Chad's Medal of Honor Heroes 2 Review
No Split-Screen Multiplayer
No Vehicle Use
Coming off from the tragedy that Medal of Honor: Vanguard (Wii) turned out to be, there were a lot of improvements made that really helped Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 (Wii) turn out to be an excellent game! The innovative controls, new levels, different modes, different control schemes, new guns, and an online mode for the Wii that actually doesn't require friend codes in order to play against an opponent(s) online! With all of the new things added, Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 is definitely the best FPS game, Wii Wi-Fi game, and overall one of the top three games currently out for the Wii.
The controls featured in Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 are none like you've ever seen before. Like Vanguard, this Medal of Honor is a port from another system, but unlike it, almost all of the controls were completely redone to fit the Wii perfectly. Now the basic game mechanics include pointing the Wiimote at the screen to aim, while moving around with the analog stick on the nunchuck. The different buttons on the controllers are used for other things such as shooting, crouching, using the scopes, switching to the pistol/grenades, etc. Using the motion sensitivity on the controller really helps give this game a better feel, and a more involved since of playing which no other FPS has.
The weapons are amazing, especially with using the controls with them. You can choose between the SMG's, Thompson (Allies) and MP40 (Axis); the LMG/HMG's, BAR (Allies) and Stg44 (Axis); the rifles, M1 Garand (Allies) and Karabiner (Axis); the sniper rifles, Springfield Rifle (Allies) and Gewehr (Axis); the bazookas, M1 Bazooka (Allies [and Axis during online play]) and Panzerscheck (Axis, but only for use in campaign mode); the shotgun which is available and the exact same for both the Axis and Allies; and the pistols, Colt .45 (Allies) and Luger (Axis). Each of these weapons are very unique and some include specialized controls to give them an overall better feel when using them.
The shotgun is one with specialized controls. After shooting the shotgun, the only gun that doesn't automatically pump, you flick the nunchuck up and you will manually pump it like a real shotgun. When going through levels and shooting it, like said in other reviews, "...it really does make you feel like an action hero...." by shooting, pumping, and shooting again. Another weapon with innovative controls are the bazookas. To aim the bazooka, you must put the Wiimote face down on your shoulder, like you would a real bazooka, and you take careful aim through the scope before firing. Some people don't like it, and say you look silly doing so (which you can turn it off in the options menu), but I thought it was a pretty cool addition instead of having the default of press A to use the scope. Plus, when it is by your ear, face down and you fire it, through the speaker in the wiimote you will hear the bazooka firing. The last weapons with specialized controls are the sniper rifles, the Gewehr and the Springfield Rifle. When zooming in to snipe using these, you can twist the Wiimote to the right to zoom in, and to the left to zoom out. This works really well because if you are on the other side of the field, you can easily hit an enemy target by zooming in. If you get tired of holding the Wiimote twisted to zoom in, you can always click C to lock it, to give your wrist a break but still be zoomed in.
A gestures trailer showing some of the controls.
Some of the other controls that were really cool include grenade tossing. When you switch to grenades, by pressing A you can pull the pin and "cook" the grenade. This way, once thrown it will blow up about the same time it hits the ground, not letting anyone escape from it. Throwing grenades is where it gets fun. You hold the trigger button and a little blinking, yellow target will appear somewhere on your screen, depending on where you are looking. From there, you bring the Wiimote up vertically, and flick it forward. Depending on how fast and hard you flicked it forward, the grenade will travel farther. To reload, you have an easy way, and a fun way. The easy way is pressing up on the D-pad, but the fun way is flicking the Wiimote up. Again, it feels really cool to do this. There are a few other tricks using the innovative controls such as the melee attack, where you thrust the Wiimote and nunchuck forward (or just press Z on the nunchuck), or doing an "About Face", basically a 180 degree turn, you hold C while not zoomed in, and flick your nunchuck to the left. This is great for enemies that are behind you that you want to surprise.
This video shows doing some of the more innovative controls such as setting a timer and zooming in with a sniper rifle.
Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 is one of the first, and one of the few games out on the market that allows you to use two completely different control schemes. One is the Elite controls, which I explained all of the nifty little tricks that are possible when using it above, but the other is the Zapper control scheme. The Wii Zapper has gotten plenty of bad reviews, and almost no good reviews or feedback. A lot of people won't listen to the reviews and buy it to see if what they say is true. Let me tell you something though, the Wii Zapper works really well in some places, but not so much in others. In this game, because holding the zapper correctly means no access to the face buttons on the Wiimote, a few things were changed. What was the sprint button before, C, is now the button used to crouch. To sprint you have to tap up twice on the nunchuck's analog control stick. Also when using the Zapper, you are pretty much forced to flick it up in order to reload. There were some things that were unchanged though, such as zooming in with A, shooting with B (but now it feels like an actual gun), and switching weapons using the left and right on the D-pad. Some of the innovative controls were taken out of this mode though, including the bazooka aiming, sniping's zoom, and throwing grenades now always travel the same distance.
You can see the Wii Zapper in action!
There are also more controls for things in other modes, such as the Campaign mode. You will run into many thing here that require a few, "Campaign Mode Only" controls. One of these is using a radio. There is a radio in almost every level, and is actually pretty fun to use. When you go up to the radio and press "-" to use, you will have 30 seconds to find the hidden OSS frequency, which is always different. Usually it will be saying some such as "Come in Eagle! Eagle, are you there? Come in!" To tune in to the frequencies, you have to turn the Wiimote vertical and use the motion sensitivity by leaning it left and right until you find the right station in which you'll press A. There are a few other radio stations including a music station, so that's another cool thing added. You'll also run into many, heavier type weapons that you'll need to use. Some are huge artillery in which you turn around a wheel by moving the nunchuck in a clockwise/counter-clockwise motion to turn, and then B to shoot. Mortars are turned using the Wiimotes sensitivity, and changing it from leaning up to down is used by the analog stick. MG42's are held by putting both the Wiimote and nunchuck up vertically, and turning them both left and right to aim. Also, a campaign mode only feature in the easiest difficulty is the lock-on system. By aiming the cross-hair at an enemy, then press Z on the nunchuck it will lock on, so you can move around while shooting and still ensure a hit!
Unlike Vanguard, there are three modes this time. These are Campaign, Arcade, and Multiplayer. I've already commented on some of the controls of the Campaign mode, but trust me, there is a lot more to it than just the controls, no matter how awesome they are. As to the Arcade mode, it is an on-rails shooter of the campaign mode, and the Multiplayer mode is definitely the biggest attraction of the game, where you can connect online and play against your friends, people you don't know, and much, much more. The modes features in Heroes 2 are similar to other FPS games, but are very unique in their own way from the controls, to the levels, to the objectives you must and can complete throughout each one.
The Campaign mode is the main mode for Heroes 2, but not exactly the most played. The story goes like this: you are an OSS Operative going in with US Rangers divisions in WWII like scenarios, but instead of going with the rest of the troops, you have your own objectives to complete. These objectives will range from using the radios, to blowing up safes and taking the documents inside, to even using artillery to hold back reinforcements so the rest of the company you are stationed with can get through. Some objectives are compulsory, while others aren't. There are even some that repeat and some that are level specific, such as blowing up German U-Boats whilst making your way through the Port level.
The Campaign Mode Trailer.
You start out on the Beach, in which the in-game tutorials really help you get the feel of the game. This is a really small level and very easy to get through. You basically learn how to throw grenades accurately, reload, tell if you are about to die, among other things while mowing down Axis troops. The objectives on this level are very easy to clear, with only two secondary objectives to complete, while you can complete the others by following the Rangers division you were deployed with. Before you level, you learn what your mission is, and pictures are shown, just so you know what some things look like. After the intermission where this is happening, it will show you a letter saying everything again, just without the pictures. Throughout each level there are also checkpoints, in which if you die you can always restart from there, and even if you turn your Wii off and then play it later, you can still start from that checkpoint if you prefer.
The first mission in the Campaign Mode: Beach.
