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Call of Duty - United Offensive
(hx) 05:32 PM CEST - Sep,21 2004

There's no doubt that last year's Call of Duty (review 94%) contained some of the most fun I've had with a first-person shooter in years. It was the most intense, WWII FPS I have ever played. The expansion pack, Call of Duty: United Offensive, takes the already strong gameplay of the original and offers up even more dramatic moments on the battlefields of World War II.

Like the original game, United Offensive will have three separate all-new campaigns which are divided into 13 intense new single player missions. The game let you join the U.S. 101st Airborne during the Battle of the Bulge, the British campaign as an airman shooting down German ME-109s from a B-17 bomber, and the Russian frontlines as a conscript in the crucial eight-day Battle of Kursk. Yeah, there're tanks, jeeps and even planes (on the single player at least)!

The expansion pack also brings some new weapons WWII weapons, including the German Flammenwerfer 35 Flamethrower (which is extremely fun to use), Russian Tokarev SVT-40 Self-Loading Rifle, portable deployable machine-guns and smoke grenades. To keep the tanks becoming to overpowered you will find Panzerschrek anti-tank weapons and American M1A1 Bazookas all over the place. Unlike BF1942, where taking a tank out was pretty hard with limited ammo, it is much easier to do so in United Offensive. Of course, many old and favorite weapons are back such as the Thompson, M1 Garand, MKII Sten, M1A1 Carabine, etc.

To be honest, United Offensive is much more difficult than Call of Duty (the original)! There's no hiding for minutes till you can't get a better position, its running like hell and shooting at angry nazis! I died at least 300 times in United Offensive!! This is mainly due to poor level design and being trapped on a bad quicksave. For instance, mission #2 is a lesson in frustration - take two steps get hit with a bomb and be almost dead. Take two more steps get hit with a bomb and die. There's a lots of frustrating trial-and-error moments like that. You will be doing some missions over and over again, to get through it. Apparently, the developers tried to extend the game's length by adding too many scripted events to the game that force you to perhaps move when you may not want to. Overall, the frustration component and linearity is what brought down United Offensive's score.

Multiplayer is enhanced with 11 new maps (a nice mix of urban and rural settings) and three new modes of play - including Base Assault, Capture the Flag and Domination that requires teams to capture and hold key locations, and base assault, which challenges one team to conquer and the other to hold them off. In Base Assault, each team gets 3 bunkers to defend, the objective is to destroy all three bunkers before your opponent. There are now vehicles in some of the maps as well, from jeeps to various forms of tanks. The tanks are very powerful, but if you're a good player it's not hard to ambush tanks :) Another pretty cool multiplayer addition is a ranking system that rewards players for helping their teams to win the match. You start out as a private, and move up in rank as you get kills, or help out your team in a number of ways.

Is the expansion worth your hard earned money? The answer is surprisingly simple - definitely yes! As I said, the game is even shorter (and more frustrating) than Call of Duty, but for an expansion pack it still gives a GREAT EXPERIENCE overall. It takes the MP and totally gives it a new flavor, with tons of new maps, weapons, gameplay modes, and vehicles. So, if you own Call of Duty this is a must have.

Related links: Call of Duty- United Offensive homepage, SP demo (230MB), cheats

System Requirements
Minimum System Requirements: Full version of Call of Duty, Pentium III 800MHz or Athlon 800MHz or higher, 128MB RAM (256MB recommended*), 3D card with 32MB RAM (100% DirectX 9.0c compatible, T&L - ATI Radeon, NVIDIA GeForce, Matrox Parhelia), 8x Speed CD-ROM drive (1200KB/sec sustained transfer rate), 16-bit sound card (100% DirectX 9.0c compatible, mouse, keyboard.

For multiplayer: Internet (TCP/IP) and LAN (TCP/IP) play supported, Internet play requires 56 Kbps (or faster) modem and latest drivers, LAN play requires network interface card and latest drivers

*Users with 128MB of system RAM in their computers may experience long level load times between maps. For best performance on a system with 128MB of system RAM, it is recommended that you select as part of the installation the low-end performance option. This performance option installs lower resolution textures that may lessen the overall visual quality of the game. If for any reason, you wish to remove the low-end performance option, simply uninstall and reinstall the game.

snd: 5/5 - extremely realistic (turn EAX on), very satisfying effects, well done voice-acting, some minor bugs
gfx: 4/5 - still pretty good (Quake 3 engine on steroids!), fairly realistic explosions, weather and particle effects, a few dated looking interiors and low resolution textures, a lot of clipping issues
playability: 5/5 - pretty intense, highly authentic atmosphere & fights, 13 new missions (~8-10 hours), new multiplayer modes and additions, pretty linear (over-scripted), lots of frustrating trial-and-error moments, only 1 SP mission with a drivable vehicle, poor AI, few bugs
genre: WWII FPS
release: September 2004
developer: Gray Matter Studios
publisher: Activision
Overall: 88%

last 10 comments:

Craftos(11:10 AM CEST - Sep,22 2004 )
I wonder if it will be any more than original CoD. I have bought it after price dropped by half, yet was still disappointed with it. Overall it's a bit better MOHAA (nicer graphics). Game was advertized as "nobody fought alone", but enemy always were shooting mainly at me during city fights (with co-bots), especially MGers. Half of game was typical quake-like run-and-gun. No stealth missions. Enemy spots you always after you cross specific point no metter if you are proned and hidden in bushes. :(

FX5900(07:03 PM CEST - Sep,22 2004 )
if it's so good, why not give it a higher rating than doom3?

th4t1guy(11:02 PM CEST - Sep,22 2004 )
That's a bit harsh. What's more likely is that HX just likes FPS games more than the rest and tends to get caught up in the hype. This is why FPS games always score consistently higher than any other genre on this site. If you thought Call of Duty was boring, then maybe you should try playing a different genre, instead of getting burnt out on the same old thing.

*edit* this was a response to a deleted post

Samadama(01:46 AM CEST - Sep,23 2004 )
I completely agree with Craftos. Word for Word... :lol:

GALLO(09:37 PM CEST - Sep,23 2004 )
And now seems like its gonna be even more run-and-gun.. =D>

ambazador(04:43 AM CEST - Sep,26 2004 )
great game:)))i dont read reviews about this one, for what?

index only ;]

Ozieo(03:47 PM CEST - Sep,26 2004 )
Lame addon. There's no fun in a game with enemies who keep on respawning with tons and tons. Dumping you in the action with bullets fly by with millions doesn't make this a good addon,, it only shows the poor concept of what could have been a good FPS, but failed miserably due to poor scripting. I give this a well deserved 55%

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