so many military combat games being released there
has to be some kind of novelty that sets each one
apart. Close Combat: First to Fight maintains that
you don't have to babysit your squad as they come
pre-programmed courtesy of intense marine training
- or is that brainwashing? That doesn't mean that
you don't have any control over your squad. You can
still issue commands but more of the obvious practices
are taken care of automatically. Both the single and
multi-player modes are worthy of play and that's rare
for such a game.
to Fight is very heavily militarily themed. It's almost
too stuffy. This is one serious, no-nonsense game.
Personally I like a little nonsense as it tends to
make things seem more realistic. I can imagine that
when you're in a life and death situation you may
not be in the mood for jokes but when missions are
completed and tensions are released you would think
that some of these guys would have some kind of verbal
celebration other than, "Good work." Even
the music is composed of military-inspired marches.
The game tries way too hard to make it believable
and as a result comes across as forces and unnatural.
It's just too heavy handed with the propaganda.
you're briefed on your mission, you and your squad
will take to the streets of Beirut amidst nests of
terrorists. There is no real story to the game, instead
you will catch bits of information via television
broadcasts similar to those in Splinter Cell. It's
not imperative that you understand anything else but
your immediate mission.
squad can be your most important asset if used properly.
This is still a first-person shooter but your teammates
can really cover your ass in a lot of situations.
They are trained in MAGTAF which stands for Marine
Air Ground Task Force which basically means that they
will perform the necessary tactics to cover all angles
in any given situation from as many vantage points
as are accessible. If you open a door they will take
positions to insure that all points of the room will
be covered and eventually (hopefully) cleared of enemies.
This also works in rural areas where they will take
to rooftops to ensure that you can cross a street.
can be given in real time so that you can react and
adapt to the ever-changing situations. The AI for
both sides is smart and you can expect the terrorists
to also change their tactics to match your. Although
you can play some of these missions solo it's not
nearly as much fun without the squad by your side.
Don't be impatient.
the leader you have to make sure that your squad is
well fed, relatively safe and not too overworked.
While these are men of incredible discipline they
are still human and are affected psychologically by
your actions and demands. I couldn't really get these
guys down too much although you can make them respond
a little slower by pushing them. It seems that you're
also highly disciplined since there aren't too many
unreasonable commands to issue. So much for freedom.
The bad guys are also affected psychologically and
you will see evidence of this as you kick their sorry
asses and watch them abandon their posts as they run
with their tails between their cowardly legs.
are somewhat limited but by no means useless. The
M-16 and the A4 allow you to zoom in on the enemy
for more accurate shots. You can also call in various
air strikes, mortar attacks and snipers to help you
out. Vehicles such as tanks and jeeps are also at
your disposal but only in appropriate situations.
They're just keeping it real, dude.
things are as fun as the four-player co-op mode. You
can play this mode on or offline. Offline you can
play the mode using a four-way split screen. Using
the SysLink you can connect two to eight consoles
together and take advantage of team-based competition
modes with the Xbox Live feature. Load times can be
nasty and there is some audio lag but for the most
part the gameplay is solid. New maps will be made
available in the coming weeks and months.
not blown away by the graphics or the animation which
is stiff and unnatural looking. The environments don't
appear very realistic and seem to look more like a
Hollywood set. Effects such as explosions are underwhelming
and even the shadows of the characters defy reality
and wander about on their own volition. Disembodied
voices and the sound of non-existent traffic make
me wonder if the developers accidentally added a couple
of tracks destined for another game to the mix.
some shortcomings that don't actually interfere with
the gameplay First to Fight is a solid shooter that
will definitely scratch your itchy trigger finger.