Rising Sun due on November 28th

And we finally get our hands on some playable code.

Medal of Honor: Rising Sun for PS2, Xbox and GameCube is still due out on November 28th, according to EA. Apparently the December 5th date previously printed (found on EA's press extranet) was innaccurate.

Yesterday we finally got our hands on a playable copy of the PS2 version, but it provides a poor snapshot of the game, with a lot of significant features broken or poorly implemented in this build (For example, it's possible to connect to PS2 Online with Rising Sun, but you can't see server listings, menus are all placeholders, and the multiplayer maps are apparently untextured.)

However it's clear that this is shaping up to be more of an Allied Assault or Frontline than a Breakthrough or, heaven forbid, Spearhead. The Pearl Harbour level in particular is as memorable and intricately constructed as it appeared at E3, starting with the race from your bunk to the deck, extinguishing fires in vain and dashing past the bodies of sailors crushed by the crumbling superstructure, and the subsequent anti-aircraft battle topside (as long as you can avoid being hit by a Kamikaze pilot) both on the deck and on-rails in a smaller motorboat (dodging destroyers as they topple into the waves, and firing on countless Japanese fighters).

Our Rising Sun code also reveals a greater emphasis on the player character. Although he's still somewhat muted, he is the focus of between-level cut sequences (Rising Sun's historical movies and veteran reports weren't in place yet, incidentally), which flesh out his story and finally give the player some motivation besides killing Jerry (or, in this case, the Japanese).

Although we can't get past the third level due to a crash bug just after a mid-level save point (the game locks up quite often, but in this, a raid on the Guadalcanal, it's impossible to continue past a certain point), so far we're impressed by the diverse mission settings (Harbour attack, tank-driven urban ruckus, jungle assault), punctuated by the sort of scripted sequences that made Allied Assault and Frontline stand out from the crowd, and we're keen to get our hands on a more complete copy of the game, where motorcycles don't hover three feet off the ground and vanish into walls as they chase your truck, and enemies don't fiercely confront walls and climb on each other's heads.

We're also looking forward to giving the PS2 Online sections and co-operative multiplayer a good going over. And when we do, we'll bring you some more considered impressions.

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Tom Bramwell

Tom Bramwell

Contributor  |  tombramwell

Tom worked at Eurogamer from early 2000 to late 2014, including seven years as Editor-in-Chief.

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