kirkdouglas's Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (PC) review

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Thrilling multiplayer with comparatively awful single player

The Battlefield games have always been about offering a solid team-based multiplayer experience. This game takes that formula and builds upon it, putting you in a squad of four on two teams of 16 (I play it on PC, your version may differ). Add to it weapons that can be customised and an objective mode (Rush), as well as the standard Battlefield mode, Conquest and it is a solid formula for fun. In addition, there is a deathmatch mode that no one plays and there are few servers up to even try it.  
 
Graphically speaking, the game is quite good. However, your mileage may vary depending on how powerful your computer is. I run on high, but mind you, I can only run in 1280x1024 because that is my monitor's max resolution. This is fine for the most part and allows me to crank up settings such as Anti-Aliasing, which console versions do not have.  
 
The PC version is just fine to play, as long as you don't want to fly a helicopter. Operating a helicopter with mouse and keyboard has been nigh on impossible for myself to master (again, you may be better than I or own a joystick/gamepad). Other vehicles, such as tanks and APC's are fine to operate via mouse and keyboard.  
 
In addition to the base game, I have purchased the DLC addon, Vietnam. This is also a solid experience, although some of the weapons are re-skins of base game weapons and have incorrect animations. If I was a wiki editor for the Internet Movie Firearms Database, I would probably be more upset about this. One gun in particular, the PPSH, has a puny 25 Round clip, when the drum it is outfitted with should hold 75 rounds. Bizarrely enough, tanks in Vietnam are frequently able to shoot down the UH-1, the only helicopter for each side. The fact that the NVA and the Americans both use the same helicopter takes away from the experience because it is both inaccurate and humorous.  
 
Something I miss from playing the previous games are dedicated weapons for each side. What I mean is that one team does not have access to the complete set of weapons from the other side. For example, the Japanese could not have the M1 and instead had the Type-5 rifle in BF1942. This is a small quibble, but adds to realism, especially in Vietnam, where few Charlie would likely run around with an M16.  
  
Overall, I would definitely recommend this game as a purchase, if only for the multiplayer. The single player experience is convoluted and unbelievable. The story wasn't worth following and I'll be honest and say that I only got half way. If you're going to buy this game, don't play the single player and play the multiplayer, the actually good component of the game.  
 
Full disclosure: I bought both the base game and Vietnam on Steam. I bought the base game for $6.80 during the 2010 Holiday Sale and Vietnam for $7.50 a few months later. My review does not reflect this value, but if you can find them this cheap, do it. 

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