Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway - hands-on

Now you’ll often have two-man heavy weapon teams armed with a machinegun or bazooka to order around alongside regular assault squads. While you can heft their weapons yourself, that makes for a lonely, hernia-ridden life, so you’ll want to keep those guys safe. More fragile still is the radio operator, who you’ll be able to use to call in air strikes.

As for the game’s all-important cover, it’s now a little more temperamental. Tables or fences can be shredded by bullets, and rockets will blow apart sandbags. Finally, if you’re only interested in saving your own hide, you can look forward to being able to go prone, and the new player cover system lets you press yourself against stuff like a pervert.

But what’s really nice is the way Hell’s Highway deals with health. A single bullet is all it takes to put you out of action, but you’ll know the bullet’s coming because the more exposed you are the more red and narrow your vision becomes. As well as making you keep your head down, we felt this brought us closer to our men.

So: lots of small advances rather than a sweeping revolution. But that’s hardly a worry when you’re dealing with as solid a series as this. If Gearbox put out a Brothers in Arms game after this without some major changes we might start raising eyebrows, but for now, third time’s the charm.

March 14, 2008