It also handles tricky first-person cover brilliantly. You'll hold the left shoulder button to snap to walls and barriers, then use the left stick to lean in and out. You can do this standing, crouching or even prone - a tactical alternative to running-and-gunning. Killzone 2 did it first, but this does it better.
What the game lacks in originality, it makes up for in functionality. Your tutorial takes place in a Pakistani-mountain-embedded terrorist training course which, in a body-swapping twist, you actually raid as a SEAL later. There are also several sections where you'll guide a rocket-firing MUSA demolitions robot via remote control. These may be isolated moments of creativity, but no-one can say Warfighter isn't solid at its foundation.
Multiplayer is no exception; it treads the line between Call of Duty's fast-paced close-quarters gunplay and Battlefield's 3 weighty heft, borrowing the latter's Frostbite 2 engine though dropping the framerate down and removing environmental destruction.
Your classes are a selection of 12 Tier 1 operators from across the globe (though, as mentioned at the start, they all look pretty much the same), whom you can kit out with guns equipped with various stocks, optics, muzzles and barrels, unlocking more as you progress.
Guns form the main incentiviser, because apart from an efficient Battlelog matchmaking system, and seen-it-all-before equipment such as C4, wire cutters and tomahawks (all more balanced than CoD's gunships and packs of dogs but nowhere near as fun to use), there's not much to keep you going.
Multiplayer is hardly broken, but it ultimately does nothing new, and while Warfighter could get away with that in the campaign, it can't in a sphere which includes a bevy of not only competent, but fantastic online shooters.
Medal of Honor: Warfighter offers no shock or revelation. There's no No Russian moment. There's no indicated trajectory where the genre as a whole is headed. But fundamentally, it works. Guns feel ferocious and enemies are satisfying to shoot (quite crucial in a shooter); memorable set-pieces break up the flow, and there's an earnest multiplayer to get involved in.
So enjoy your military shooters - they only come around a few times a year.
Unambitiously pursues five years of first-person shooter trends rather than buck them, but there's still fun and function to be found here, along with a steady stream of killer set-pieces.
- A healthy, solid, eight-hour shooter
- Some killer set-pieces
- First-person cover works brilliantly
- Rivals do multiplayer better