Medal of Honor Airborne Review
World War II first person shooters used to be so common it was ridiculous and comical. I just about expected Marino to strap on a helmet and join into the fray. But the past year or so they have certainly dropped in numbers. One series that in some circles was viewed as getting stagnant was Medal of Honor. Basically it just went to the well one time too many times. Nevertheless the series is back with Medal of Honor: Airborne for the PlayStation 3 and I'm here to let you know if it has recaptured the fun.
In many ways Airborne goes back to the glory days of the MoH franchise but throws one new twist in the mix which we'll talk about in a moment. I'm not going to claim that Airborne revitalizes the WWII genre, nor am I going to say it's a franchise killer either. It's a good game, with or without the WWII theme attached to it. The story of Airborne has you in the role of Private First Class Boyd Travers who is a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division. The "catch" here is of course the paratrooper theme. Surprisingly there is very little paratrooping in the game. Sure, each mission does start off with you leaping out of a plane with a whole mess of your buddies, but after that it's a normal shooter. So for about fifteen seconds or so in each level you get a new gameplay element. It's a neat fifteen seconds to be sure, but a bit of a letdown.
Each level begins with a briefing of why you're about to be dropped from the heavens into a raging battle. You learn what you're supposed to do after you hit the ground and where the targets are. You have some control over where you land once you leap out of the plane. There are a few "safe" areas that are designated by greens smoke. Land in these areas and you'll at least have a couple of moments to meditate before the real action starts. Land in one of the non-green zones and, well, you better be ready to rumble as you will most likely be surrounded by mean people looking to hurt you and none of your buddies will be close by. So, in short, go for the green. It also helps to be able to pull off a good landing where you don't crash and have to spend valuable moments untangling yourself from your chute. "Flaring" while landing will enable you to stay upright and you literally hit the ground running. While it is usually better to land in the safe zones there are areas on the map where you can land on top of a tower and use it as a good sniper point.