The value of playtesting really cannot be understated. The 360 has been privy to some lustrously polished titles of late, with gems like Forza 2 and The Darkness brightening up this miserable excuse for a summer. And with each, you have to admire the poor bastards that played through the same sections day in, day out to make sure that everything worked as it should and that nothing was glaringly wrong. With that in mind, you have to wonder whether the quality assurance guys on Hour Of Victory were ignored to rush the game onto shelves or whether they somehow overlooked the constant barrage of blunders that make up this total shambles. Either way, somebody needed to stand up and say something because, in this bedraggled state, Hour Of Victory is frankly unfit for public consumption and a complete waste of everyone's time and money.
But before the inevitable shoeing starts, here's a little on the concept itself. nFusion's 'big idea' to make its mark on the WWII shooter genre is to offer three different character to take into the fray. Your covert ops chap can cut through fences and pick locks to sneak through levels and perform stealth kills with throwing knives, the sniper offers better mobility and the opportunity to scale ropes to reach higher ground (even if his 'improved accuracy' does make aiming painfully sluggish) and the SAS beefcake is all you'll need for the latter stages of the game, able to take a little more punishment and move infrequent heavy obstacles.
Each of these unique actions comes replete with its own cut scene, with some more annoying than others. Find a glowing rope, for example, and Bull will chuck his own grappling hook up in exactly the same spot rather than use the existing means. Landing a stealth kill, meanwhile, is seemingly a matter of chance - even when directly behind an unsuspecting foe. On the plus side, most of these animations render you immune to bullets, so you can make a run for a locked door or stray rope and hope to find yourself safe when the short sequence finishes.