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Electronic Arts



T (Teen)



Q4 2003



- Excellent recreation of the Pacific theatre for World War II

- Damn good soundtrack and sound effects

- Good depiction of WWII era weapons



- Rated Teen? You’ve got to be kidding!

- Opening scene around Arizona just plain wrong

- A little on the short side for a FPS

- Enemy AI is all over the place, and hit system is messed up



Review: Medal of Honor - Frontline (XB)

Review: TimeSplitters 2 (PS2)

Review: Secret Weapons Over Normandy (PS2)



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Medal of Honor: Rising Sun

Score: 7.0 / 10


Medal of Honor: Rising Sun has drawn fire from some groups for depiction-style killing of Japanese soldiers. These arguments infuriate me as we’ve been “killing” German soldiers for years and suddenly with the graphic depiction of Japanese aggressors dying people become enraged. It’s hypocritical where the death of one nationality is acceptable and another is not.


medal of honor rising sun          medal of honor rising sun


Politics aside, Medal of Honor: Rising Sun is decent FPS that could have used a little more work to make that leap into great game standings. The teen rating also comes up as a big flag for me, any game that is centered around war shouldn’t be given a teen rating – I’m not saying that teen can’t play it, but only if their parents think it's appropriate.





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The game opens with a literal rude awakening on -- the attack on Pearl Harbor.  After your character wakes up onboard one of the ships, he joins in against wave after wave of Zeros, he eventually get thrown into sea and control the main gun on a PT-boat. For the most part, the game takes place on solid terra firma; but there are a few vehicle sections (an elephant in one case), which will have you wishing that you could get off the damn thing and control yourself.



Game play is all over the place, most people will get killed a few times while getting used to the reload times (I’ve got to stop playing Unreal Tournament before I play realistic games) and figure out how to maneuver with these controls. Most gamers will have success in the first player missions once they memorize the spots where the enemies cluster and figure out the best way to engage them.


medal of honor rising sun          medal of honor rising sun


The main character and the available weapons look freakin’ awesome, it’s the way that enemies will interact with the surroundings that will leave you shaking your head. It's a common sight to see enemy characters running at full tilt at a wall unable to pass through it.  Or my personal favorite, two guys trying to walk through a door simultaneously brings to the fore some insane clipping problems.


While bitching about the problems with the enemy, if you manage to hit your enemy with a bullet, I’d make sure to hit him repeatedly… head shots aren’t necessarily fatal, and shots to legs can usually be walked off after bouncing around for a few seconds. (Pretty weak for an “realistic" game.) The game itself is about an 8 to 10 hour game in singles mode, a little on the short side, but it does have a lot of hidden areas that you won’t find on the first pass through the game. The multiplayer modes are pretty good (assuming your TV is big enough) with some pretty big maps to ‘frag away on.


The game is not all bad however, the soundtrack is downright awe inspiring. The score and sound effects sounded amazing on a mono pickup and when I switched to a stereo TV, they blew me away. The score does an excellent job of setting the mood and the sound effects are so realistic that you'll wonder if you left Band of Brothers playing in the DVD player. The visuals are good too, the game does look pretty (in a war sort of way) and does an admirable job of recreating the Pacific theatre.


All in all, Medal of Honor: Rising Sun is the kind of game that would have benefited from some additional QA work to remove the bugs that detracted from an otherwise decent shooter.


- Tazman

(February 21, 2004)


"Mother, space is a vacuum, not a place that needs to be vacuumed."

        - Father (The Brak Show)

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