Medal of Honor: Airborne - hands-on

Unlike previous MoH games, the focus isn't entirely on you. When the rest of your team lands they'll go about their own business. Looking down on the level from a high vantage point we saw skirmishes breaking out across the level, pockets of fighting which really highlighted just how intelligent the AI is. They're calling it "affordance AI," which is a jumped-up way of describing how the enemy, rather than just hiding behind a crate until you shoot them in the ears, will genuinely fend for themselves. They'll retreat, they'll bark desperate orders at each other, they'll take formation and try to flush you out… it's like fighting a real war. Sort of.

But what we really love about Airborne is how brutal the combat is. Fighting feels like a real blood-and-guts battle to the death. The weapons are big and loud and there's chaos everywhere. We played it with a fairly hefty surround sound system and it was terrifying, like plugging your brain into an actual conflict. Going back to Call of Duty; while the combat in that was accomplished, it felt slightly limp, lacking the visceral intensity of the films that inspired it, like Saving Private Ryan. Airborne captures this perfectly, and it's so violent it might give you nightmares. The sprint button is good for dangerous rushes past gun emplacements and barging through to cover, again capturing that desperate sense of survival that's made many a war film a classic.