Medal of Honor is a first-person shooter developed by DreamWorks Interactive and published by Electronic Arts (EA). It was the first non-fantasy World War II first-person shooter and created a whole genre of video games related to the period temoinages. Medal of Honor soon spawned an entire series, and became the first game in that series. It was released in North America on Veteran's Day, November 11, 1999, for the Sony PlayStation. Much later the game was released as a PS1 Classic for the PlayStation Portable and PlayStation 3 in June 2, 2009.
Story and Missions
"Tomorrow is D-Day. Tonight you land behind enemy lines. The tide of the war is in your hands. You are an elite Special Forces agent sent to execute covert operations, search and rescue missions, commando raids. Fight to win the Medal of Honor in the only game that lets you take on the Nazis in WWII."
-- Writing on the back cover of the game.
In Medal of Honor, you play as Lieutenant James Steven "Jimmy" Patterson, a graduate of West Point and an American OSS operative. Throughout the game, you are required to complete many objectives, from stealing a set of documents to scuttling a German U-Boat to destroying an entire missile factory. All of these objectives eventually lead to the fall of the Nazi Party (May 7, 1945). The story was written by Stevene Spielberg. Jimmy's numerous missions take him all across the European theater where, behind enemy lines and almost always alone, he is trusted to complete his objectives. His missions are as follows:
- Mission 1 - A new OSS recruit, Jimmy is deployed in France to find and rescue an American G3 pilot who was downed near Dubuisson, France, in 1944.
- Mission 2 - Disguised as a Wehrmacht ("Defensive Might", German army) captain, he returns to France on a mission to destroy Greta, a massive railgun causing trouble for advancing Allied troops. (One of the levels, Sneak Into the Rail Station)
- Mission 3 - Once more undercover, this time as a Kriegsmarine ("War Navy", German navy) officer, Jimmy must scuttle German U-Boat U-4901 during its maiden voyage to Bremen. On the way, he boards Wolfram, a Nazi freighter that takes him to Dachsmag where the U-Boat was currently located.
- Mission 4 - Behind the Siegfried Line, Jimmy's next objective is to uncover the secrets within Fort Schmerzen ("Fort Pain"). He finds out that it's being used as a mustard gas production facility, and, on his way out, floods the fort with its own gas. Not long after him, Lieutenant Mike Powell revisits the fort in Medal of Honor: Allied Assault to permanently destroy it.
- Mission 5 - Heavy Water is a key component to the construction of atomic bombs. In Rjukan, Norway, is a Nazi-occupied hydro plant where Heavy Water is being produced. Jimmy is deployed to destroy it.
- Mission 6 - During their invasion of France, the Germans stole many famous and valuable works of art. Most, if not all, of it was stockpiled in the depths of a salt mine near Alt Aussee, Austria, waiting to be transported to Reichsmarschall Göring's private residence. Jimmy is sent on a recovery mission to retrieve those pieces of art and sabotage the mines.
- Mission 7 - For his final mission in Medal of Honor, Jimmy is deployed intro Germany itself on a American hunter to destroy a V2 Ballistic Rocket production facility before the missiles can be used against the Allied Powers.
Medal of Honor has a mix of American and German weapons. The 2 players can use a multitude of weapons ranging from a suppressed pistol to a bazooka. Like in many Medal of Honor games, the player may use explosives to destroy objectives.
