Saturday, October 4, 2008 | 11:28 PM

The First 10 Minutes: BiA: HH

The First 10 Minutes: BiA: HH

Ubisoft released Gearbox' Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway last week on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360, while the PC version will hit the stores next week. Here are the first 10 Minutes of the game, actually more than that since the intro is really long. Some of this is in the newly released Playstation 3 demo, but since it's not sure when the Xbox 360 version comes up I decided to just capture this part for now.



We got the game really late so I haven't really been able to play it much, but so far I've been pleasantly surprised with it. The graphics aren't that bad and some things actually look pretty good, specially the ground - a part a lot of game developers seems to ignore. I've always been a fan of the series and this is very much like the previous games, so I really can't complain on the gameplay. As you will see in the video when I enter the house, the enemy sometimes simply stands still in the open just waiting to be shot. Close combat, specially in buildings, doesn't work well with the AI.


So the AI isn't exactly groundbreaking , and the Unreal Engine 3 slow texture loading is as usual fully visible in the cut-scenes. The much hyped "emotions" the characters show leave a lot to be desired, something we could see in the previous trailers - they just doesn't seem to be alive enough to show the tears, hopelessness that the developers seem to aim at.


As usual you guys are free to write your impressions in the comments below, and if you haven't played the game yet, enjoy these videos below.

The First 10 Minutes: Intro
The First 10 Minutes: Part 2

All comments

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Commented on 2008-10-05 01:30:51
Despite the really, really obvious technical difficulties, I really have to admire the ambition. Sure, the script is a little stilted, the camera direction's going for Scorcese but is hamstrung by bad pacing and the delivery is hampered by robotic faces, but it's admirable in the sense that it's very close to achieving its goal. And yet it's also frustrating that it's not quite attained it.

It actually made me think of Ace Combat 6, which stunningly had better cutscenes with very crisp graphics and nice character models - and that's a game which didn't really need character models for the gameplay. Again, that had some real nasty scripted moments, but it really tried to deepen the core gameplay experience by making you feel you were making a difference, whilst trying to (mawkishly, maybe) actually say something about how war affects people on all sides.

It's a shame UE3's texture loading difficulties and some nasty tearing and slowdown affect it so much, but you know - sometimes I really feel developers are almost trying too hard. Too many effects when they're actually losing out by layering too much. It'd be better to tone them down and up the performance rather than make the story suffer by obvious technical faults.

That said it's a reasonable looker and the fact that the locations are real and mapped out so closely... despite the problems, I may end up eventually picking this up.

(oh and it's "leave a lot to be desired") ;)
Commented on 2008-10-05 01:35:00
Poor AI...Poor density.....
Commented on 2008-10-05 02:09:02
Almost completed it. It's a great game in terms of gameplay and graphics.
Each level is fairly long and really varied. Also you feel like you are in a wide open environment, a feeling that was not really apparent in a game like COD4

The story is bad though. I almost completed the game and can barely follow the story, nor am I attached to any character. It's just drama for the sake of drama...
Commented on 2008-10-05 02:36:20
Manager-dude.. How is the multiplayer? Is it as laggy as it was for me with the 360 version? (practically unplayable with enemies running into walls and teleporting away, it felt alot like the good old pc internet days with a 28.8k modem)
Or does the ps3 version somehow have a better netcode? Thanks.
Commented on 2008-10-05 08:05:45
Although it has some issues (AI + limited terrain), it really is a great game. Looking forward to the sequel !
Commented on 2008-10-05 08:22:54
Its not that bad of a game. Some issues as stated above, but over all a good experience.
Commented on 2008-10-05 13:36:42
I really enjoyed it even though it had a few problems was just a shame it was over so quick! Can't wait for the next one were hopefully they sort put the texture loading (only Epic have no texture loading problems with unreal engine! LOL) and sort out the animations and facial expressions! Because they were pretty bad! Worth the wait though but I have all the BiA games so I'm a bit of a fan. :)
Commented on 2008-10-05 13:42:44
This game would be good, if not for the horrible texture loading.

(joking guys; I've not played this game)
Commented on 2008-10-05 14:27:26

As you will see in the video when I enter the house, the enemy sometimes simply stands still in the open just waiting to be shot. Close combat, specially in buildings, doesn't work well with the AI.
Shows that all the multi-core and Cell processors in the world are useless if you don't have programmers that can write good AI for a game..

and the Unreal Engine 3 slow texture loading is as usual fully visible in the cut-scenes.
Yup, that is pretty dumb aswell, especially on a PC which has plenty of RAM to load everything in it's memory before you go into the game or cutscene.. But I guess you can only blame Epic for that, I think they put it in to deal with the limited memory of the consoles and keep loadingtimes down.. I wonder if UE 3.5 will still have that "feature" (It probably will)..