The Port level is after the Beach, in which you learn how to do a few other things. You learn how to use the sniper controls and learn how to use the bazooka's innovative controls. This level is where you first encounter a radio and must use it for the first time. Another thing is setting a charge. On the U-Boats you must go up to a certain part of it, marked with a big arrow over it, and point your Wiimote at the screen and twist it left and right to set the timer. Once it is completely set, flick the Wiimote back and run off while the timer in the top right of your screen counts down to let you know how much time you have to get away. You'll also run into a safe here for the first time if you want to complete a secondary objective. To blow these open you have to use a grenade.
The City is the level after the Port, in which, as always, you will face new challenges and learn new things. This level features your first use of artillery, in which you have to move the nunchuck in a counter-clockwise/clockwise motion to turn it, and press B to fire upon three objects located on a roof, and later three objects located on streets. After the City, you will go underground to the Sewers while the explosives you set up above are still going off. The Sewers really doesn't offer anything new, just some old things such as rationing your ammo, setting charges, etc. When you complete the Sewers, you'll move onto the Monastery. Once there, you will learn a few new things, most of them dealing with using artillery. You will be able to use mortars and an MG42 in the level, as well as a shotgun that is compulsory to have in order to complete a certain objective. After this level, there isn't a whole lot more to learn, just your basic WWII type scenarios, but you do get to use one of the cooler things that I doubt has ever been done before, a mine sweeper. In other words, you move around the bombed city with a metal detector, trying to find all of the mines to make it safe for troops to come in, which is really awesome.
While completing Campaign mode, you can get awards that don't really do anything, but they are just cool to have. Also, you will move up in ranks such as Private, Specialist, Captain, etc. Some of the awards you can get vary from killing so many enemies with a certain gun/grenades/melee attack, to completing a mission without being killed once. There are three different difficulty settings: Green through Hero, Green being the easiest. Now the objectives are the same throughout all of these settings, but you have less vitality the harder the difficulty, so you have to be more careful and just as well take better aim unless you feel like having to do the same level over and over again just to keep dying at the same place. One of my bigger complaints for Campaign mode was the lack of vehicles. Unlike most other modern First Person Shooters, there is no vehicle use at all during Campaign, nor any other mode.
Arcade mode is the second mode featured in Medal of Honor: Heroes 2. This mode really isn't a whole lot, but it is still really fun to play. You go through all of the levels you did in campaign mode, just without a whole bunch of objectives to complete. Instead, it is like a shooting gallery type mode where you shoot the Axis troops that pop up on the screen in order to advance. This mode is really good to just relax in, and give you a retro feel of the FPS genre. This mode is definitely my favorite to use the Wii Zapper in though. Because in this mode you are basically pivoting your Wiimote to shoot, why not involve the Zapper since it works really well to pivot, and gives it a more gun-like feel to really complete the whole shooting-gallery type action. In this mode there aren't a lot of controls, just reloading, shooting, crouching, and zooming in, but that's it.
Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 Arcard Mode Trailer.
Now the best mode in the entire game to me, and pretty much anybody else in the world is the multi-player mode. The only problem is this is also a little disliked because according to the back of the box, the game can be up to four players. Unfortunately, even in the multi-player mode it is one player only, the whole way. Despite the fact that the back of the box is misleading, the multi-player mode is still an amazing mode that will keep you occupied for hours and hours. How does it work? Instead of using friend codes like all of the other online game thus far, it uses EA Nation, so you can play against anybody else around the world that has this game. You can still play with friends though, they just have to have this game too.
Online gameplay is really fast-paced!
The mechanics of the online mode are simple, you first create an EA account. These are really easy to setup, maybe taking thirty seconds to two minutes depending on how slow you are when using the on-screen, Wii keyboard. Whatever you choose your account name to be won't be the name that will show up, rather the name that you can use to log in with on any MoHH2 game, on any Wii, anywhere. Once you've created it, you create a persona for the account, in which will show up as your screen-name in games. Once you've chosen your persona, you will be in the main part where you can select three things: Lobby, EA Leaderboards, and My Profile. Also, you can see how many people are currently online, how many kills and deaths you have, your current score, reputation, and your rank worldwide.
