Greg Hastings’ Paintball 2 Review


Game: Greg Hastings’ Paintball 2
Genre: FPS
Consoles: PS3 (Reviewed), Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii
Price: $19.99 on PSN.  Buy here (USA: $19.99/PAL: $44.90) for retail versions
Developer/Publisher: Super X Studios /Majesco

Greg Hastings’ Paintball 2 has already released on on other console systems. However, Majesco promised that the game would come to the Playstation 3 and now, finally, it has. Furthermore, the developers have expanded the game with Playstation Move controls and new game types. Is the game improved by such additions? It it able to accurately convey the and simulate the adrenaline that is present when playing paintball on the actual field? Which version of the game is the best?

Most of the game revolves around the campaign mode.  Here, you will be able to participate in a franchise like experience and build your team while unlocking new stuff and playing against progressively harder AI in different challenges.  For starters, you’ll play in a standard death match game type.  During gameplay, you can order your team to attack from the left, right and middle areas, depending on where you think the enemy AI is the weakest.  Eventually, the game types become more diverse, transitioning between a variety of different scoring goals and the like.  For example, nearly every type of game mode, from Speedball to Woodsball is represented.

After you play a while, the customization opportunities are expanded.  You can customize each team mate that you have recruited from the different leagues in paintball.  Once your done customizing your squads to the finest details, then you can focus on yourself.  Grab new markers, weapons and  accessories to truly create a one of a kind, paint splattering machine.

The customization has also expanded to the fields.  In this game, you can create your own bizarre courses, much like Forge in Halo: Reach.  There are plenty of options to try out and the interface has been simplified greatly from the previous game in the series.  From zany to standard and strategic to off the wall, there is plenty to do in this game play space.

What it really all comes down to though is the gun play.  If your tired of the same old shooting guys in the face to watch their head’s explode, but you still want some gun toting action, then this game may be for you.  The paintball mechanics shift the first person shooter formula enough to make the experience very enjoyable.  For example, when behind cover, you can slide out, or you can switch your marker holding hand to get the strategic advantage.  Aiming was not quite as tight as I would have liked, but all in all, that is representative of actual paintball, so I can’t fault it too much. New weather effects like rain and fog make the game a lot more fun to play and new weapons like rocket launchers are also a blast!

The other area that this game is different from standard FPS is that the paint balls are affected by wind and gravity, making it that much more challenging  and exciting to score.  Rapid fire is also handled in a different way. You’ll need to hold the R1 button in as well as shoot with R2 to make the markers spit faster.  Finally, the game introduces a new mechanic of cheating.  Unlike a regular FPS, this game allows you to “cheat death” by wiping a hit off your clothes.  If your fast, you won’t get caught and you will live to fight another minute.  Get caught though, and your team suffers a penalty.

There are some faults with the game though.  For starters, the AI is sketchy, varying from really good to god awful.  Several times, I literally ran past the entire opposing team’s faces to score in CTF matches.  The graphics are also some of the worst I have seen on this console generation.  Dull textures fail to bring the scenery to life and it felt like I was playing in a factory instead of a vibrant world.  Unfortunately,  the Move controls also fail to bring anything exciting to the table.  They work ok at best and I found much better success and accuracy using the controller.  The control system was much more complicated using the Move and all in all, the pizazz of using it was not present.
When I was playing, I personally found the online community to be on the sparse side, but your mileage may vary.  Local split screen is a great feature to have though, and the bot support was also a nice feature.  Hopefully, more peeps will start playing this game online, as it does offer a lot of unique qualities when compared to other games in the genre.

One feature that I really liked was the incorporation of paintball culture.  Quite a few pictures of real world teams were able to be viewed, as well a their team history and how they came to be.  A lot of interesting facts about paintball were also presented in an appealing manner.  Furthermore,  there were video reviews of different markers and there were a few videos of famous matches that have been played in recent years.
In conclusion, paintball fanatics will find that this game meets their every need.  Gamers who are turned off the recent FPS onslaught may also find some genre redeeming qualities in this game.  Younger players who are forbidden from the more adult FPS games of today may also enjoy the less violent nature of this game.  I do enjoy playing the actual game more, but at least when playing the video game, there are no welts afterwards. All in all, it is a very quality game and it can only get better in GHP3. Hopefully, they can continue to expand.  For example, I would personally love to see a story mode.  For now though, this game offers a plethora of value for $20.00.

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