BIA:HH still looks cool and has my interest though, especially because it plays in my own country.. I'll check it out on PC when it's released..
Commented on 2008-10-05 14:49:57
It is a really good game. The story is a little difficult to follow, but is actually really great and cinematic. The graphics are sometimes great, but sometimes there is a little lack of detail. The gameplay is much better than the previous BIA's because of the cover system, healthsystem, and destructable cover.
I have played it both on PS3 and 360, and the framerate in the cutscenes was much better on 360.
Commented on 2008-10-05 15:23:14
I don't believe a fucking word of that.
sorry :)
Commented on 2008-10-05 15:23:26
Bakers actually 23yrs old, thats what war does to you.. gives you Dawson creek syndrome
Commented on 2008-10-05 16:43:47 In reply to PlumbDrumb
Posted by PlumbDrumb
I don't believe a fucking word of that.
sorry :)
About the framerate? It is true. I have both systems, so I'm not a fanboy at all.
Commented on 2008-10-05 16:49:03
no no, sorry.
Just realised I'm wrong about everything.

I'ts hard to accept this game may not be the stuff, I've been waiting for it to come.
Commented on 2008-10-05 17:04:18
Finished the game is less than 9 hours AI was poor and it it got boring online is poor as hell but the story mode was good..
Commented on 2008-10-05 17:36:04
Is it just me or does this look worse than the ps3 demo? I don't know, I think its the colors
Commented on 2008-10-05 17:47:41 In reply to extraextra
Posted by extraextra
Is it just me or does this look worse than the ps3 demo? I don't know, I think its the colors
Graphically, there is no difference between PS3 an 360.
Commented on 2008-10-05 21:15:34 In reply to droezelke
Posted by droezelke
Graphically, there is no difference between PS3 an 360.
Is the 360's framerate only better in cut scenes or during gameplay aswell?
Commented on 2008-10-05 22:00:31 In reply to licenturion
Posted by licenturion
Almost completed it. It's a great game in terms of gameplay and graphics.
Each level is fairly long and really varied. Also you feel like you are in a wide open environment, a feeling that was not really apparent in a game like COD4

The story is bad though. I almost completed the game and can barely follow the story, nor am I attached to any character. It's just drama for the sake of drama...
varied? each level is just the same old stuff. a pool of 3-4 enemies, surpress them, flank them, kill them. and on to the next 4 groups of enemies. and once in a while you can ride a tank or go solo. that's it. graphics are pretty good but not outstanding good.

it's a pretty average game and everything which the game has as it's "features", we have already seen in the past. So in my point of view, this game has failed to impress and deliver something new.
Commented on 2008-10-05 22:01:03
I thought the demo was pretty boring, to me it didn't feel like there was enough action. Hopefully the full game delivers more.
Commented on 2008-10-06 00:19:12
I played through the demo and was unimpressed. It's not a bad game to play, just average, but visually it's really sub-par. It has an overly colourful cartoony look, which is pretty gaudy at times, the lip syncing and animation in general is absolutely terrible, the environments are simplistic and flat, and the frame rate is all over the place.

With all the amazing games due out soon this is going to get lost, and it will be no great loss.
Commented on 2008-10-06 02:56:47 In reply to Trebby
Posted by TrebuTa
varied? each level is just the same old stuff. a pool of 3-4 enemies, surpress them, flank them, kill them. and on to the next 4 groups of enemies. and once in a while you can ride a tank or go solo. that's it. graphics are pretty good but not outstanding good
It's as varied as other games like COD4 or GOW. Find cover, point and shoot. Move to next cover: find enemy point and shoot. Everyone dead; move to next area and repeat proces...

If you want extremely varied gameplay play Zelda :)
Commented on 2008-10-06 07:52:52 In reply to newbielives
Posted by newbielives
Is the 360's framerate only better in cut scenes or during gameplay aswell?
During gameplay, the framerate is solid on both systems.
Commented on 2008-10-06 08:00:36 In reply to moroboshi
Posted by moroboshi
I played through the demo and was unimpressed. It's not a bad game to play, just average, but visually it's really sub-par. It has an overly colourful cartoony look, which is pretty gaudy at times, the lip syncing and animation in general is absolutely terrible, the environments are simplistic and flat, and the frame rate is all over the place.

With all the amazing games due out soon this is going to get lost, and it will be no great loss.
There are some flaws in the graphic department, but as the game progresses, the visuals become very good. The environments are not simplistic, they are varied as much as possible knowing that it all takes place in the same part of the Netherlands. If you only played the demo, you can't judge that. The animations are very good. The lipsync is a bit off, but isn't a real problem. You are missing out on a good tactical FPS. It's not game of the year, but definitely worth it.
Commented on 2008-10-06 09:18:01 In reply to droezelke
Posted by droezelke
During gameplay, the framerate is solid on both systems.
In cutscenes, both versions have stuttering. No difference between the 360 and the PS3.
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