If you’re like me you like to game on a budget. That’s when I hit steam and start checking out what I can find that is rated decently for a good price. I want maximum enjoyment, time and replay potential for the money I spend.
That’s when I happened across a game called Easy Red 2. A PVP and Co-Op WWII themed game currently in Alpha that promises massive battles between infantry, vehicles, tanks, canons and planes all on large maps for the shockingly low price of $8. Yes. EIGHT DOLLARS!
I immediately added the game to my wish list and sat on it a few days pondering if I should get it or not. Recent and Overall reviews place the game at an amazing 87% positive (at the time of purchase). So finally I just pulled the trigger and bought the game.
My expectations were very low as I loaded up the game for the first time. I was stunned to see a very clear and easy to navigate menu, and links to the current roadmap as well as settings for keyboard and graphics alike. But the most impressive of all the menu items was the built in mission editor. I was even further impressed to see a full map editor as well.
Not a terrible start! A quick look at the developer of this game showed only a single name, Marco Amadei. Yes, this game is made by a single person and obviously Marco knows how to program (at least as far as menus go). So I could not wait another moment. I sent a gift copy of the game to Seth (my son) so we could play it together, 1V1 and see what we thought of it.
So we jumped right in.
AI!? What?! A game in 2022 with AI in it?? I exclaimed as I was able to set up a private match between ourselves. Such a smart move to add AI to a game such as this. It adds longevity to a game that would otherwise rely on other players to make it work and to keep it relevant. Everyone knows that if a game that relies on human players loses those players the game dies. Not so if you have AI opponents, that alone can keep your private and single player matches alive for years to come. It’s far too easy for lazy game developers to make a map, throw in some code for real players, forego the often time consuming and very difficult task of programming AI and release an alpha version. Marco is not lazy that is for sure. Even more excited to play now, I maxed out the number of AI in the game and started the match.
We started out the match on opposing sides. Myself on the American led team aboard a Higgins Boat and Seth as the German team. The atmosphere was immersive and gave immediate notice that a hail fire of bullets were heading our way. Some of my AI squad mates did not make it off the boat alive.
Hitting the beach, the whistle blew and the door dropped. Exposed, I ran towards the nearest cover. That’s when I was cut down from locations unknown. The only thing I did know was that Seth had not been the killer, thus sparing me from his victory howls.
Respawning as one of my remaining squad members I did eventually make it to cover and started suppression fire allowing my squad to advance the beach. Unfortunately I soon found myself alone as my squad had been eliminated by heavy fire. I carried on without them.
FOB after FOB the American forces pushed through the front and deeper into the countryside and towards what would be hopefully a victory. However, the victory was not ours this day. Loses to the American forces were vast and Germany took the win, but at a very heavy cost. The match lasted an impressive 45 minutes. The screams of victory from Seth however, will echo in my ears forever.
This is just a small taste of the havoc that awaits in this hidden gem of a game. I am completely impressed that a game of this caliber could be made by a single person and sold for a mere $8 US. His love and passion for this game to be the best, shines in every aspect of it.
However with every positive mention there must be some negatives. So to be fair I have outlined below what I believe to be areas of the game that could use improvement.
THINGS I DID NOT LIKE
Graphics could use updating. The overall look of this game does not provide graphic hungry video cards with any satisfaction. Many of the textures look flat and boring. However, I do understand that a major graphics overhaul is in the works!
Voice acting is amateurish at times. The screams of the some of the voice over artists, sound more like a teenager in his room at night trying not to be too loud so they do not wake up their parents. Some professional voice acting is in dire need here.
Net code could use some tweaking as we experienced desync at times while playing on our US East private server. I feel this was because I maxed out the AI in the game using more CPU usage than I anticipated. I would also like to see LAN added as a feature here so networked computers can play outside of the confines of the server browser and with super low ping rates.
AI improvements are indeed needed. While the current AI offers up some decent challenging play, there is room for improvement. Especially when it comes to advancing on positions from the same point every time, or shooting a tank with no cover with 7.62mm rounds with absolutely no hope of penetrating the hull just waiting to die.
I propose a bit of new code for this part
IF see TANK >=1
In conclusion Easy Red 2 is a steal at only $8. It could certainly use some more work, but as it stands, it’s a solid singleplayer and multiplayer game. Good alone, but great with friends.
8 out of 10 Beards – MUST GET