Too slow-paced for most gamers
America's Army was created to help recruit and train soldiers for the American army. It serves this purpose quite well, for the game is packed with propaganda about how the army are the good guys beating the bad guys.
Before you actually get to play the game, you need to register a user account, which takes about five minutes of your precious time. Once you have registered you have to complete a series of training missions to actually play the game. That wouldn't be such a problem if the whole training thing wasn't so boring. And you would expect training to be about getting used to the controls. However, most of the training consists of lectures and taking tests afterwards. The lectures take five to ten minutes.
When you finally get to play the game, you choose a team and wait for the next round to start. This wouldn't be a problem if the rounds weren't slow-paced and dull. The game boasts about how realistic it is, and it is realistic - a bit too realistic. People in small groups going around hunting for campers, who always seem to have a faster trigger finger than you. The whole strategy in the game is sneaking up to the enemy from behind.
The maps in the game are large and diverse, so you won't be bored for a while - too bad there is only a selection of maps that are played online. The maps range from capturing crates to getting from point A to point B to blowing up enemy weapon stashes.
The Graphics in the game are nice and above average for a freeware game. They rival those of some commercial games and enhance the atmosphere of the game quite a bit. The character models are done well and have ragdoll physics. The bodies of fallen enemies and comrades stay on the battlefield for the length of the round.
In the game, you always play the Americans or the indigenous forces working alongside the Americans, and are always fighting the evil terrorists. You cannot play the terrorists, which is kind of a disappointment. The game would have more depth if you could play the terrorists, but it would conflict with the purpose of the game. Also, there is a limited amount of weapon classes you can choose from and usually you will just get the normal rifle, unless you play well and get to choose your class first.
America's Army is a well done, good and fun shooter if you have nothing better to do, but it fails to match up to commercial titles like Counter Strike.
Review by: Potatoe
Safe for ages: 15+
3-D graphics card with 64 MB memory and support for hardware transformation and lighting
1.5 GHz processor or equivalent
English version of Windows(r) 2000/XP Operating System with all updates
2.00GB of uncompressed hard disk space for game files