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 Mercenaries 2: World in Flames 
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Post Mercenaries 2: World in Flames
Mercenaries 2: World in Flames
by: Sandra Prior

There have been some very mixed receptions with EA's offering in the form of Mercenaries 2. Some have loved it; some have lambasted it or tried to kill it with fire. Whatever the opinion has been, it has required a lot of playing time. It could have been less to be perfectly honest, but there is something a little compelling about running around the free-roaming world that Mercenaries 2 is set in.

Taking on the role of one of three mercs, each with their own bonus, is a blast. Usually from a charge of C4. Or seven. Teen. This is the best bit about the game, everything is breakable in some way, shape or form. Anything can be driven, flown, steered or stolen. And everyone can be killed, preferably in the most brutal way possible. Bullet, grenade, C4, RPG, gun butt to the brain, all are options. One can also use a range of vehicular manslaughter attempts to kill, or air and artillery strikes to wreak havoc. Destruction is really optional and only limited by supply and imagination.

We were not too concerned with the look of the game (good, but a little glitchy) or the sound (also good, loving that Norse accent and Duke Nukem-esque one-liners) but the Al is a bit of a nightmare. Not the playable characters, unless one is playing co-op with a particularly dense chum, but the enemy units. They are thick as the proverbial two short planks, which we believe are on display next to the original horse you rode in on. This means that one can single-handedly take out an entire mountain fortress with nothing more than a carbine, some grenades and two bombing runs, suffering damage only once you've fallen off the mountain by accident.

Enemy units cannot shoot, have no tactical sense and for some reason will only man gun emplacements at random. A quick sprint through enemy lines allows players to turn around and spray bullets on a now totally helpless load of soldiers.

For all that, it is still loads of fun. Gameplay gets even better in co-op but we were dismayed at the DRM system that will not allow anyone to install the game on a machine that has no internet. Well it installs, it just won't run. There will be a lot of folks who cannot play this one. Bad form.

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Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:16 pm
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