The Gist of Arma 3 – Comic game review
This is more or less my experience (and I loved it).
So, a new day, a new Gist game review. This time it’s the gist of Arma 3, summarised in psuedocomic fashion.
First thing I learnt: Arma (ARMA?) 3 (III?) is a military sim, not an FPS action shooter thing. No COD going on here! Not all acronym based soldier games are made equal, oh no.
So instead of running around Evilstan blowing away Johnny Muslim, in Arma 3 you’re taking part in more of a simulated island campaign. Okay, admittedly, it’s set in Greecesque and you’re blowing away Johnny Pompapopolous, which isn’t exactly better, but the point is that the jingoism of action shooter games isn’t present. It’s just a fictional theatre of war.
Get Your ARMA On
Admittedly, for a story loving man, Arma’s story is thin on the ground (there’s some in the single player campaign, but it isn’t War and Peace. Despite quoting from every book that has a war in it). What it does offer is a tremendous multiplayer experience and some excellent combat sim action, where you actually have to think about your engagement. Expect to be fighting at 500+ metre distances, using cover, inspecting the topography and losing an awful lot. I enjoyed Dark Souls so much, I apparently found the FPS equivalent. You stick your head out… you die. You cross open ground at the wrong moment… you die. You find a tank and fail to hide within 2 seconds… you die.
This is fine, by the way. It’s challenging and rewarding. The only frustration comes when the bugs get in the way, because then you feel that the difficulty isn’t fair. And yes, this is a buggy game, with soldiers standing around like arses, or failing to get into cars, or running each other over, or just deciding to take menus off you, like a naughty boy. Seriously though, it’s not a big deal- in fact, i’s often hilarious, because the game is so straight laced. The tone is serious, the action intense and realistic… you’re on a knife edge advancing through a town… then a guy walks into a tank, which decides to flip upside down and explode. Or a helicopter leaves with all your men on it (not a bug, my fault). The point is that when things go wrong, it’s an absolute pisser.
Hang on, I’m meant to be gisting. Buggy but funny, visually stunning, hard but rewarding, realistic and interesting. You will gain a newfound respect for front line soldiers, because there’s a technical aspect to Arma which you don’t see with run-and-gun games. Victories are partly cerebral. Lastly, it’s always being updated and the latest big update added the enormous Tanoa, so you can go to Tropicland and kill Johnny… erm… Fiji… guy… jungle man. Fuck knows, but it’s excellent.
You can get the game here. Enjoy!