Men of Valor – Game Review (PC)
An estimated 600 million dollars of damage was caused in North Vietnam during the Vietnam War, at a total cost to the United States of America of 6 billion dollars.
I was not aware of this fact one week ago. But then, one week ago, I hadn’t played Men of Valor before. Yes, it’s amazing what you can learn from a simple loading screen.
Men of Valor is the latest First Person Shooter (FPS) game from 2015, the Developers of the WWII FPS Medal of Honour: Allied Assault, and released by Vivendi Universal. Set during the Vietnam War, Men of Valor puts you in the role of an American Marine as you fight your way through one of the defining conflicts of the 20th century, from the early beginnings of active American involvement, and up to the Tet Offensive of 1968.
Having played a previous FPS set during the Vietnam War, I was eagerly looking forward to this release and keen to see what the creators of MOH:AA would do with a more modern war. Until a couple of years ago, the Vietnam War was a taboo topic for games developers, on the basis that it was not only a defeat for the United States, but an all too recent defeat at that, and a controversial war to start with. The subject of the Vietnam war can still touch a raw nerve or two with veterans, but the genie has well and truly been unbottled since the release of FPS games like Vietcong, Battlefield: Vietnam and the Real-Time Strategy game based on the film Platoon.
This review covers the PC version of the game, which was released simultaneously alongside the X-Box edition.
In most cases, clicking on the thumbnail pictures that follow will display a larger version of each picture.
I won’t dwell too much on how an FPS game like this works as there’s nothing particularly revolutionary here. If you’ve played one before, you can literally jump straight into playing this one without even looking at the manual (I know I did). As the term FPS implies – whilst you are onscreen you are standing in the shoes of your character, looking through his eyes, controlling his movements by use of the keyboard or joystick. By moving the mouse about you can look around you, from side to side, up or down and most importantly, aim your weapon. Your character can also crouch or lay prone – settings can be adjusted to determine whether crouching or crawling is toggled on or off or if you are required to hold down the relevant key to maintain the position. Keys for every command are totally customisable which is nice to see.
To the top left of your screen, a compass indicates the direction of your next objective. Below this at the bottom left is your health indicator (more of that later) and above this (when applicable) an indicator will show whether you are in a crouched or prone position. In the centre, a targeting reticule helps you aim. This reticule also flashes red to indicate from which direction you are being hit if someone off your screen has fired at you.
To the bottom right, the name of the weapon you are currently holding is displayed along with an ammunition count for remaining rounds in the weapon and spare rounds available.
Important messages for your mission (objectives etc.) appear as text in the upper portion of the screen and you will also occasionally see urgent red text appearing at the bottom – for example to warn you that a grenade is incoming!
In this mission, you must board the Chopper to escape the LZ.
Once aboard, you can pour fire down on the enemy VC below.
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