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Arma II Review

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Lizard 26th June 2009, 16:40 Quote
Just a quick update - BIS has just released a new patch :)

http://forums.bistudio.com/showthread.php?t=75075
Carbon_Arc 26th June 2009, 17:23 Quote
I spent the whole of yesterday evening playing multiplayer with a friend of mine, this game is genius!

One of the highlights was setting up a custom mission where we raced buses around the airfield. The sandbox nature of the game has endless possibilities for creating some really immersive missions.

Looking at the system resources this game is running 75% full time on my quad core Q6600, so i guess there is a boost with quad over dual core. But otherwise it's running nicely at 1680x1050 on a 8800GT.

It's refreshing to play a true PC game that doesn't suffer from consolification.
Lepermessiah 26th June 2009, 18:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogie170
Most frustrating p.o.s. I ever played.

Bug ridden throughout. I couldn't even complete the training levels due to the amount of bugs. Needs another year of development to make it playable.

The controls are the worst thing ever, you would of think that they would have learned from their previous releases that they needed overhauling.

Also squad management needs to be overhauled to a decent gui like bf2.

Far too many buttons to do anything. By the time you press escape find the right button you are dead.

Wait for Operation Flashpoint 2.

Operation Flashpoint? ROFL, hilarious, this is a hardcore military sim, not a game masquerading as one, you should have researched what the game was before sounding like a douche. BF2 and OFP are not even in the same boat or trying to do the same thing as this game.
cybergenics 27th June 2009, 02:25 Quote
It uses Fade DRM like the original Operation Flashpoint. You can however install it as many times as you like on your machine...and sometimes you need to, its a trifle buggy, to say the least.

On the BIS forums there are two pretty hot topics raging across several posts. The first is the fact it won't run on many peoples 4850's (mine included) without bugs glithces, black cubes, stripes, you name it. The other is that fact that if you use the Nvidia driver for Vista, after 182.50, a big (not sure if its the game or in the driver) will always see your video card as 256mb VRAM which severely hampers the performance.

I was using the 186.18 after purchasing am Nvidia card having given up on the 4850/Arma 2 debacle and after looking through posts on the BIS forums searching for an answer to my 18fps on a GTX285 it seems that a cursory look at arma2.cfg in my documents revealed the 'local vram' setting was 256mb when it should be 1GB. I tried to manually adjust it and set it as read only to no avail and only several hour more reading came across the need to go back to 182.50 drivers.

Once I had deleted arma2.cfg and re-run the game, with the older drivers, I went back into the cfg file to see 'local vram' was now 1gb (except its a 10 digit number they are using).

Seems also to be an issue with 8GB of ram like the original Arma. Anyone experiencing issues or interested in purchasing the game should spend time reading through the forums and be very patient. However once I sorted my installation out, its been very enjoyable.

Patch 1.02 can be very reluctant to install too. From a fresh install the way I got it to install was to load the game without patches, play the campaign till it offered a save point and then come out. Then patch to 1.02. Otherwise it just comes up with errors at random point on installation of the patch (also lots of threads about this on the BIS forums). Believe it or not I had to install and reinstall the game 9 times before I came across the way to be able to patch it by accident and its not a co-incidence as it worked on a friends copy too with the same problem.
Hamish 27th June 2009, 02:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by cybergenics

Seems also to be an issue with 8GB of ram like the original Arma. Anyone experiencing issues or interested in purchasing the game should spend time reading through the forums and be very patient. However once I sorted my installation out, its been very enjoyable.
what bug is that? im running with 8gig ram and haven't noticed anything aside from a couple of times the game has crawled/paused for about 15s and then kept going fine

aside from that and a bug during the chopper training (pilot jumped out and started walking to the waypoint and i couldnt get in the chopper :) ) i've not had any issues at all, no crashes no obvious bugs, nothing :)
cybergenics 27th June 2009, 10:10 Quote
I also have 8GB ram but not had problems, like most bugs it only effects a percentage. There is a long thread about it on BIS forums.
Hovis 27th June 2009, 14:20 Quote
Regarding performance I think it must be an operating system thing because I've found the frame rate, given the quality of the graphics and the scale of them, to be spectacularly high. I'd been expecting my PC to curl up and die trying to play ArmA2 but in my view it outperforms the original Armed Assault and does so while looking much better to boot. I've heard similar reports from other folks I've played the game with too.

