PS3 Review – Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising
Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising, developed by Codemasters, is a tactical first person shooter that aims to show the user a very realistic experience. But in a market already saturated with shooters, is this title worth a look?
The game places you on the island of Skira after talks have broken down between Russia and China over an oil reservoir and the U.S. intervenes to help out Russia. The game features many missions and secondary missions that are presented to you as you progress through the story. Throughout the game, all parts of the island are eventually used at some point. Though it is not completely open world, it is separated into different sections.
This isn’t to say that the sections are small. The map is actually a bit overwhelming at first, especially considering it is a first person shooter. There are many different courses of action when attempting to complete a mission. Some of these include running in and shooting, sniping, and sending your squadmates in to handle the dirty work. The options are all there; it’s up to you how you want to play.
The game is probably one of the most realistic titles ever released. This level of realism will actually turn off a lot of people. The game features one-hit kills, for example, though they are rare. Additionally, while running for prolonged periods of times, your heart rate will begin to rise, and the controller will begin vibrating with the pulses. As you run for longer periods of time, your heart rate will increase, thus resulting in a quicker vibration from the Dualshock 3. Eventually, you will reach a point where you are so tired, you will have to slow down to a jog as your heart rate returns to normal.
If you are hurt, you can’t simply wait for your health to go back up. A field dressing must be applied to the wounds that have been inflicted, or your character will bleed to death. The severity of the injury dictates how fast your character will die when injured. Injuries are indicated by a color coded outline of a human body on the top of the screen.
The game’s realism also extends to the weapons, in which actual ballistic systems have been implemented, so the weapons behave as they would in real life. This may not seem like a big deal, but it’s all these little things that make this game feel so realistic.
One thing to take note of, though, is that as the difficulty is turned up, all the little hints and help disappear off the screen, and there is no enemy radar screen to help. You must hide and look for things such as movement in the dirt to track your enemies. Ammo and health are taken off the screen as well, forcing you to keep track of them yourself.
The controls are pretty good in Operation Flashpoint. There is no sluggishness or delayed response, but they do take some getting used to for those of us used to the Call of Duty series, since they are a bit different. However, considering the game takes a more tactical approach, the controls become second nature once you adapt to them.
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