Navy Field 2 – MMO Game Review
Passed Inspection: Fast-paced action. Launched with a wide variety of ships from multiple nations. The only game of its kind currently available.
Failed Basic: Terrible documentation and tutorials. Very money hungry. Unintuitive ship and crew customization.
The timing for Navy Field 2 could not be better. With the release of World of Warships months away but still eagerly anticipated, developer SDEnterNet had a tremendous opportunity to score a hit and revitalize the fanbase from their original cult hit, Navy Field. It’s too bad that their torpedo is a dud.
Navy Field 2 is a top-down arcade game where players control different WWI to WWII–era ships in massive team battles. It’s essential an MMO action game, in the vein of World of Tanks and War Thunder, but specializing in naval warfare. You start in a WWI era destroyer, and work your way up to more advanced ships, unlocking different classes—light cruisers, heavy cruisers, battleships, carriers, submarines, and even LSTs, customizing your crew and equipment loadout along the way.
The actual gameplay at its heart is fast paced and can be fun, but it is saddled with a steep, poorly documented learning curve. The interactive tutorial barely scratches the surface of movement and targeting; all the other many mechanics you have to master are found in static, text and picture tutorials. This would be fine, if they included all the necessary information. In an astounding display of sloppiness, the tutorials are poorly translated from the developers’ native Korean and half of them are cut off halfway—literally, mid-sentence. Essential information like how to make bombing runs is simply missing. Players are largely left to either puzzle out controls and mechanics on their own or look up fanmade videos on YouTube. The game has been live for over a month and went through a substantial beta period. How these problems have persisted for so long is beyond me.
The other major strike against this game is how money hungry it is. Now, Free to Play games, of course, have to make money. However, there are good and bad ways to go about incentivizing your players to spend money on premium “gold” currency. Navy Field 2 seems to stray to the dark side. Every boost you can buy—from special components to boosted planes—is temporary. You will have to spend more gold to renew them every seven days at most. The standard in most other F2P games is that, once you buy a gold item, you get to keep it. Having to constantly dig back into your wallet to buy things you’ve already spent money on is obnoxious.
It’s a shame how what would otherwise be a fun game is weighed down by so many flaws. When Navy Field 2 is good, it’s great: threading a destroyer through a battleship’s salvos to lay down a perfect spread of torpedoes is thrilling. But achieving those moments requires too much effort and confusion before you even start the battle. The bottom line is, if you’re a huge fan of WWII naval warfare and you can’t wait for World of Warships, Navy Field 2 is worth a look. After all, it’s free to get started, and maybe some of the flaws I bring up here will be addressed in time. Plus, it’s the only MMO on the market or in development that includes submarines. If you’re not wedded to the 20th century, give Naval Action, a Napoleonic-era game now in Early Access a look. Otherwise, give this clunker a pass.
Armchair General Rating: 70%
About the Author:
Matt Richardson is a freelance social media consultant and copy writer in Charlotte, North Carolina. He has a degree in History from Davidson College, with a special interest in military history and the Civil War. He has rotted his mind with video games since childhood. You can follow Matt at @MT_Richardson and read his blog at Ritalingamer.com.