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With the multitude of World War II first person shooter titles available, originality is the defining factor in the success of new additions to this crowded field. Hour of Victory attempts to be original in an original way: rather than focusing on any specific historical event, this new game from Midway emphasizes the realism of combat. Weapons, vehicles (“if you see it, you can drive it”), and locations in the European and North African theaters are realized with precise historical accuracy. The powerful Unreal Engine 3.0 makes for fast paced action and a fully destructible environment.

The somewhat perfunctory premise of the game—stopping the German atomic weapons program—is really just a vehicle for combat action. Before each mission, you are given the option to play as one of three elite Allied soldiers. U.S. Army Ranger Sgt. Calvin Blackbull is a talented sniper who can climb and jump to different areas for good positions to take out enemies from a distance. Sgt. William Ross is a British SAS commando who uses his brute strength and fierce combat skills to move heavy objects and engage in frontal assaults under heavy fire. OSS operative Lt. Ambrose Taggert is a master of stealth and espionage who can sneak up on enemy soldiers and take them out with his silenced Sten gun.

The only drawback is that you are rarely told what sort of situations you’ll encounter before each mission—which makes choosing your character a hit-and-miss decision.


Originally published in the October 2007 issue of World War II Magazine. To subscribe, click here.