It may be a huge understatement to say that there have been way too many games made for World War II. In fact, we have enough games presumably to last us for the rest of our live. One war that never gets covered is the Cold War, which in most cases really wasn’t a war with troops but instead a war of words and threats. Well now the Cold War is getting some love on the Xbox, in a game creatively called Cold War. So is this game all talk or does it have some firepower to back it up? Read our full review to find out!
I knew it would happen, but my question is how a game developer would make a game about the Cold War. Like I already said the Cold War was not necessarily fought with guns and ammunition, but with threats of nuclear war. Well in the game Cold War you end up taking the role of Matthew Carter, a fancy journalist who wants to get his big story by going to the USSR (smart move, total sarcasm). The story progresses giving you a pretty typical Cold War style feel that has been done in the theatres many times before. Cold War has a good progressive storyline that gets better as time progresses, and although it may not be the most interesting story around, it is still a lot of fun nonetheless.
The easiest way to describe the Cold War is by first stating that the developers seem to have taken quite a bit of their ideas from very successful games like Splinter Cell. You will find that a lot of the same mechanics are in place here, allowing you to move and interact with the environment in the same sort of fashion. The game continues to borrow from stealth titles, but you will find that the game doesn’t do an overly bad job of translating them into their own game. One thing about your character, Matt, is that he is not what you would call very skilled at being a spy, therefore your moves in the game are rather limited.
This game is a stealth title through and through, and unfortunately this is where the game actually encounters a lot of its problems. We have played so many great stealth titles like a Splinter Cell, that when you play Cold War you will find that the controls feel nowhere near as smooth and the gameplay just feels very thrown together. The stealth in the game just feels so bland in comparison, and there are times where the game just doesn’t seem to flow all that well.
Your character does get better as you progress through the game, gaining new skills in the process, but the game just seems to make you do the same thing over and over again, and this is a shame. Nothing in this game feels overly well done, and it’s hard to really get a grasp for what the developers were trying to accomplish with this game. In the end, the gameplay felt poorly constructed. It seemed like when they drew up the idea for Cold War they had a great idea, but when it all got created it became one jumbled mess.
At first, when I sat down to play Cold War, I have to say I was impressed with its visual, which had the "Splinter Cell" style of graphics, and seemed like it was going to end up being a great looking game. But as I gave it some more time, I saw pretty quickly that this game did not hold up for very long. There are a lot of little graphical flaws in the game that shine through pretty quick, and the lack of detail in all areas seemed to be a huge problem in my eyes.
This game was made for being a stealth title, but never once did the visuals fully allow you to get the old "stealth feel". The game wants to make it look and feel like the extremely popular Splinter Cell, but just doesn’t manage to get this accomplished. Sure the game has some nice touches with some of the weapons and such, but in the long run the visuals just don’t have any sort of impressive look or feel to them.
Cold War is a game that easily could have been a whole lot better. To me it seemed like the developers actually decided to go for too much with this game, and in the end this ended up making Cold War feel like a jumbled mess. The stealth in the game is sub-par, with poor controls and just a lack of any interesting ideas. You also never know what to expect from this game, and this to ends up making the game suffer. Did I have fun with this game? Sure, once or twice, but in the end all of the games shortcomings really made this one game I could have passed on.
Cold War took a great story idea and added some stealth gameplay elements, but obviously just didn’t know how to put the two together. Some would say that this is a poor man’s Splinter Cell, but in truth, Cold War does not deserve to be mentioned in the same sentence with Ubisoft’s great stealth title. Unless you are a die-hard stealth fan, you are definitely better off looking elsewhere to satisfy your cravings.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.