I'll start with My Profile. If you click on this, you basically are shown two options that lead to a FAQ and a tutorial on the whole online mode and your profile. The EA Leaderboards option will lead you to three more options. My EA Leaderboard, Top 100, and Weapon Leaders. The My EA Leaderboard option will show where you rank, and one hundred people with a lower, and higher rank than you. The Top 100 option leads you to the top one hundred players for MoHH2 currently, showing their persona, ranks, kills and deaths, and score. The last option under this menu is the Weapon leaders, which basically shows you who has the best total score using which weapons as the name implies. Now before I get to the Lobby option, I'm going to go ahead and tell you about the EA messenger. Once you've past the point where you choose your persona, you can press "2" on your Wiimote to bring up the EA messenger. Here, you will see menus such as All, Recent Opponents, Friends, Friend Requests, etc., which are pretty much all self explanatory. Let me explain how it works. By pressing 2 again, you can search for a player, such as a friend. It will bring up all of the persona's similar to what you typed in. By clicking on one you can select to send a message, give feedback, block, send friend request, and cancel. Most of these are self explanatory, but a few aren't. Sending a friend requests will make a blinking guy appear at the bottom left of the persons screen in which he will open up EA messenger, go to friend requests, and either accept or deny your request. Giving feedback basically means it will send a message to EA saying the person was cheating, had a good attitude, etc. to help the reputation category. Last, is the send a message option. Because the Wii is more family oriented, there is no voice chat, but to take it even farther to prevent potty mouths to send flaming messages, all of the messages are preset. Some are "I'm looking for a challenge; Great Game; Want to start a game?; I'll add you to my friends list" etc. Once sent, where the little man would appear after a friend request is now a little envelope in which going to all, you should see the player that sent you it and by clicking on it, you will read the message and you can reply with a preset message, or just go back out.
Notice how you login, and what the lobby really looks like.
The long awaited Lobby option in multi-player mode will now be broken down. Once you click on the Lobby mode, it will show all of the current games and their specifications in a list. It will show whether the game is password protected, where you need to type in the correct password to get in; if the game is rated, an EA icon will be present if it is rated; if you can use all weapons or not, it will show two missiles to indicate that all weapons can be used; the game's name, in other words, what the game was called by whoever set it up; the type of mode it is, whether it is capture the flag, death match, or team deathmatch mode; the level it is played on; how many players are currently in the room out of how many players can be in the room total; and the control scheme it uses, whether it is Elite, Zapper, or Both. Also, by using the '+' and '-' buttons you can scroll through two other different menu's within the lobby. Highlight any game and press '+' to see a number of things. You can see the server's info, as well as each player that is in the game. By highlighting a player you can see their stats that would show up on their screen after they sign in so you can keep track of the skill level of the players in each game without actually playing against them. By pressing '+' again you can search within the lobby a lot easier. You can narrow down your search, similar to how it looks when starting a game. You can choose what type of guns are on/off, if grenades are on/off as well as team killing autokick and many others. Just click done at the bottom after you've filled it out and if their are any games available that have those specifications then they will show up for a much more, user-friendly way of narrowing down what you like.
Creating a match is simple. While in the Lobby you have to press C and you will be taken to an option looking screen. Using the Wii's on-screen keyboard you type in the game name, and if you make it password protected then you also type in the password. Then you choose the game's mode and which level it will be on. After that, it will list weapon types and you can select whether to allow them or not, including grenades. You can change how long the match will be, and if it will stop at a certain number of kills/captures of the flag. Finally you will be able to choose the maximum number of players, from 2 to 32. Then you select Done and your game will be automatically setup and appear in the lobby for people join. When inside a game, you can also say preset messages. To do this you must press 1, then select one from the menu such as "Need Backup", or "Enemy Spotted".
