|Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X 2 PC Video Game|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Games|
|Written by Dan Ferguson|
|Monday, 27 December 2010|
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Game Play Final Thoughts
There seemed to be a lot of little things that kept a good game from being a great game. That's a hard hit during a time when gamers are getting an excess of great games. It's like releasing an average movie during the holiday season. It just doesn't seem as good because the holiday movies are usually awesome. The little things covered the entire map. The airplane in the benchmark didn't have moving surfaces, the user interface was not intuitive, there was a larger learning curve to use the experience points then there was to learn how to fly.
There was one major thing that kept the game from being great; repetitiveness. Most of the battles felt the same. All the enemies flew the same. Most of the features and extras were rehashes of the same missions. The planes all felt the same. It was just too much of the same thing over and over.
There was some good stuff too. The terrain was beautiful and based on satellite imaging. Gaining experience allowed you to choose your unlocks and you could unlock things that actually help you win more battles. You can play any of the game modes with a friend.
The debate between realism and fun doesn't have a solid answer. The game was very playable and accessible for a larger audience. This was definitely more important than staunch realism. But some of the game modes suffered badly by being reduced to brainless button pushing.
HAWX 2 Video Game Conclusion
HAWX 2 is definitely the best looking flight game I've played in a while. It gets high marks for beautiful terrain based on satellite imaging. There was nothing striking about the plane models, but they looked good. The color schemes, music and presentation of the campaign missions were well selected and set the mood well, but they all seemed to blur together, especially since they were just like the campaign from Modern Warfare 2. The explosions were well-done, maybe a little over-the-top, but I think it makes for good fun.
The plot was as generic as any cold war novel and quickly forgotten. Espionage, traitors, stolen nuclear warhead, insurgent groups, it was moderately entertaining, but not a movie I'd watch again. You at least get to participate from multiple perspectives and your not always confined to dogfighting. The UAV and AC-130 missions were a nice touch of flavor. Unfortunately all the UAV missions were exactly the same. You spent more time trying to keep the cursor steady than actually paying attention to the plot. It was dumbed down way too much.
When it came to straight-up dogfighting there was much lacking. In advanced levels it too often boiled down to ten enemy planes endlessly circling you while you dodge non-stop missiles. I often caught the enemy flying backwards while firing off a missile. About the only way to get a lock was to slip your curves until you stall. Of course the second this happens you've got 5 missiles coming at you. Between the dogfights you got short snippets where you could use other weapons which were a blast. But those snippets were typically timed rounds before the next dog-fight sequence.
There are plenty of extra things to do included with HAWX 2. But nearly all of them are variants on the single player missions. The multiplayer games had a few additional game types, but it was hard to find others online since the HAWX community is small. In order to fly all the planes, players have to spend time earning experience and unlocking abilities, weapons and planes. This provides a good amount of replay value since you can play the same boring missions while focusing on a challenge or task.
Overall the game had enough enjoyable parts to recommend to people that enjoy flying games. The HAWX series is good enough that it could still be saved. I know this game is good enough that when it hits the bargain bins there just might be a community to play with. Ubisoft should really consider dropping the price on the game and take less revenue in order to build that community and focus on a better sequel or a really awesome patch. Presently HAWX 2 is availble as a PC download for $33.49 or $54.99 for the Deluxe edition.
+ Good Terrain
- Dogfights very repetitive
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