Medal of Honor Multiplayer E3 2010 Preview

The multiplayer portion of Electronic Arts' Medal of Honor reboot is veing handled by Battlefield series creator DICE and use the Frostbite engine used in Battlefield: Bad Company 2. At first glance, the MoH multiplayer seems like a mod or re-skinning of BF:BC2. After a bit of hands-on time at E3 with the PlayStation 3 beta and some time at home with the PC beta, it feels like a cross between BF:BC2 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 with some subtle differences.

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The two beta maps exhibit this duality. The first, Helmand Valley, feels very much like a Battlefield map. When played in the "Combat Mission" gametype, which has attacking players destroying objectives to open up new areas of the map to strike, it feels like BF:BC2. Teamwork is required to break the defense and respawns keep people on the frontlines.

The other map, Kabul City Ruins, is straight out of MW2 with infantry combat taking place in a bombed out city. Snipers hide in buildings, while other forces flank around the sides. There are no bases and the spawns rotate around the map as one team makes a push and succeeds. Regenerating health and ammo boxes replace the class system from BF:BC2.

Weapons can be customized to some degree and players will earn defensive or offensive abilities as they rack up kills, though rewards are granted upon hitting different points thresholds. This is a subtle change from straight killstreaks, but ultimately feels the same. Players must choose between one or the other. One of the offensive abilities, the Tomahawk missile, is a carbon copy of MW2's Predator missile.


My concern with MoH multiplayer is that it is too set directly between BF:BC2 and MW2. That is, it isn't as featured or deep as either of those games, instead sacrificing depth and creativity for a mixture of the two. Missing features from BF:BC2 include enemy spotting, vehicles, and classes. From MW2, perks are nowhere to be found and the game doesn't feel as crisp.

The game is still in development and this is just the beta, but it would appear that having DICE contribute the multiplayer game could be an attempt to quickly get the game to market before Call of Duty: Black Ops. In its current state, it feels like a step back from BF:BC2, sadly simplified.

Medal of Honor is due out on October 12 for the PC, PS3, and Xbox 360. The multiplayer beta is currently running on the PC and PlayStation 3. The Xbox 360 beta has been delayed, but should kick off soon.

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