The levels in the multi-player mode are similar to the levels you play on in Campaign and Arcade mode, but with some areas closed off to make them better for a mass amount of people. Some levels are good for sniping, other for grenade spamming, and some for using any gun of your liking. The gameplay in the multi-player mode is very fast paced, depending on how many players are present, there will almost always be action for you to be a part of. When entering a game, you get to choose which team you are on if it is CTF or TDM modes, as well as your weapon and uniform in all modes. At any time you can change these by pressing "+" and moving over to Player Options where you can basically re-customize your player. Also by pressing + it will bring you to the pause menu which will list (if applicable) whose team who is on, who is in the room, how man kills and deaths someone as, and their current score for the game. On the pause menu, there is also a voting system. Using it you can vote kick a player, such as if they are killing their teammates too often, and you can also vote to change the map. The votes last for about thirty seconds and if a majority votes yes then whatever the vote was for will happen.
Some CTF online play.
Now that the gameplay is out of the way, its on to sounds and graphics. Being a Wii game, it isn't going to have the amazing graphics of the PS3, or the Xbox360, but still, it gets by with what it has. The online and arcade mode usually don't have anything wrong with them other than they aren't good when comparing them to other systems. The levels look good, the traditional enemies faces are all the same, etc. The campaign mode does have a few problems though including the occasional enemy sliding right through a wall, and shooting you from behind it where the only way to kill them is with a grenade getting right on the wall. There are a few other things, such as after blowing up an enemy in one of the levels that was near a wall, he flew through the wall, but his leg was sticking out of the wall before he disappeared. The sounds were definitely excellent. Hearing almost everything through the speaker in your Wiimote from moving around, to reloading your gun, to hearing the guns fire, to hearing the radio in campaign mode.
The replay value of this game was both good and bad. The online multi-player I doubt will ever get old until they come out with a better online FPS for the Wii, which should take a while to release another without the use of friend codes. Plus, you can setup matches with your friends and other people all over the world to test your skills and try to climb up in the ranks to the highest possible. The other two modes though don't exactly hold the amazing replay value as the online mode does. Still, the Arcade mode is still fun to play when you are bored and feel like relaxing, but the campaign mode, in all honesty wasn't even that fun to re-complete it on another difficulty setting, let alone go back and try to complete 100% of each level.
Gameplay 5.0 - With three exciting modes to choose from, the gameplay definitely gets a perfect score.
Graphics 2.5 - The graphics weren't much improved from Vanguard, just a few minor tweaks.
Sound 5.0 - Another perfect score for the sound. Besides hearing the main things from the TV speakers, you'll be able to hear the things you would be able to hear the minor things as if you were actually there from your Wiimote speaker.
Storyline 4.0 - The whole WWII scenario is kind of getting old. They are sprucing it up though by adding things like they did here with you being an OSS Operative going in with regular squads on secret missions.
Controls 5.0 - The innovative controls using the Wiimote and nunchuck combination are definitely awesome!
Lifespan 4.5 - I didn't really comment much on this in the review, because it didn't really change much in the game unless you change the difficulty setting. Nobody likes dying but sometimes it is just too easy to stay alive.
Weapons 5.0 - The weapons themselves weren't too amazing, but combining the controls with them really shot up the score. Also using the special ones that are only available in Campaign mode was fun.
Replay Value 4.5 - Again, you really aren't going to be spending much time replaying the levels, even on a different difficulty setting in campaign mode too often, but the arcade mode is good and the multiplayer mode has excellent replay value.
Overall, Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 is definitely the best online game out for the Wii right now. It has the most innovative controls any FPS has ever seen, and just was well holds three awesome modes that you'll find yourself getting lost in for hours at a time. There were a few bad things such as no split-screen multiplayer at all, nor where the graphics anything special, but everything else in the game makes up for it and more. I would recommend picking up a copy of this game if you can find one!
- Medal of Honor
- Medal of Honor: Airborne
- Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
- Medal of Honor: Allied Assault Breakthrough
- Medal of Honor: Allied Assault Spearhead
- Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault
- Medal of Honor: Warfighter
- Medal of Honor Frontline
- Medal of Honor: Airborne
- Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
- Medal of Honor: European Assault
- Medal of Honor: Rising Sun
- Medal of Honor Frontline
- Medal of Honor Vanguard
- Medal of Honor: Airborne
- Medal of Honor: European Assault
- Medal of Honor: Rising Sun