I'm not sure about the issue of bugs, but then I haven't played much of the single player campaign. I hear that's a bit buggy, but playing homebrewed missions with a team I have seen two crashes, one of which I caused with something I did in the mission build and the other one I chalk up to alt-tabbing when it was loading. I wouldn't be surprised if the bugs in the campaign are of the first type, i.e. mission build gone wonky, rather than the game itself. Frankly I've found the game to be rock solid in the reliability stakes.

I'm willing to concede though that the lack of crashes, good performance and apparent lack of bugs could be due to sheer dumb luck, I enjoyed a similarly hassle free time playing Empire: Total War too while everybody else was gnashing their teeth at lock-ups and crash-to-desktops.

By the way, regarding the legendary unforgiving nature of Arma you can build missions to have a more Gears of War style health model (i.e. you get shot and go to ground bleeding and screaming, but can be revived if helped promptly). There are things called Modules in the mission builder, and you need to use two of them, First Aid Simulation and Battlefield Clearance. Place both of these on the map (anywhere is fine) and use the synchronisation button to connect them both to the group leader of the group you wish to have these medical benefits. I use this if I am building a particularly heroic co-op mission (you can't beat the epicness of picking up and carrying a friend out of the line of fire while shooting one handed, given the ruthlessness of the game those moments of heroics are so much more awesome).
DragunovHUN 27th June 2009, 14:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogie170

Bug ridden throughout. I couldn't even complete the training levels due to the amount of bugs. Needs another year of development to make it playable.

Haven't seen any problems there myself, are you sure you didn't do something to trigger FADE?
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogie170

The controls are the worst thing ever, you would of think that they would have learned from their previous releases that they needed overhauling.
Didn't have problems with the controls either.

Also squad management needs to be overhauled to a decent gui like bf2.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogie170

Far too many buttons to do anything. By the time you press escape find the right button you are dead.
PEBCAK
Quote:
Originally Posted by bogie170

Wait for Operation Flashpoint 2.
OFP2 has nothing to do with Bohemia Interactive or OFP1.

All in all, i don't think this is a game for you. Go back to Battlefield.
keir 27th June 2009, 15:08 Quote
Cant put my finger on this, tried the demo and just didn't like it.

It ran very smooth, but just didn't like the game play for some reason.
Hovis 27th June 2009, 17:22 Quote
@Keir I can understand how a person might not gel with the gameplay right away, Arma is a very different animal to a lot of games. It compares to regular FPS games in the same way that something like Flight Sim X compares to HAWX, that is to say you're effectively doing the exact same thing, even using many of the same controls, but there's just something different about it. There's not to say, "OMG your opinion is WRONGZORZ!" but I think if you give it time it might grow on you. It's not for everybody though.

Something I am looking forward to though is having a front seat when a British army based clan (which I play for alongside some serving and former soldiers) goes up against our opposite number in the US (a clan based around USMC doctrine containing several current and former Marines). Unlike most clan games that are a test of who can get the most headshots this is shaping up to be a test of doctrines, will British fire control and discipline triumph over the heavier firepower and the deadly designated marksmen of the Corps? :D
Ending Credits 27th June 2009, 21:48 Quote
Quote:
Something I am looking forward to though is having a front seat when a British army based clan (which I play for alongside some serving and former soldiers) goes up against our opposite number in the US (a clan based around USMC doctrine containing several current and former Marines). Unlike most clan games that are a test of who can get the most headshots this is shaping up to be a test of doctrines, will British fire control and discipline triumph over the heavier firepower and the deadly designated marksmen of the Corps?

