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Battlefield 2 PC Review - -

Gameplay 9.2
Graphics 9.7
Sound 9.5
Value 9.3
Distributor: Electronic Arts
Review Date:
July 2005
Andrew B


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Battlefield 2

Electronic Arts most hallowed first person shooter returns in what not only ups the ante of online gaming but also the genre itself. Battlefield 2 involves three modern military forces (US, Chinese & Middle East Coalition) that allows up to 32 players per team to battle the enemy in what is easily the most realistic and entertaining on-line first person shooter. DICE, the developers of Battlefield 2 have also introduced a variety of new gaming environments from cities to deserts and also a variety of new vehicles such as APCs, tanks and even fighter jets that players can commandeer.

Key Features

  • Online multiplayer action with up to 64 players on the PC.
  • All-new gameplay engine brings the immense locations to life complete with realistic physics and dynamic lighting.
  • Maps scale to the number of players engaging in battle for a unique and intense experience every time.
  • Take control of over 30 land, sea, and air vehicles, including tanks, helicopters, hovercraft, fast attack vehicles, and fighter jets.
  • Choose to battle as U.S., Chinese, or Middle East Coalition troops, each with their own unique arsenals.
  • A variety of soldier classes including Assault, Sniper, Special Ops, Combat Engineer, Medic, Heavy Weapons, and Anti-Tank units.
  • New state-of-the-art weapon systems, including wire-guided missiles and laser designated bombs.
  • Material penetration feature makes sure players know the difference between cover and concealment.
  • Character Persistence and Growth. With in-game success, players increase their rank from recruit all the way to General and unlock new weapons, medals, and more.
  • Join a squad or select the new Commander Mode to assume the strategic role of a battlefield commander directing his forces.
  • Full in-game community support including, buddy lists, stat tracking, live chat rooms, and in-game clan creation.
  • Voice over IP supported with headset.

The gameplay of the original game remains fairly intact with players generally using their keyboards and mouse to control their character from a first person perspective. The gamer also has access to plethora of vehicles and weaponry to achieve their objectives for their team. With that said, Battlefield 2 also supports a myriad of different controllers but for most players, the keyboard and mouse will suffice.

Probably the two most noticeable additions to the Battlefield series is the new character Commander and more destroyable items in the gaming environment. Commanders are now a key component to the gameplay that allows them to see virtually everything that is happening in the game environment. Commanders also have the ability to call in artillery and even drop supplies for their teammates. Probably the most useful ability of a commander is their radar drone that allows them to see all units on the map but fortunately this lasts only briefly which helps keep the gameplay even between both teams. A good commander can virtually change the tides of war with a bad commander being a sure answer to failure. 

Destroyable items is a true innovation to the genre of first person gaming and is something that has not really been done well since Red Faction. Although in the previous game of the Battlefield series, certain items could be destroyed but now Battlefield 2 has the ability to destroy bridges and even radar units that really makes for some interesting gaming. Fortunately, if you have an engineer handy, they can help negate the effects of destroyable items and repair valuable units that almost creates a game of cat and mouse.

Gamers who are expecting a doom type of experience in Battlefield 2 will unfortunately be disappointed as the game only offers an instant action mode that is limited to 16-players. Although the artificial intelligence is quite good, it is still not as good as playing real opponents so if you're looking for a great single-player game than I would strongly give this title a miss, unless you are a war nut that just can't get enough of military first person shooters. Although the single-player mode is perfect for learning the ropes of the title, especially all the weapons and vehicles that I would suggest all novice players engage with.

When you first load the game, the player is prompted to create their own account that not only tracks your career but also allows you to be ranked with other players from the around the globe. When you play on ranked servers, any points you gain get added to your global score which acts like experience points from Role-Playing Games. Thus, the more points you get, you’ll eventually get promoted to a new level. At certain promotion levels, the game will ask you if you want to unlock a new weapon for each class.

As with the previous game, Battlefield 2 is really a dedicated multiplayer game that allows you to play against virtually tens of thousands of people from around the world. The interface of connecting to servers has also been improved and fortunately there are thousands of servers from around the world to play, so you can be guaranteed to get a server that is fast enough for your connection without the dreaded lag monster.

Graphically, Battlefield 2 is an extremely impressive looking title (provided you have the PC to run it) that contains massive and highly detailed gameplay environments and some extraordinary characters that contain some of the most realistic texture details to grace the PC in a long time. DICE have truly upped the ante of gaming because whether you are running around a nuclear power plant or visiting a strange city in the middle east, everything has been flawlessly implemented into the game, especially the smaller touches such as birds fleeing from bushes if players approach or the realistic blades of grass that really help make you feel that you are actually there.

The soundtrack of Battlefield 2 is extremely reminiscent of Battlefield 1942 that is only used during the menus, loading and victory. With that said, Battlefield 2 is extremely reliant on sound effects and with a decent set of speakers (surround) or headphones and you will definitely have the upper hand of those that don't. DICE have implemented a variety of different sound effects that is also affected by the gaming environment, for instance, gunfire up close is deafening. The game also contains all the screams, shouts, deaths and sounds of war that is all what first person shooter gaming is about.

In conclusion Battlefield 2 has received a thorough face lift that places the game firmly in the 21st century with extraordinary graphics, real squad based mechanics and some of the best damn online gaming that you will ever experience. If you have a broadband connection and a relatively faster computer than Battlefield 2 will easily be the only thing you will be doing for weeks when your purchase this title. Check it out!


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