Screenshot of Medal of Honor Game Cover

Medal of Honor is a videogame developed in 2010 by Danger Close Games and published by Electronic Arts. It can be played on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Windows and is the 13th installment in the franchise. The game is based on Operation Anaconda and depicts some of the missions in the War in Afghanistan. The game was aimed as a reboot of the franchise, but failed to score as high as the best titles in the series.

Key facts about Medal of Honor

  • Medal of Honor can be played in both single player and multiplayer, but has a fairly linear campaign.
  • The graphics were greatly improved and the missions look amazing, although night operations failed to impress.
  • Medal of Honor features better visuals and sound effects than the recent prequels but failed to capture the greatness of the best soundtracks.
  • Most players quickly made the transition from the short single player for the larger maps of multiplayer and its thrills.
  • Medal of Honor was released with quite a lot of bugs but most of them were fixed quickly by the developers.

The Medal of Honor games

The best Medal of Honor games up to date are the first title produced in 1999 and Allied Assault of 2002. Those games could be played on PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Windows and were made famous by their story and soundtrack. Over the course of time DreamWorks Interactive, 2015 Inc and Danger Close have developed the games in the franchise. All of them were supposed to combine fast-paced action with tactical decisions in both single player and multiplayer.

Other popular Medal of Honor games in the series were Infiltrator, Pacific Assault and European Assault released in early 2000s. The first game in the franchise that could be played on PlayStation Portable was the Heroes spinoff. Its sequel Heroes 2 could also be played on Nintendo Wii before Danger Close took over in 2008. The multiplayer games bear many similarities to Battlefield 4 and Battlefield Hardline, both receiving critical acclaim. The latest installment in the series is Medal of Honor Warfighter released in 2002 and using the Frostbite 2 game engine.

What is Medal of Honor

Medal of Honor is a first-person shooter videogame that uses dedicated servers for consoles and PCs. It was developed by Danger Close, published by Electronic Arts and uses the Frostbite game engine. The narrative unfolds in Afghanistan, the first game in the series to cover this war. It received mixed reviews and generally scored less than the average game in the franchise and significantly below the original.

Gameplay of Medal of Honor

The gameplay of Medal of Honor is centered on stealth missions, hostage rescues and raiding. The game uses the modified Unreal Engine 3 game engine, to improve cover mechanics. Coordination is essential in both single player and multiplayer missions, especially when players compete against each other. They can exchange weapons, ask for ammunition and generally work together to accomplish missions.

Screenshot of Medal of Honor Hot Zone
Screenshot of Medal of Honor Hot Zone

There are significant differences between the gameplay of Medal of Honor in multiplayer and single player. There are plenty of missions during the campaign set when players use tactical weapons to take out enemies from afar. Snipers feel a bit overpowered, while hand to hand combat was not sufficiently developed. Players can also commandeer vehicles which are easy to steer, but not that accurate.

EA Dice developed the multiplayer of Medal of Honor, hence the differences in terms of gameplay. Players get to choose between three distinct classes, snipers, special ops and rifleman. They level up and unlock better gear, new weapons and they can also customize existing guns. Furthermore, players can call in air support and other offensive weapons to support the team or destroy a fortified position.

Basically, there are two opposing sides in this first-person shooter, the Coalition and Opposing Forces. Each of them use different weapons, with the coalition relying upon American gear while their foes use Taliban guns. Overall the arsenal of weapons is well-balanced, so players don’t get an unfair advantage over their opponents. Players who make it to level VI game Tier 1 rank receive more points when killing an opponent.

Plot of Medal of Honor

The plot of Medal of Honor starts in the second half of 2001 during the initial stages of the Afghanistan war. Tier 1 operatives set out to recover an informant, but get ambushed by Chechen forces. They manage to reach their target and during debrief, he tells them that as many as 1000 enemies combatants are gathering nearby. The team tries to secure a local airport and prepares for the deployment of Mountain and Airborne Division.

Screenshot of Medal of Honor Imminent Danger
Screenshot of Medal of Honor Imminent Danger

Tier 1 teams perform reconnaissance missions and eliminate insurgents, but they get caught in crossfire. American Rangers get pinned down under heavy fire and insurgents attack from all sides. At last, Apache assault helicopters arrive at the scene and annihilate the insurgents to save the traped forces. They scramble to destroy fortified enemy positions, but two of the team members are left behind. The others defy orders and return for them, but they end up being captured by insurgents.

Back in the American base, Colonel Drucker prepares an extraction plan but they only receive limited support. The Colonel decides to disregard orders and use the Ranger Quick Reaction Force to save the stranded special ops. With the assistance of a CIA predator drone, they manage to locate the missing soldiers, in a Taliban bunker. They rescue some prisoners, but one team member succumbs to his wounds. The final mission is actually a prelude for the next installment Medal of Honor Warfighter.

Development of Medal of Honor

Medal of Honor was presented as Operation Anaconda, based on the missions it depicts. Eventually the developers chose to drop the name and the first teaser trailers were released in early 2010. Beta testing quickly followed, although the first deadline was missed due to unforeseen technical issues. Eventually, the game was released on time across all consoles and PCs.

Where can I download Medal of Honor?

Medal of Honor can be downloaded from the Danger Close Games and Electronic Arts website. Danger Close is the same company that developed Command & Conquer the Tiberian Twilight and the Lord of the Rings the Battle for Middle-Earth. Both games can be downloaded from their website and Lord of the rings fans should also check out Middle Earth Shadow of Mordor. EA fan boys with a keen eye for first-person shooters could download Battlefield 4 and Battlefield Hardline here.

Screenshot of Medal of Honor Vehicle
Screenshot of Medal of Honor Vehicle

What are others saying about Medal of Honor?

Medal of Honor didn’t receive the high ratings the developers and publisher expected it to. On the other hand, it scored higher than both the prequel and the sequel marking a high point for the series. The single player campaign was criticized as too short and the missions too heavenly scripted. The multiplayer however was wildly praised for emphasizing team play and encouraging players to work together.

The graphics failed to impress most of the fans of the franchise, despite the obvious progress from the previous game. The shaky frame rate and subpar textures prevented this first-person shooter from reaching its full potential. The reboot encouraged EA to introduce more innovative features and explore new battlefields.

Medal of Honor tournaments

Medal of Honor has a fine multiplayer mode that saves the day for those unhappy with the single player. It’s a great way to spend some quality time with a friend, completing missions in cooperative mode. Tournaments play however is limited and fails to deliver the adrenaline rush of a truly competitive multiplayer. Counter Strike Global Offensive, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3, Rainbow 6 Siege or F.E.A.R 3 can definitely rub that itch.

My rating of Medal of Honor

I still remember the feeling of awe I felt 16 years ago when I played the first game in the series. I didn’t expect the original Medal of Honor to be as good as it was and I spent many hours playing. Naturally, I thought that it will take many years until developers will be able to come up with a worthy successor. Allied Assault was even better and as far as I’m concerned that’s by far the best game in the series.

The 2010 version of Medal of Honor is good by first-person shooter standards, but quite average for the series. The single player campaign is way too short and the story lacks dramatization and consistency. I really felt for each of the protagonists of Allied Assault and it broke my heart when they got killed. I’m still waiting for a game that can make me care for each member of the team and their well-being. This iteration is a bit above average which is not good enough for the series, so I’ll rate it 7 out of 10.

Overall Score