I wasn’t all too familiar with the original Operation Flashpoint game except for the Ghost Recon games which featured tactical combat on larger maps, I did became familiar with ARMA which was the spiritual sequel to the first Flashpoint game. With it enabled us to drive vehicles, fly choppers and combat planes. However, with the loss of Bohemia Studios from Codemaster’s stable of developers, they had to turn to their own to develop Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising.
The PC version is muddled with mediocre graphics thanks to the limitation wherein the code for the PC version and console version is the same, leading to a less detailed version on the PC (lower resolution count) and lack of Direct X 10 support. The animation looks ok, the smoke, vehicles, however, lying prone and trying to peer through the grass is murder thanks to the pixilation of the bushes. Also, due to the lower graphics, finding dead bodies to procure ammunition or weapons is a chore (if in the forest). It’s also annoying at times wherein you can’t see the enemy, but they seem to be able to see you. Also lacking in the game is in the form of other beings in the island. Seriously, there’s no signs of any animal life other than people in the game, makes it seem unnatural.
The story’s quite short, and we don’t get to use vehicles that much, save for multiplayer use. The story’s straightforward: take over the island. However, just to make things interesting, the developers scripted the game to have 2 perspectives: a.) from a member or Team Saber (Force Recon), b.) a member of Dagger Team (Marines). Team Saber’s mission mostly follows covert actions from sabotaging radar stations, SAM sites, to observing enemy generals and rescuing POWs with little or no support. Whereas Dagger Team would give us direct confrontations versus the opposing forces. Mouse/Keyboard control’s poor, making us use the X360 Controller instead since the controls are better mapped out there than on the PC. Other missed opportunities in the single player matches are the ability to swap out weaponry at the start of the mission. Other bad gameplay details is the lack of transportation available. Only a few missions wherein we could drive a humvee or truck to go from one point to another, and we would be forced to walk/run for quite a long period of time before reaching our destination.
Other frustrations include the dumb allied AI that sticks to the exploding tanks of fuel in one mission. Even if they’re ordered to stand down, move to the spot closest to us, they would still wander off. And unlike the AI found in Rainbow Six Vegas, they don’t move cover to cover when ordered to breach and clear a building.
Definitely not worth to pick-up or play. ARMA II has a much better feel of warfare simulation (and Modern Warfare 2, has the arcade style FPS well executed). See the other reviews next time!