Dec 20, 2007
Developer Cauldron may have all the expertise of the History Channel backing them up, but is it any use when they clearly don't understand the evolution of their own medium? Historical accuracy notwithstanding, Battle for the Pacific stands as a laughable attempt to clone the formula of successful first-person shooters like Call of Duty.
The core problem with this game is that it betrays its own claim to realism. The History Channel moniker doesn't mean much when you're mowing down hundreds of soldiers and your squad mates are invincible. Too boring to interest an FPS fanatic and too crazy to catch the eye of history buffs, Battle for the Pacific is a bothersome lose-lose situation. The core and basic gameplay are typical first-person shooter 101. And Battle for the Pacific is completely lacking in any dramatic, Call of Duty-style set pieces. The occasional turret segment hardly breaks up the hours of demolishing waves of might-as-well-be-pop-up-target soldiers.
Battle for the Pacific does have the obligatory rudimentary online multiplayer, but it also places too much emphasis on this. The single-player is only about four or five hours long, and a huge portion of the achievements are multiplayer-only, forcing players to sink tens of hours just to unlock a few extra hundred points. Plus an online match requires six players just to begin; maybe the developers could delude themselves about how often that will happen, but we cannot. You may never get those achievements.
Another noticeable crack comes with the music. The vaguely stirring epic score that has become a cliche in war games is employed once more here but in a wildly sloppy manner. Half the time that you're fighting in the game's bland jungle environments, there's no music at all. When it does play, it blares so loudly that your ear drums will revolt.