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Battlefield Bad Company 2: Vietnam Review



At a price point once reserved for full-featured expansions, gamers have quickly acclimated to the fifteen dollar set of multiplayer maps. As Modern Warfare 2‘s Stimulus and Resurgence (and expectedly- Black Op‘s similarly priced) packs have shown, a mountain of money can be made for a nominal effort. Which makes Battlefield Bad Company 2: Vietnam so surprising; after an industrious year where the studio collaborated on Medal of Honor and Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit, DICE could have easily phoned this one in.

Yet, the developers duplicated the exertion poured into 2009’s Battlefield 1943. Instead of merely offering a handful of new landscapes, the team meticulously created new weapons, vehicles, and player models- balancing the whole thing with as much as historical verisimilitude as a FPS could allow. With the exception of the game’s curious stats keeping, Vietnam is a reminder of how expansion packs should be handled.

Most noticeable is the removal of scoped weapons for all but the Recon class. Whereas Battlefield: Bad Company 2‘s loadouts favored conscientious medium to long-range encounters, Vietnam beings the action up close and personal by having most players gaze down the iron sights. As such, it’s less likely to be unexpectedly one-shot by a distant foe. More likely, you’ll hear the impact of incoming ballistics, which tender an opportunity to respond accordingly. While most of the Vietnam‘s rifles and machine guns evoke the firing rate and stopping power of contemporary weapons like the M4 and M249, the shining exception is the flamethrower. Capable of turning a cluster of enemies into charcoal, the weapon creates a blaze large enough to obscure an imminent headshot.

Each of the four available maps (with another unlocking once 69 million support actions have been initiated) have been tuned to distinguish Vietnam as its own game. With trenches, concentrated pockets of foliage, tunnels, and impeccably placed choke points, the title adeptly blends skillful design decisions with the visual signposts of the war. From the telltale, red tracer fire  which glints above the napalm-scorched landscape in Hill 137 to the serpentine river which coils through Cao Son Temple, the game’s environments will reverberate within gamer’s minds after console’s are powered down. The sole fault of the game’s visuals are they inclines which appear traversable, but occasionally aren’t.

Despite its potency, BBC2: Vietnam isn’t without its problems. Mirroring our own contemporary skirmishes, Americans get all the cool artillery. Whereas Uncle Sam’s standard issue includes MKIIs outfitted with formidable .50 Cals and Hueys brimming with rocket pods and M60’s, Charlie gets a three wheeled rickshaw. Despite the technological disparity, Vietnam bends the rules to generate balance between the two forces. Between an ample amount of hardware for NVA soldiers to liberate and UH-1s which about as durable as radio controlled copters, the fight is consistently fair. Players concerned with maintaining their carefully honed K/D ratios might take issue with the title’s stats and rankings; most others will be too busy igniting enemies to care.

Much like last year’s Battlefield 1943, Battlefield Bad Company 2: Vietnam delivers an accessible, captivating multiplayer shooter which delivers a constant cascade of thrills. While the genre is replete with competition from both earlier Battlefield iterations and the chronologically comparable CoD: Black Ops, Vietnam manages to find its own niche among the picturesque rice paddies, forests and deltas. As aftermarket DLC, the title ranks among the best.

About Robert Allen

With over 35 years of gaming experience, Robert 'DesertEagle' Allen is Tech-Gaming's resident worrier/warrior who spends his days teaching at three colleges and his nights devoted to JRPGs.

37 comments

  1. Damn, I wish this was a standalone game.

  2. Whats the big deal with American equipment? In the war, I’m sure some of the VC took and used M16s.

  3. Yeah, I like it all, but DICE couldn’t have added some new modes. Conquest, RUSH and DM get old after playing them in BFBC2.

  4. oh gawd. Another COD hater/BC lover. The series will always copy the original.

  5. Just buy BfBC2. It’s about $20 these days. Roll your own GOTY edition!

  6. I loving the speed and weapons of the game so far. Great for $15!!!

  7. meh, the unlocks aren’t all that great. B+ at the very best.

  8. I don’t think the Stimulus and Resurgence packs were that popular. No one I know bought them.

  9. too bad I sold my copy of Bad Company 2…EA makes this it’s own game, please.

  10. With the game’s soundtrack and great heartpumping moments, I’m glad I dropped the 1200 point for it. But some of the choke point are pure shit.

  11. Tigers Tranny Mistress

    I hope you cash that EA check before they goes bankrupt. COD BLOPS walks all over REALLY BAD company. thats where the real players are. Not playing this junk thats the same as 1943.

  12. What is it about FPS that brings out the grammar lacking Neanderthals?

  13. Battlefield 1943 had a demo that people could try before they bought the full version. This one doesn’t have that. WHY?

  14. You know I first started coming to this site because some guy named Deserteagle wrote these really cool reviews of first person shooters. He knew the weapons, tactics, and really seemed to love them.

    Then gradually he lost interest it seemed. He started talking more about JRPGs and stuff that didn’t seem like the same person.

    With this review, I’m glad the old Deagle is back.

  15. I always like the kind of fuzzy look of the BF games. They manage to take the blockiness off the graphics.

  16. Great review!

  17. How many players does the game allow in a match? I guess MAG has spoiler me.

  18. Yeah, I like it all, but DICE couldn’t have added some new modes. Conquest, RUSH and DM get old after playing them in BFBC2.

  19. I’ve been enjoying this way more than Black Ops. Much better that 4 or 5 maps, with a few recycled ones.

  20. One of the best mp games I’ve played in a while. Totally addictive and I haven’t seen a bit of lag. Great going DICE. Youve redeemed yourself for MoHs weakass MP.

  21. I wasn’t really thinking about getting this before. Now I need to find a 1600 point card.

  22. Sounds pretty cool. I think I’ll pick it up.

  23. This seems to be getting the kind of scores I’d expect. 1943 was classic.

  24. Hows the PS3 version in comparison to the 360 one?

  25. 2.5 million players would disagree with you.

    Thats 45 million dollars in maps!

  26. Hows the online community. Do people work in teams or is it all deathmatch minded people?

  27. No impressions from Sage? This would have man a great 2 person review!

  28. Or NOLA. Does he like FPS games at all?

  29. If the Americans had big eyes and purple hair, it could have got an A+ for sure.

  30. Your academic tone belies the depths of your adoration. Still, I might indulge.

  31. if its anything like BC2, I’ll pass. I didn’t like it. Everything felt too close up, like you were playing a FPS wearing binoculars.

  32. Took the plunge today. I feel it’s worth the $15 price. Good FPS with some cool weapons.

  33. Hows the vehicle handling in this one? Can you fly the chopper in a straight line in this one?

  34. I’ve heard that it feels a lot like BF 1943. All they did was reskin it and add new weapons.

  35. Yeah, I noticed the stats are totally screwed. Have you heard when they’re going to fix them?

  36. Any deals of point cards this week? I’d like to pick this up.

  37. It’s be ringing in the new year shooting people down, it looks like. Downloading the new BF patch right now.