Operation Flashpoint- Dragon Rising (OF) is a tactical FPS developed and published by Codemasters and is the spiritual successor to Bohemia's Operation Flashpoint- Cold War Crisis. It is now available for the PS3, XBox 360 and PC.
Rainbow Six Vegas, Band of Brothers and Ghost Recon, you are on notice. There's a new recruit in the tactical military FPS genre. OF succeeds and does a lot of great things, but it's unbalanced pace and lack of flair and sheer spectacle of others like CoD- Modern Warfare may hinder it's experience to some.
First and foremost, this isn't a run and gun shooter. It's a tactical FPS and plays much differently.
In OF, a small island controlled by Russia with a large supply of oil is being challenged and occupied by the Chinese. The US is asked for assistance and Marines are called in to avert a global crisis and possibly a world war. The plot reminded me a little too much of Frontlines-Fuel of War, but in games like these, plot drivers aren't necessary. Just a decent enough story to provide a backdrop is sufficient.
Again, this is not a run and gun shooter. This is a tactical shooter and they try to make it as 'realistic' as possible. Much of your shooting will be sniping at long distances. Wounds must be healed, your squad must be placed and moved and you can't take a lot of fire. In fact you can be killed with one shot on occasions. Stealth is emphasized on more than a few missions. Those who have had a strict diet of Halo and CoD may not enjoy this game. This game takes thinking, planning, but most of all it takes patience. If you go 'all in' (as I do in a number of FPSs) you are guaranteed death, and that can set you back a long ways as they are not generous with checkpoints here.
In the single player campaign, you take control of the squad and issue them commands to fire, take cover, heal, etc. They resond generally well most of the time in regards to movement and position, but their defense is questionable. They will sometimes pop out seemingly to intentionally take lead in the head. They don't respond as defensively well as others in the genre, the first one that comes to my mind is GRAW.
There are over 60 authenticly recreated firearms in the game and each one sounds different.
The Island is massive and you can drive any vehicle available at any time.
The single player (in my estimation) can take upwards of 10-12 hours or more because the pacing is much slower and you will die. A lot. That's not only because of the difficult enemy AI, but because your strategies break down over time. If you make a wrong move you will pay dearly. When the difficulty is adjusted, it just changes your HUD. Your compass and enemy markers will be gone along with ammo counts in more difficult modes.
The graphics are great, and it's seen in all the explosions, landscapes and structures. The character models are excellent, move fluidy and facial features are realistic. The sound is great and the gunfire is ferocious.
The multiplayer components are campaign coop local/online, online vs. and Infiltration and Annihilation maps with more content promised.
There are many great firefights in the game, but even their best can't compete with the grandiose CoD-MW. In fact, if I was Codemasters I would've released this game 6 months ago. It's a little too close to MW2's much hyped release. But if you liked 'combat sims' like Full Spectrum Warrior or tactical shooters like GRAW, RB6 and those in the genre, you'll have a lot to like here. The general pacing is much slower than most tactical shooters because Codemasters tried to create as realistic an experience as possible, but overall it's a great game. If you've never tried a tactical FPS this is a good place to start, but if you are not fond of the genre, stay away.
Kudos to Codemasters for finally making a shooter that isn't smothered in mediocrity like Legendary or downright awful like Turning Point.
Rated M for Mature- Blood and Gore, intense violence, strong language