack has been updated as well, allowing players to tune into eight radio channels in-game. There are 49 tracks in all, authentically in keeping with the setting. Fortunate Son
by Creedence Clearwater Revival makes an appearance, and you can re-enact Apocalypse Now
with The Ride of the Valkyries
by Wagner (the composer, not X-Factor's
karaoke train wreck). Along with the music, all new voice-overs have been recorded for what EA likes to call “maximum immersion” - with both forces boasting authentic lines taken from Vietnam-era transcripts.
The American Huey helicopter, PBR patrol boat and Russian T54 tank sit beside three currently unannounced vehicles in the roster. To top it all off are four massive, brand new maps to claim delicious victory in. Competing directly with Call of Duty: Black Ops
for a Vietnam shooter this Christmas, Battlefield Bad Company 2 Vietnam
is looking good, offering a more strategic alternative to its run-and-gun competitor. It's definitely looking to be a pretty beefy expansion and one well worth checking out this winter.