I don’t know why, but H&D2 is still damn fun to play. It’s tense as you lead your squad towards the objective (silencing enemy patrols, avoiding detection), engaging when you plan your method of approach and assault, and thrilling when you make the strike. This is seriously the only ‘action’ game where it is so enjoyable to play it nice and slowly.
For the benefit of people who have no idea what the hell I’m talking about, it’s a first/third person shooter called Hidden & Dangerous 2, sequel to the fun but flawed H&D (which Illusion Softworks released for free download to promote the sequel). The premise is the same; lead your four-man SAS (British special forces) squad through missions set during WWII, engage the enemies using a personalized arsenal, and partake in heavily-accented and cheesy dialogue.
While not very well-known or as successful as, say, Call of Duty, H&D2‘s fanbase grew nevertheless – actually, people are probably still playing it now. This is because even after all these years, H&D2 still offers a fairly unique experience you can’t find in other games…
– the body-hopping like in Ghost Recon (you control one soldier, and can switch between your four main guys)
– the complicated equipment system (based on the weight of items and the overall endurance of your soldier)
– the open-ended mission designs (mostly, you go in at a designated point, and they let you loose)
Most games might have one or two of these elements, but rarely all three. Earned in Blood had open-ended maps too, but was restricted in most other aspects. Call of Duty 2 had the occasional open-ended map… and that’s about it. Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six are two very similar games, but R6 relied too heavily on the table-planning (you pretty much plan out the entire mission on a blueprint map beforehand) and not enough field tactics. GR… no complaints, really, I just played it too much. And the last, Operation Flashpoint, had a lot of freedom and personal choice, but was ungodly difficult (hey, it’s not a “combat simulator” for nothing).
So, anyway, random spam over. H&D‘s fun!!
EIGHT MONTH UPDATE LULWUT:
-The Leader- “Cross” Harris
Uniform: Helmet (optional) and standard BDU with camouflage
Primary: Lee-Enfield No.5 bolt-action rifle with Optics, Thompson M1928 submachine gun
Secondary: A collection of every handgun in the game, attack grenades
-The Medic- “Doc” Cunningham
Uniform: Beret and leather BDU
Primary: M1 self-loading carbine
Secondary: M9 recoilless launcher, Colt M1911 handgun, frag grenades
Equipment: Medical supplies
-The Spy- “Jerry” Williams
Primary: Sten Mk.IIS silenced submachine gun, MP40 submachine gun
Secondary: Fairbayne-Stykes fighting knife, Panzerfaust 60
Equipment: Satchel charges
-The Mule- “Blair” Addler
Uniform: Helmet and standard BDU
Primary: Browning M1918 automatic rifle, M1 self-loading rifle
Secondary: Anti-tank mines, anti-personnel mines, attack grenades, frag grenades
Equipment: Medical supplies, satchel charges, various ammunition