Thursday, February 27, 2020

Rainbow Six Vegas 2 (Xbox 360) Good, but feels like a minor upgrade

April 2, 2008 by · 7 Comments 

Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: VegasImage from WikipediaRainbow Six Vegas (1) was my favorite game of all time for the 360. What made it my favorite, even when pitting it against many other great games that came way after it (Halo 3, Gears of War, etc) were two things:

  • It focused on strategic thinking and tactical action
  • It has a cover system where you actively control how and when you are covered, not just via some sort of auto-cover

When I speak to many people that prefer other games, though, it seems that their biggest complaint about Rainbow Six was that it was too difficult (button combinations). This leads me to believe that many people that preferred the mega titles of other franchises, were led more by ease of play and sheer gunfire power rather than a game where its complexity allowed you the flexibility to do more. For example, Rainbow Six’s online play is the only online play I’ve seen where even groups that are not some ‘clan’ actually behave like a team; because the game forces you to think that way, and because once you master the controls, it is quite enjoyable to play that way (try the VIP escort, for example).

Because of all of these great attributes, I was expecting Rainbow Six 2 to be a huge upgrade. I was wrong, but I’m not unhappy.

I was wrong because there are many things about the second part that are almost identical to the first. Even some of the maps in Terrorist Hunt are the same (disappointing). There could have been more work done there. The biggest additions I’ve noticed so far, however, seem to be:

  1. You can now sprint ala COD4 (it would have been nice to add laying flat as well so that it could be easier to snipe)
  2. You can now have more control over your characters’ development and gear as well as your coop partner
  3. In split screen campaign, you still have the rest of your team with you (4 people total, you, your friend, + 2 computer guys you control). Your team has a few new things (GPS), but they don’t add much to the experience.
  4. You now have to earn your gun upgrades with specific actions versus just with experience.

Take those 4 things away, add the rest of the campaign to part 1, and I don’t think I’d be able to tell the difference. For sure not in Terrorist hunt where maps are repeated, and game play is almost identical.

I guess this just comes to prove that if something ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Rainbow Six 2 is a fun game that continues where Part 1 left off, but only with a few upgrades here and there.

So, for me, what would have been a full upgrade? Well, for one, bugs. Part 1 had many bugs, and it feels some of them still continued on to Part 2. One of them that really really really irks me, is when bad guys spawn, particularly in Terrorist Hunt.

In real life, people inhabit space regardless of whether you are there to witness it, not so in Rainbow Six Universe. If you know that someone may be in a room and you throw a frag grenade, nothing will happen. First you have to open the door (see them) and then when they’ve ‘appeared’ you can throw the frag grenade. This ruins the whole experience for me, and makes me feel that bad guys’ behavior is based on quantum physics whereby you have to observe them to actually commit them to that point in space. Weird and makes the game feel unpolished at times. Other bugs include weird twitching and limb behavior by both the dead and the living, but moreso the dead. We’ve all seen in part one the odd body sitting there twitching after being shot. This is just plain wrong and makes the game feel morbid at times.

Other ‘detail and polish’ improvements could have included showing where the bullet that killed you came from so that you could improve your game play (now you get a vague arrow in the direction). Also, it seems like the same spanish (and english) phrases of part one were used for the bad guys “that b%%tch owed me money” is a classic, but jeez, so old now, they could have come up with new ones.

All in all, good game, just don’t expect a huge update.

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