I'd love to watch that on QuadV or something
Veles 28th June 2009, 11:42 Quote
Is it just me or does the guy in the front page picture look like he's doing a force choke?
Dreaming 29th June 2009, 01:30 Quote
even though I am a big fan of the series, and was involved in the modding community with OFP, Arma was a let down for me and Arma 2 having played the demo is kind of the same. I mean, I'm judging it the wrong standards really, but despite everyone shouting at bogie who says the controls are crap and the GUI is crap saying "its a milsim! serious business!" it is sold as a game. The controls and GUI are pretty much exactly the same as they were in Operation Flashpoint, and they were bad then. This is several years later. I mean, it's not asking for a lot to make the cars driveable, whereas here you actually need to hold the left / right arrow button down while it turns the wheel.

I think if they had left the graphics the same as operation flashpoint, but made the game smoother, it would be much better for it. Imagine if you had the same ease of movement around your environment as call of duty games. See an obstacle, climb over it, not just simply teleport you forward with a stepping over animation (you can step through buildings as well, noice). It's great for all the realism in the world, but we don't have a realistic input device, we have a mouse, and a keyboard. It's up to the devs to try and cross that boundary and they haven't really revisited it at all from the original game where even then it was one of the big weakpoints.

Then again, operation flashpoint was a great game. And Arma an Arma II are improvements upon that, they've not made anything worse as such. Just in my completely honest opinion, have overlooked how the end user interacts with the game or milsim if you want to call it that, which does let the game down. I too will be waiting to see what operation flashpoint 2 is like. Also really agree that as Arma and Operation Flashpoints, bugs are aplenty, but the game really is not the campaign but the builder. Consider that VBS2 doesn't come with a campaign at all, that is clearly the direction this is aimed at.
von_stylon 29th June 2009, 11:10 Quote
Hey guys head over to our server .:iGi:. ARMA 2 Public, we run the domination missions which imho are the best. For those in the know we will be running the ACE mod when it arrives, which made the first ARMA amazing. Also we are recruiting mature experianced players to join our ranks. Most of the team are ex mil or serving so come over to the site and say hello: http://www.imgoingin.co.uk
Teq 6th July 2009, 09:45 Quote
OFP and ArmA were both buggy as hell on first release, fortunately the developers are good enough to support the game until its death, so don't judge it to soon. The campaign editor is awesome as well, a few troops against an enemy with awesome weaponry - in the dead of night, absolutely fantastic! I haven't purchased it yet, still haven't decided to Steam it or buy a physical copy, I do prefer Steam but I could do with saving 5 quid ;)
Rapp 8th July 2009, 01:39 Quote
looks very cool will have to try out the demo
ssj12 17th July 2009, 05:18 Quote
I couldnt get this game to run well on my rig. Athlon X2 7750BE, 9600GT, 3GBs Ram, W7RC1
Spaceraver 18th July 2009, 12:40 Quote
I'm buying it just to have it... Can't play at the moment though.. Nothing I have can play it anyways. but for the support alone, because I want to see more of these games..
cybergenics 7th August 2009, 18:12 Quote
Patch 1.03 is out, which addresses a few issues.
Rogan 12th August 2009, 07:44 Quote
GUI / Squad Control / Radio Chatter are still a complete mess.

In fact the radio chatter is even worse "Man, left, far", you what now? You're standing in a forest and the squad leader says "2, GO TO, that, TREE, 100 meters". Yeah well done Bohemia.

And don't get me started on the pilot/driver AI and command system.

For the ARMA3 review, can someone give these things some proper scathing criticism so they actually get fixed for ARMA4 or whatever? IT's been 8 years since OFP was released and the basics of the SP campaign system STILL SUCK.
DragunovHUN 12th August 2009, 12:59 Quote
Just how are they supposed to fix that without sacrificing the level of unscriptedness unique to their games, mate?
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