Conflict: Global Terror

The squad based shooter Conflict: Global Terror is the fourth installment in the Conflict series. The game is vastly enhanced over the previous Conflict games with new graphics, missions, weapons, and features. The missions are based on modern day Counter-Terrorism Operations spanning across the globe with different fictional terror groups. As in any global fight on terror you must put an end to tyranny and prevent terrorists from destabilizing the world. Your squad is no stranger to combat and in Conflict: Global Terror you'll battle the new terror force 'March 33' descendents from the ODESSA Nazis. Many gamers would think that this being the fourth game in the series, it might be some of the same old game play. Well Conflict: Global Terror is not the case. New improvements make this a pretty decent and enjoyable squad based shooter.

Veterans of previous Conflict games would have no problem with missions and game play. Your favorite heroes Bradley, Jones, Conners, and Foley from the previous games are back. As usual each one of the characters has a specific specialty, so you should use their specialty to your advantage. For example, Jones is a demolitions expert so equip all C4 with Jones, and Foley is an expert sniper so use him when you need a surgical stealthy hit. Your squad can carry and use an array of weapons such as the M60E3, M4A1, and the MP5SD silenced machine gun.

For any gamer that is a rookie to the Conflict series there is an excellent, and I do mean excellent, training mode that guides you through almost every situation that you will come across in combat. This feature is absent from most military shooters. One thing that I do miss from this Conflict game is the angry Drill Sergeant yelling at you throughout the training sessions. I felt the Drill Sergeant was a cool addition and it gives the game some realism. Something Pivotal Games should have left out is the music. The menu music at the beginning of the game is quite terrible. It sounds like something out of an 8-bit Nintendo game, but who purchases a military shooter for the music?

One of the amazing new additions to the physics engine is the ragdoll effect. When you kill an enemy, they die in an ultra-realistic fashion. In most military shooters after you kill the enemy, they simply fall to the ground. In Conflict: Global Terror, the enemy will actually fall and their body will fold depending on their environment, thus giving it a ragdoll effect. I must give all the credit to Pivotal Games on this one, its really cool and you'll find yourself watching enemies die and fold in a realistic manner. Similarly, your squad can Vault through windows, climb onto ledges, and use zip lines interacting more with the environment. A better graphics engine also gives Conflict: Global Terror smoother graphics, with improved animations and cut scenes.

I particularly like this approach which Pivotal games takes with the Conflict series. In Conflict: Global Terror (as in the previous Conflict series) your squad members actually run low on ammo. Some gamers might blame a poor AI implementation, but it's a dose of realism. It's not appealing to know that your team never runs out of ammo. However, in Conflict: Global Terror your squad members actually tell you they're low on ammo. This feature adds to realism and reality. It forces you and your squad members to conserve ammo and think quickly on your feet to grab enemy weapons nearby. Unlike, a majority of squad based shooting games such as SOCOM, in Conflict: Global Terror you are allowed to switch between members of your squad. Likewise, you can use medical kits to heal yourself and your squad members as well.

This aspect truly brings a real military feel to the game. Real Special Forces soldiers carry medical kits and heal themselves when wounded. So it is beyond me to understand why this aspect is left out of a majority of military shooters. Some gamers would argue that medical kits only make game play easier. I disagree because you have to conserve your medical kits not only for you but your squad members as well. Moreover, in Conflict: Global Terror the terrorists have a smarter AI, so you'll be wounded plenty. Pivotal Games deserves credit in preserving this feature throughout the Conflict series.

One of the more frustrating aspects of Conflict: Global Terror is the use of grenades. The standard M67 Fragmentation Grenade, an essential tool in any military game, is terrible in Conflict: Global Terror. The actual kill radius of a grenade here is poor, probably one of the poorest I've seen. So you basically have to throw the grenade at the enemies and once you do that, they yell "grenade" and run. Essentially, it's difficult to land a kill with the grenade. Adding insult to injury, the explosion graphic after the grenade explodes is terrible; it looks like a smoke bomb went off rather than a grenade.

Another sore spot for this game are the controls. Usually with any game a truly experienced gamer can pick up on the controls of any game within an hour. Having played previous Conflict games myself, I figured I might remember the controls, but Conflict: Global Terror was one of the few games I needed to use the user manual to look up the controls. At times the controls are a bit confusing so a tip before you play, use the training modes a lot!

Conflict: Global Terror also features a multiplayer split screen mode, where you and another player go through the missions together. Its quite fun and once again it is a feature missing from most military shooters. In addition, Conflict: Global Terror has a Fully Integrated Cooperative Online Play which, is a first for the Conflict series.

Conflict: Global Terror has some sore points like no auto save, and a terrible grenade implementation but I must say this game is quite fun. In many instances I kept telling myself, "just five more minutes." From a military aspect, it's fairly accurate, and the storyline is written well. I definitely think Conflict veterans need to grab this title, and for Conflict rookies its a game that must be sampled. I recommend this game to military enthusiasts everywhere. You'll find yourself playing more and more each time. Sure, Conflict: Global Terror is not a perfect game, but it keeps you entertained. It is worth a try and a decent addition to any military collection.

Conflict: Global Terror is rated "M" for Mature (Content suitable for ages 17 or older) and is available for the PlayStation 2 game console.