Operation Flashpoint: Red River, the sequel to Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising, is a first person shooter (fps), but not just any fps. It is a tactical fps that gives an excellent war game experience. This game, like its predecessor, is different than other fps games where you just run and shoot. Here you have to think as well. You are not just a soldier or marine but a leader and you have to make choices how to command your fire team. This makes it a good game; this gives this game its mojo.
The story of this game is not great, but also not bad. It has something new to the conventional US vs. Middle East. You are the leader of Bravo fires quad and you mostly work together with Alpha and Charlie squad is some or other way. More on the squads later, let’s first take a look at the story. In the Middle East, terrorist from Tajikistan makes attacks on the US marines. This forces the US marines to invade Tajikistan to clear out any terrorist threats. Through several missions you clear out the threats completing several objectives. While busy clearing out terrorist threats, the PLA (People’s Liberating Army) which was also invading Tajikistan, opens fire at the US marines. Now the US marines retaliate against the Chinese Forces in the rest of the missions. The story is not that addictive like some of the other fps from the past year, but it is also not bad. You do not play this game for the story; this game has something else as its X-factor. The story scores 7/10.
This is a beautiful game, not the best I’ve ever seen, but still good looking. The environment like the grass and trees are spectacular. It is nice to just stop and look around. The one thing about the grass is, it is only visible as grass for a few meters, after that it is just green patches. Buildings are not the best looking, but not bad either, more or less average for a game of 2011. People on the other hand are really detailed, but again not the best of the best although it is above average. The weapons does not look that good compared to the environment and people. It does not have that metal glare or shine. The visual effects are quite good, with dirt all over the screen when bullets hit the ground or a wall near you. You can also see the bullets flying through the air, see explosions, burning flames with smoke and it looks nice. This is really not an ugly looking game. Sound and the sound effects are also about average. It sounds cool hearing all the guns and explosions, but not much more than that. The guns sound relatively realistic and what is really good, is the echo you hear when firing your gun in some areas. The graphics, visual effects, sound and sound effects also score 7/10.
So as you can see, this game is about average, but what makes it a great game then? Why do I call it a great game? The answer is the gameplay. I deliberately left the gameplay for last.
You are team leader and you must command your team by giving them commands. Commandments are divided into 4 major groups namely maneuver, follow, tactics and suppression. Each of those has 3 commands which you use throughout the game. This game is not easy like other shooters, because if you get shot you bleed. If you bleed, you die. Therefor only one or two bullets can kill you if you are hit in the correct spot. You cannot go hide if you get shot and then you will heal by some kind of miracle. You actually need to patch your wounds self to stop bleeding. Once bleeding has stopped, you need to heal your wounds. You also need to do this for your team mates. If you get hit so bad that you are incapacitated and cannot patch yourself up, you need to command your team to come do it, just like they will ask you to help them. This adds to the realism of the game and makes it really fun. As you complete missions or kill enemies, you gain rank points and levels. You use these to add mods to your weapons, or unlock new mods and weapons. You also use this to upgrade yourself and your team. You can also play this game in co-op mode with a buddy. The gameplay really makes this game great. It is hard but fun and it is really enjoyable. It is something else rather than conventional fps gameplay. The gameplay deserves a solid 10/10
This is a great game, not so addictive, but still great. There are some flaws here and there and a glitch or two in the game, but nobody is perfect right? If you are into conventional fps games and don’t like tactical shooters, this game is not for and you won’t enjoy it. But if you like tactical shooters, this game is definitively for you. It is worth it to play this.