Every map on America’s Army also supports several mission modes. There’s VIP, where one team will try to escort a special person to a safe destination while another team tries to kill him. Take and Hold mission requires a team to hold and protect important areas around the map. The one who holds more areas wins. Another mode which I find thrilling is Activated Objective which requires your team to defend an area which the opposition will try to take away from you. A scenario that’s all too familiar to US Army special forces troops.
In America’s Army 3, killing the enemy is not the topmost objective. Rankings are based on mission accomplishments. While you are very skilled in FPS shooting with your superb hand-eye coordination, you will win more points if you successfully defend a VIP or mission area. Newbie players usually forget this that’s why they still lose even if they have more kill scores. See our tips and tricks relevant to America’s Army 3 Maps in the second part of our game review.
Killing an enemy only gives 1 point while fulfilling a mission directive from your squad leader will give you 4 points! Run and gun tactics will not be best for America’s Army, you really have to follow this game’s US Army-certified standard operating procedures. Teamwork is demanded out of each player. You will not gain experience and level up if you don’t learn how to operate in a team. Seasoned players will keep kicking you out of every match you join once you get the reputation for being a recalcitrant player.
Each match in America’s Army 3 has six rounds and also has a tie-breaking 7th round if the score is tied. The opposing teams also switch positions after every 3 rounds to make the game balanced. There is no respawning in this game and you have to wait for the round to finish before you can join again. Although there are no health potions for America’s Army, be sure to have a Medic in your team to give first to wounded members.
Targetting is also very realistic, don’t expect to always hit your target because this game’s programming considers other factors when calculating weapon accuracy. For example, you have a greater chance of hitting your enemy if you are in a prone position compared to a running one. America’s Army will also even give you better hit chances if you hold your breath when you squeeze your M4A1! You need to press and hold the Spacebar on your keyboard to hold your breath. America’s Army also features real ballistic simulation, bullet trajectory gets affected by previous bullets fired. You can hit better when you fire single shots instead of prolonged automatic burst fires.
Success in this game is greatly supported by the embedded team VOIP. Use this feature like real soldiers or SWAT police do to coordinate assaults. A good team leader should always issue relevant commands and not just idle chitchats or boastful screams. Killing a pesky sniper can be done easier if you can issue an order to your team mate to quietly offer himself a bait while you issue another order to another team mate to throw a grenade to that sniper when he pops up his head!
For each successful mission you do, you get to unlock new abilities and items to customize your soldier equipments. The better you play, the tougher your soldier will be. Playing it on Steam gives you 17 kinds of Achievements too. Win missions and you will get medals, ribbons and special reward badges. Top players will get be on Steam’s rankings page. Play this game like you are a real solder and not just punk gamer because U.S. Army recruitment officers are constantly monitoring the rankings on Steam. Who knows, maybe the U.S. army will soon send you formal application papers to join the world’s greatest army. Third-world gamers like me might even get this easy chance to become a US citizen just by being one of the best in this game.
America’s Army 3 is now compatible with PC and Mac OS X computers that have Steam installed. Linux gamers can still play it using Wine emulation. Some Youtube videos can be watched by gamers to get a first taste of what good first-person shooter games should be like. Just go to youtube.com and search for America’s Army 3 and you’re good to go.