Army of Two: The 40th Day
|a game by||Electronic Arts Montreal, and Buzz Monkey Software|
|Platforms:||XBox 360, Playstation 3|
|Editor Rating:||7/10, based on 2 reviews, 1 review is shown|
|User Rating:||8.3/10 - 8 votes|
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|See also:||Third-Person Shooter, Army of Two Series|
Unlike most warfare shooters, Army of Two: The 40th Day continues to stand out from other games in its unique gameplay mechanics, mature story and cynical look at the world of privatized military. For fans of Gears of War and Spec Ops: The Line, Army of Two: The 40th Day is a gritty and mature story that tackles honor, loyalty, deception and conspiracy.
Two Sides to Every Story
On the surface, The 40th Day might look like any other grey and brown third-person shooter from the 2010s. And in many ways, that description is accurate. But what sets an Army Of Two apart from other games is its unique cooperative gameplay mechanics.
When taking part in firefights, players will have an aggro meter that flicks between the game’s main characters, Tyson Rios and Elliot Salem. By directing one character’s fire towards enemy forces, their attention will be drawn away from their partner. This allows players to flank and strategize around the open levels through rerouting, regrouping and other meanouvers. Levels are varied and detailed, giving the game a world-hopping vibe that sees players battle in Shanghai cityscapes, offices and military compounds.
Customize Your Soldier
After completing objectives and missions, players are rewarded with money that can be used to customize their gear as well as improve their arsenal. With four weapon types to use in battle (primary, secondary, special and grenades), there’s a fair amount of customization available to players to pimp out their arsenal.
Players can add new barrel mods, stocks, magazine upgrades, and even aesthetic changes like gun sleeves and custom masks to show off their personality. This customization is a nice change of pace from similar games that released around the same time, and the sheer amount of customization is actually daunting at times considering how many options there really are.
No Friends, Lots of Problems
Army of Two: The 40th Day’s gameplay focuses heavily on cooperative solutions to intense firefights. Playing with a friend can be exciting, engaging and intellectually stimulating as you and your partner shoot your way through level after level.
That said, if you’re playing solo then things aren’t as smooth sailing. While the game does offer a single player cooperative AI teammate, the developers can’t match the same sort of spontaneous cooperation you get from another person. The AI does generally do what you need it to mid-battle, but sometimes the computer can get in the way or make silly mistakes that will leave you wishing you had a friend playing alongside you.
And while the coop elements are Army of Two’s biggest strengths, there is a lack of focus and priority when it comes to these more engaging game mechanics. Specifically, the ‘back to back’ mechanic that has Tyson and Elliot face away from one another in a slow-motion firefight, there’s no way to trigger these situations manually. The pre-scripted element takes away the feelings of autonomy and tactical thinking that otherwise would see the game reach greater heights.
The game that continued the story from the first Army of Two game, The 40th Day is one that is remembered fondly for its unique approach to cooperative, third-person gameplay and fun, bombastic gameplay.
- Unique shooting mechanics that set the game apart
- Exciting blockbuster plot that improves over the first game
- Split screen, public and private coop options available
- Solo partner AI is serviceable, but not great
- Multiplayer is dead
- Graphics can be muddy and uninspired compared to other shooters