- M1 Garand
- Colt 1911A1
- M1903/A5 Springfield
- M1A1 Thompson
- Browning Automatic Rifle
- Winchester Model 12 Shotgun
- MK II Grenade
- M9A1 Bazooka
- Walther P38
- Silenced Pistol
- Karabiner 98 Kurz (enemy use only)
- Panzerschreck (enemy use only)
- Demolition Charges
Michael Giacchino was hired to compose the music in Medal of Honor. The music is described as atmospheric; it fits the mood of the level's gameplay, including quiet and ambient music when undercover and upbeat and dramatic music when in an escape mission. Here is a list of the tracks in Medal of Honor:
- Medal of Honor (4:10)
- Locating Enemy Positions (4:10)
- Taking out the Railgun (3:51)
- Attack on Fort Schmerzen (3:58)
- The Radar Train (3:34)
- Rescuing the G3 Officer (4:09)
- Panzer Attack (4:16)
- Rjuken Sabotage (4:07)
- The U-Boat (4:42)
- Merker's Salt Mine (4:08)
- Approaching Colditz Castle (3:22)
- Securing the Codebook (3:36)
- Nordhausen (3:17)
- Stopping the V2 Launch (4:13)
- The Jet Aircraft Facility (3:28)
- The Road to Berlin (3:06)
- Medal of Honor (Alternate) (2:55)
- The Road to Berlin (Alternate) (4:13)
- V2 Rocket launch (1:19)
- The Star Spangled Banner (Bonus) (2:06)
List of music in the game: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL97006F896F6A5D2D
Original Trailer of the game was present in another DreamWorks' game, the 1998. Small Soldiers. This is the way more different version of the game than a trailer seen in game. It shows a design of the levels, mission arts and, the most important, gameplay videos. In those videos, many differences can be seen:
- Health Meter - In the beta version, health meter was a thick bar filled with a color that was changing considering the taken damage. Green was for a fine status, light brown/orange for medium-to-low health status, and red was for a critical status, when the player's health is in danger. In later versions, it was a compass with a multi-colored border. With taking damage, colored part was getting black, until becoming completely black, thus dying.
- Weapons - Weapons had the different skins and reloading animations. There was originally no muzzle flash upon firing a weapon.
- Thompson M1928A1 (with 20 rounds)
- M1A1 Bazooka
- Enemies - Enemies were somewhat less detailed, especially facial lines and textures. Also, Wehrmacht's main color of the uniform was a bit more greenish, similar as in Allied Assault.
- Gore - None of the other World War II Medal of Honor games had the gibbing option. But, the beta version of the Medal of Honor had the gibbing and gore animations. Enemies were bleeding when being shot in well-circulated body parts. Also, explosive weapons were possible of gibbing enemies on many different ways.
- Missions - Mission art and wire frame models are shown from the lost "Panzer Attack" mission, namely that of two soldiers talking in front of a Tiger I.
- Soundtrack - Music in the trailer is not the full orchestral mix featured in-game, but the MIDI-score, utilizing much more synthesized instrumentation.
For more details, visit the main article: James Steven Patterson
James Steven "Jimmy" Patterson was born on November 11, 1919, in Carthage, Missouri. He attended the University of Michigan for a time before switching over to, and graduating from, West Point. He attended Officer Candidate School in May 1942. He was assigned to the Office of Strategic Services after saving members of his crew during the night before D-Day on June 6, 1944.
The idea for the game was pitched by Steven Spielberg in November 1997. The idea was to teach people about WWII through an interactive game.
To make the game look and feel authentic and historically accurate, the developers consulted the retired U.S. Marine Captain Dale Dye, a veteran of the Vietnam War. Dye put the developers through the same military training he put the creators of Saving Private Ryan through. Actual World War II footage was used during the in-game briefings and cutscenes to immerse the player in the time period. The developers even went so far as to record the actual sound the weapons made when shot. Footage of the training can be watched in the special features of Medal of Honor: Frontline, entitled, A Good Day to Dye.
On the Imagine Games Network (IGN) poll, Medal of Honor was, out of 25 games, ranked as the 21st greatest game of all time. It also received the "Greatest Hits" title.
In his 1999 review of the game, Doug Perry of IGN gave it a 9.3/10, comparing it to Goldeneye 007 with the phrase, "Goldeneye for the PlayStation has finally arrived."
PSX Extreme awarded it an overall score of 9.5/10, where it was again compared to Goldeneye: "Mixing the story of Saving Private Ryan and the action of GoldenEye, Medal of Honor is truly one of the year's best games ever."
Rescue the G3 Officer (June 12, 1944)
Destroy the Mighty Railgun Greta (June 15, 1944)
Scuttle Das Boot U-4901 (June 23-28, 1944)
Attack Impenetrable Fort Schmerzen (November 25, 1944)
Sabotage the Rjukan Hydro Plant (February 1, 1945)
Capture the Secret German Treasure (February 20, 1945)
Escape from the V2 Rocket Plant (March 25, 1945)