Hidden and Dangerous 2
History repeats, historians often say, and after seeing all of the World War II titles on the market, I tend to agree. Hidden and Dangerous 2 looks to repeat history once again, but this time from the perspective of the British Spectral Air Service, an espionage unit used to cause mayhem behind Axis lines. But in a saturated market with plenty of worthwhile WWII titles, is Hidden and Dangerous 2 good enough to make history worth repeating again?
Hidden and Dangerous 2 is one of the many games in the recent trend to bend a few genres into its fold, but first and foremost, it's a squad-based tactical shooter with an emphasis on espionage -- throw in some RTS and RPG elements for good measure. The game is unlinear in how you accomplish missions, whether you prefer the run-and-gun method or meticulous planning and execution (though HaD2 accommodates the latter much more). Variety is also one of the game's fortes; with missions ranging from squad based tactical missions to solo espionage missions. The tactical mode is handled really well, and even allows you to pause time and issue orders which gives you a lot of freedom in how you tackle situations.
Multiplayer takes a cue from Battlefield 1942 and combines vehicles with large, open maps ' it feels a bit slow, but is still a lot of fun.
HaD2 sets out to create an immersive and realistic WWII setting, and it accomplishes this goal fantastically. The graphics and audio both play a large role in this as they ultimately create an authentic WWII setting. The draw-in distance goes quite far so there's a lot of detail in the environments and the ambient and moody music fits very well with the WWII theme. Great voice-acting and sound effects top off the package.
HaD2 pays a hefty price for its realism: the unrelenting difficulty level. One-hit kills, sharp enemy AI, not-so-sharp ally AI, and confusing mission objectives all share a role in the blame. Some might find the difficulty an attracting aspect, but too often the game will rely on trial and error to bypass the harder areas. Needless to say, frustration will often result.
Unfortunately, HaD2 has a lot of problems aside from the steep difficulty. The interface is, at best, clunky and often results to a lot of micromanagement to accomplish simple tasks. Bugs are frequent in HaD2 as well, in both sloppy programming and AI screw-ups. Right from installation, I had problems and they permeated throughout the game. And while enemy AI is clever enough, troops under your command will sometimes ignore your staggered orders and do absolutely nothing.
For everything Hidden and Dangerous 2 does right, there's something that it does wrong. HaD2 ultimately creates a frustrating experience stemming from both the deep difficulty and buggy programming. But, underneath these problems lies an extremely realistic and engaging squad-based combat sim. If you can overlook the problems, there's a lot to be had here; but for most gamers, it won't be worth the time or effort.
Download Hidden and Dangerous 2
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP