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OverviewJoint Operations: Typhoon Rising is a class-based tactical and strategic multiplayer shooter and a successor to NovaLogic's Delta Force line of games. In Joint Operations NovaLogic decided to focus on bringing massive multiplayer battles on expansive maps, a natural progression of the larger player limits available in multiplayer of Delta Force: Land Warrior, which could support 64 players in an era of dial-up Internet connections. Joint Operations lacks a single-player storyline mode, the only available single-player content being training missions.
Maps are for the most part unlimited in size; the engine uses a single section of terrain which was then tesselated. Typically the area intended for play is well covered with tropical foliage, something NovaLogic referred to as "superfoliation," as well as structures and control points. The polycount for individual objects is noticeably low, but due to the vast expanses and view distance of up to slightly more than a kilometer, the total polycount is rather high. The game has a full day-night cycle integrated, which can turn a brightly lit jungle forest into a dark and foreboding stand of shadows if the game goes on long enough.
GameplayThe game contains a number of game modes, the most popular being Advance and Secure, as well as Team Deathmatch, Team King of the Hill, and Cooperative. Players can choose from a number of classes: Rifleman, Gunner, Sniper, Engineer, or Medic, each with their own specialty. Servers officially leased from NovaLogic can support up to 150 players (75 per team) at once, much larger than the common 32 and 64 player limits of other games.
Players can choose a loadout of a primary weapon, secondary weapon, grenades, and accessory. Joint Operations forces weapons are all modern infantry weapons such as the M4 or SR25, whereas the Rebels may select from a number of Warsaw Pact weapons such as the AK-47 or SVD. Some weapons such as the MP5 and L115A1 are shared by both teams, mainly for balance reasons. Player loadouts are rated through 3 weight classes, Light, Medium, or Heavy, depending on the weapons chosen and the amount of ammunition carried. These weights affect the movement speed, with Light class players being noticeably faster than more heavily loaded counterparts. A person may choose to expend ammunition in the middle of conflict to shed weight, positively affecting their movement speed. Players take heavy damage from weapons as the game is intended to be realistic; a few rounds to the chest by an assault rifle and a player will be critically injured.
Vehicles are included, from light troop transports like the Humvee to heavier vehicles such as the Stryker. Helicopters are also included, mainly troop transports such as the Blackhawk as well as lighter minigun- and rocket-equipped Little Birds. Vehicle transport helicopters are sometimes seen as well. Vehicles have seats but the capacity is typically limited to how many people can fit themselves inside; a Chinook has a half-dozen seats but it may be able to carry as many as 50 players. Vehicle control schemes are highly simplified; for example, helicopters cannot be flipped, simply moving forwards, backwards, left, right, up, down, and rotating.
Physics in the game are somewhat flaky and glitches with the physics system can sometimes cause issues with vehicle driving, sometimes giving one the ability to fit a 10-foot-wide APC through a 4-foot gap between trees. Vehicle flips are also somewhat unpredictable, and flipping any vehicle including lighter ones such as the ATV is unrecoverable as well as dangerous; a flipped vehicle will explode soon afterwards.
Advance and Secure (AAS)This mode is similar to the Battlefield series' Conquest mode, but rather than an array of otherwise unrelated flags, this mode used a system it called "Linear Focal Points" (LFP), similar to Onslaught in Unreal Tournament 2004. The map designer set links between LFPs, requiring them to be captured in the specified sequence. For example, the designer could place 5 bases, Alpha at the start, Bravo, Charlie, and Delta spread across the middle, and Echo on the other side, and require one team to capture Bravo, Charlie, and Delta before allowing the final control point Alpha or Echo to be captured. Fully captured LFPs can be used as spawn points, but partially captured LFPs are all that is required to proceed and capture the next one. While the system works to focus the battle in one place, maintaining something more or less resembling a front line, it also often leads to stalemates as each team battles over the same control point, lacking enough momentum to overcome the defense of the other team.
Team Deathmatch (TDM)This mode is the typical first-person shooter battle of attrition. Due to the number of players, the kill limit is typically many hundreds. Progressive Spawn Points (PSP) are more important here, as they allow a team to spawn closer to the action.
Team King of the Hill (TKOTH)A typical King of the Hill game, with two teams battling for control of a single area on a map. Once a team has the control area, they must defend it lest the enemy team flush them out and capture it for themselves. The goal is to maintain your team's grasp on the control point for a set amount of time, which fluctuates based on who is holding the control point at that time.
Cooperative (COOP)Scripted objective-based maps where completion of the final objective within the time limit is the goal. Players play as Joint Operations forces, and need to destroy enemy resources, eradicate the rebels, and capture objectives in this mode. NovaLogic's chronically poor AI can cause issues in this mode as they play the enemy forces, sometimes shooting at you before you are even visible, or running into walls as they try to reach their objective.
RiflemanThe primary anti-infantry class, riflemen carry an assault rifle or submachine gun, a stash of numerous grenades, and can bring along demolitions satchels or a target designator.
GunnerWhile not the most accurate man on the battlefield, the gunner is useful for mowing down large groups of enemies in the open or pinning enemies down with suppressing fire with his machine gun. Gunners also get a shotgun as an option for a secondary weapon, as well as smoke and fragmentation grenades.
SniperThe spotter and long-range anti-infantry class, the sniper can pick off targets at great distances with his sniper or designated marksman's rifle. The sniper can also carry a pair of claymores as self-defense against those who might sneak up behind him, or a target designator to point engineers in the best direction for mortar fire.
EngineerThe best option for removing vehicles from the field of battle or raining mortars on an entrenched enemy. While he may be limited to lighter primary weapons, he is the only class that can carry rockets and missiles as well as mortars.
MedicDead teammates are useless, and this is where the medic comes in. The medic may be limited to lighter primary weapons but using his medkit he can heal and even resuscitate critically injured teammates.