Okay, let me blunt. Medal of Honor Warfigher, you let me down. After previewing you many times and enjoying your singleplayer and multiplayer offerings, I was prepared to be lenient, let you have a chance and love and care for you. You turned your back, and you walked away.
Before this gets creepy, I seriously was looking forward to Warfighter. I thought it would be an interesting and fun campaign with a good and meaningful story, but instead Warfighter provides a weak and confusing story with unlikeable characters. Unlikeable characters wouldn’t be such a huge thing, if the game didn’t make the characters the main focus. You play mainly as a soldier called “Preacher”, a man who is dedicated to his military service, so much so that his relationship with his wife and child is pretty much in ruins. This could serve as a decent story, but the characters are so unlikeable and the main concept is somewhat hard to follow. Sure, if you’re in the military or related to someone who is you fully understand the sacrifices made. But us in the gamer world can relate very little to this tale.
Like other shooters, Warfighter’s narrative is all about finding weapons that are in the hands of bad dudes… Well, I think it is. Warfighter’s story is hard to follow as it skips from country to country, then goes back in time, then comes back to the present, then the future, then back in time again, and to make matters worse, you also swap between characters a lot which makes it even harder to follow.
Gameplay on the other hand for the most part is alright. Guns feel good and somewhat more “realistic” than most shooters. But the gun fights in the game are just all over the place and there is really no order to the chaos. I understand that criticism sounds strange, but it is one of the most annoying parts about the gameplay. For example, many times I died because enemies were randomly spawning to my sides and even behind me. Pushing up to get to the next checkpoint is dangerous as you never know where the enemies are coming from. Unpredictable enemy spawns could be a great thing if they didn’t negatively impact the player. Speaking of dying… Checkpoints are horrible in Warfighter and is made even worse when a lot of deaths aren’t your fault. So many times I had to trudge for ten minutes because the scripted enemy who jumps on turrets or has a rocket launcher slaughtered me. Games today are smarter, they know the pain points or the harder sections of levels and checkpoint you just before that section, Warfighter does not.
Medal of Honor Warfighter feels like it was designed via a checklist. During your time playing Warfighter you will have the FPS staples of the helicopter level, boat level, stealth level, unarmed melee level, chase level and the famous car level(s). Warfighter attempts most of these poorly. All of them seem to scripted, games today allow you to drive and shoot from the boat or helicopter, but in Warfighter you are on a straight and linear path. It wouldn’t feel so unoriginal, if these sections were done well or added something new, but they don’t and because of this these sequences fall dead.
For all the bad in Medal of Honor Warfighter, there is some good. The soundtrack and voice acting is stellar. As a big fan of soundtrack music, I loved the sound of Warfighter, the immense buildups and adrenaline racing tracks. The voice acting is also well done and has that dark tone you would expect from military men. Guns and explosions also sound great and add a lot of atmosphere to the game. Also, when playing as an Australian in multiplayer…Are you ready for this? Are you sure? Okay. You actually sound Australian!
There are some pretty bad technical issues with Warfighter however, such as texture loading, sound not working, people disappearing and clipping issues. All of these happened in Battlefield 3 as well, so I can only blame the Frostbite 2 engine. Graphically Warfighter looks alright on console, but also playing it on PC it looks great. The cutscenes look good, but in true FPS style it’s always like a brown filter is over the screen. Most of these issues also carry into the multiplayer section of Warfighter.
Multiplayer is most likely where you’ll spend most of your time, but you’ll probably get sick of it really quickly. One look at the labyrinth that is the multiplayer menus, some people will probably be turned off the idea right from the start. Not only are the menus are confusing mess, they are slow and cumbersome, both in game and at the menu. The main focus in Warfighter’s multiplayer is playing for your country. You have many different nations with many different classes at your disposal, it’s a fun idea that would work really well if the gameplay wasn’t so annoyingly bad.
While it’s never fun to be killed in multiplayer action, Warfighter goes out of its way to make you feel that you should not have died. Many times you will put magazines into people and they’ll calmy turn around and put one bullet in you and you’ll drop. You then to wait for what seems an eternity at the respawn screen as modes require a respawn timer. If you’re playing in smaller countries good luck finding a game. At the moment in Australia, I am able to find ONE server with people actually in it. Much like the singleplayer Warfighter’s multiplayer has some good ideas, but they are all executed really poorly.
As someone who loved the reboot of Medal of Honor and was looking forward to Warfighter, I am unbelievably disappointed. Warfighter feels like it could have been a solid experience if the execution was done well. The story fails to deliver and the gameplay (while it could) doesn’t override the poor storytelling. You can easily say for most shooters, “Don’t worry about the singleplayer, multiplayer is worth buying it for!”, I cannot say that about Warfighter. Overall, Medal of Honor Warfighter is a poor sequel that fails to deliver.