We count down the 32 Dangerous Cheat Codes this holiday season!
- WATCH NOW -
Honor and Duty: Arcade Edition Reviewed by Cyril Lachel on . Honor and Duty is not a good game. I don't mean that in the sense that it's repetitive and more than a little derivative, but rather that it's thoroughly busted. It's a game too filled with bugs and technical problems to be playable, and too simple and outdated to be enjoyable. This is not how World War II should be remembered. Rating: 1%
Honor and Duty: Arcade Edition
«
Honor and Duty: Arcade Edition Honor and Duty: Arcade Edition Honor and Duty: Arcade Edition Honor and Duty: Arcade Edition
  • Review Score:

  • F
It has been an exceptionally good month for gamers who love first-person shooters. We saw Battlefield take us back to World War I, Call of Duty shoot us into space and Titanfall 2 bring in the giant mechs. The truth is, I don't know which of these action games is best. I haven't played them and, knowing me, probably won't any time soon. But what I can say with complete confidence is that Honor and Duty is absolutely not the best first-person shooter of the year.

With a name like Honor and Duty, I went in expecting Strange Games' newest release to be something of a spoof on the genre. You know, sort of like what Scary Movie did to Scream. But this isn't a parody; it's an honest attempt to create a serious World War II shooter for modern consoles. And while I certainly commend the effort, the finished product is a shockingly bad first-person shooter that somehow manages to make all the worst decisions in every situation.


What we have here is a wave-based first-person shooter set during World War II. You choose from one of five different classes represented by fake Team Fortress characters and set out on a path to slaughter all the enemies before they kill you or blow up your base. Each wave will increase the amount of army men you'll need to kill, while simultaneously bumping up the difficulty. Manage all that and you'll move on to another stage with a whole new set of objectives.

Had Honor and Duty stuck to this admittedly simple blueprint and simply delivered a solid shooter, it would have been in good shape. The game still wouldn't have been able to compete with the likes of Call of Duty or Battlefield, but fans of the genre could have gotten some enjoyment out of the budget-priced shooter. Oh what could have been. Instead of delivering a solid first-person experience, the developers have botched every aspect of the design. This is a game so buggy and ill-conceived that I'm a little worried I won't have enough time to cover everything.

Let's start with the obvious problem: Honor and Duty looks like a half-finished PlayStation 2 game. All of the textures are rough, the characters use sparingly few polygons and the whole thing looks like the developers ran out of money at the worst possible time. And did I mention that the game has a hard time processing a lot of enemies on the screen at once? This generally results in a moment where everything grinds to a halt and the game runs in slow motion.

Honor and Duty doesn't just look like a PlayStation 2 game, it also plays like one. Although the name suggests it's trying to mimic Call of Duty, the game doesn't make much of an effort to copy the gameplay. The aiming is all over the place, never snapping to the enemies like most modern first-person shooters. No matter if you're looking down the sights or simply using the crosshair, the imprecise guns and squirrely aiming make killing the attacking soldiers needlessly frustrating.

Honor and Duty (PlayStation 4)Click For the Full Picture Archive

Of course, it certainly doesn't help that our hero is a bullet magnet. While it's nearly impossible to hit your target, practically every shot fired by the enemies finds its way to you. Even when you think you're safe behind a giant rock or wall, those bullets still seem to find their way to you. No matter how careful you are, there's no way to avoid taking massive amounts of damage at pretty much all times. Your only respite is to find the health packs lying on the ground.

The outdated graphics, archaic gameplay and magical homing bullets certainly try their hardest to sink this awful shooter, but they aren't the real problem with Honor and Duty. This is, without a doubt, the single buggiest game I've ever played. It feels like the first version of an Early Access game. There's a pre-alpha version of Lost Embers I played immediately after this game that felt like a perfectly polished next-gen experience compared to Honor and Duty. This game was not ready for release.

This became painfully clear right from the get-go, when I couldn't even select a character and start a game. It wouldn't even let me back out, forcing me to completely close the game and start over. This was just the start of what turned out to be one headache after another.

Sometimes when you die, you'll respawn into a world without enemies. This may sound ideal, but it really means that you're trapped in a stage without any way to advance. There's a large invisible wall keeping you from moving on, so all you can do is explore the boring stage and quit the game. This didn't happen once or twice, but at least a half dozen times. Each time I had to quit the game and hope it saved my progress.

Honor and Duty (PlayStation 4)Click For the Full Picture Archive

Things only get worse in the next stage, when you're asked to protect a fragile building from soldiers with missile launchers. This is no easy task when it's working properly, but I found that the building I was there to protect would often start with only 1% health. That means that anything from a missile to a bullet to a strong gust of wind would knock it over. The mission would start and end in seconds, giving me no time to kill all 25 bad guys.

It was here that I was forced to give up. After trying absolutely everything, I realized that the game was broken to the point of being unwinnable. You can spend money between the rounds to equip different weapons, but it's utterly pointless when the structure you're trying to protect starts with only 1% health. If this isn't a bug, then it's the developers making a political message about the futility of war.

For what it's worth, Strange Games is currently working on a patch that will add a difficulty option. But while I welcome that idea, the difficulty really isn't the problem. The real issues involve the poor gameplay, the unacceptable performance and the dozens of bugs that make this game unplayable. This is not a situation where weak gamers need an easier game; what we need is something that fixes the bugs and problems rampant throughout the entire experience.

Even if Honor and Duty didn't have all of these technical issues, it would still be as barebones as it is repetitive. There's a pop-up that promises online multiplayer and new maps, but the developers have a lot of bug squashing to do before they even think about adding DLC. This is a game that should have never been released in its current state, and it makes me wonder how it got certified in the first place.

Honor and Duty is not a good game. I don't mean that in the sense that it's repetitive and more than a little derivative, but rather that it's thoroughly busted. It's a game too filled with bugs and technical problems to be playable, and too simple and outdated to be enjoyable. This is not how World War II should be remembered.
comments powered by Disqus