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Mercenaries 2: World in Flames
While I like a good shoot 'em up as much as the next gamer, this one just left a sour taste in my mouth. I actually got bored playing this one, even with all of the smash it up destruction that you can do. Heck, even my kids got bored with this one. So, I don't know what that says to you, but to me - it says leave this one on the shelf.
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Well, there really isn't much of a story here, and what is there - isn't good. Basically, you are a mercenary, that has a massive gaming world to play in, where you have tons of cars that allow you to attack and cause some major messes wherever you want. You can roam around, killing those on your list, smash your cars into anything, and cause some great explosions. But, with all of the bugs and a really bad game AI that doesn't really provide much of a threat at all, and some missions that repeat over, and over, and over... well, you come up with a really bad shooter that gets old fast.
There are three mercenaries here in the game to choose from, each with a supposedly unique, but obviously not, story line. You are basically out for revenge against the man who hired you and then stiffed you on the payment. In fact, you can really skip most of the story lines and the cutscenes and be fine with playing and not missing anything - it's that bad. For about the first hour or so, you will have some fun with the game. As the missions are all new, and you get to blow up some major stuff. After that, it goes downhill as everything just repeats itself.
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For a shoot 'em up, destruction type game, this one will not leave you satisfied. The weapons really suck, the explosions aren't too great either, and even the car crashes aren't too... well, crashy. The weapons overall are just weak for a game that should be all about shooting and destruction, and you can't even really count on the damage that they do until you get some of the bigger weapons like the rocket-propelled grenades. But, you have to actually find a shop, go in and buy the ammo if you are using these heavy artillery weapons, which takes all the fun out of them too. It's actually easier in this game to jack a tank or heli instead of destroying one - which should be the other way around if you ask me for this type of game.
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You play in Venezuela, and the field of play is gigantic. But don't let this fool you. There is not much that you can really do mission-wise, so the size of the game area doesn't really matter. Now, once you get past the boring missions, you'll go out and start just destroying stuff because it's there. But, if you really want to try to get to the end of the game, this isn't the way to go. And, you will get penalized for killing civilians and if you miss, well, you can piss off a whole gang and have them come after you. You will be taking jobs from these gangs too, so it's not a good idea to make them mad, as no more work will come from them if they are irrirated with you. Another down side to the massive map, it will literally take you the longest time in the world to get where you need to go, as your missions will never be close to each others. The map is hard to decipher as well, it's blurry and hard to find where you are and where you are trying to go. So, the huge game area is a downside in the end.
Basically, for a mercenary that is trying to take out their revenge on a bad boss, well, you don't really have a lot of freedom in doing it. And, the vast majority of the quests that the gangs give you are like escort quests, or they have you fetching something, which is boring and doesn't allow you to shoot much of anything at all. Now, doing these quests will earn you money and sometimes will be part of the story line overall - so it's not to say that you shouldn't do them. And, if you try to kill or capture some of the high profile targets, it ends up backfiring on you more often than not. I mean, if you are a mercenary, you see someone that a gang you know wants - you kill them or capture them right? Well, this means that the other gangs will be mad and try to kill you and the soldiers that are friendly to you will also suddenly be ready to kill you off too.
We probably should talk about the enemy that you'll be fighting, but it doesn't really matter much. Basically, what you need to know is that the enemies are too easy most of the time. The computer AI is so bad, that is doesn't matter. If you get hurt, all you have to do is hide somewhere. The enemy chasing you won't look for you. Most of the time, you can walk right up to them and they won't even fire on you... I mean, come on... At least try to shoot me!
There is just so much wrong with this game overall, that I can't even begin to start scratching the surface of it all.
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Let's not even get started here. I'll post the screen shots below and you can see for yourself just how bad this area of the game it. I was amazed that they wouldn't put at least a little more time into beefing up the graphics - but hey, they didn't do it for the story line, why worry about the graphics?
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If you're looking for a bargain bin game to add to your collection, I really wouldn't even spend the money for this one. You're better off to find another game, any other game, even a board game, than spending the time on this one.