Saturday, August 8, 2009

War Stories: Battlefield 2 - The Glory Days

This is the first of hopefully many War Stories posts in which I shall reminisce about truly awesome moments of gaming. So without further ado (clears throat).

It was the beginning of summer in 2005 and the battlefield 2 demo had just been released. My brother Sam and I had just installed it and were gearing up for our first battle in the game that would soon become my favorite first person shooter of all time. The computers were side by side, I had calibrated my joystick and setup the controls for chopper flight. We jumped into a 64 player server and decided to test out the combat helicopters.

After camping on the helipad for about a minute the chopper spawned and we both jumped in. Me in the pilot seat and Sam in the gunner seat. It was the Mi-28 Havoc attack helicopter. This thing looked mean. Loaded with rapid fire javelin rockets, TV guided missiles and an explosive round machine gun, we set off to see what kind of havoc we could cause.

According to the map, the US forces were trying to take some of the beach head bases and I made for a low altitude approach toward the closest one. I decided to keep the chopper moving fast to avoid fire and we made for a strafing run. On our approach we could see heavy fire fights between the ground forces. Sam opened up fire with the machine gun and began picking off the invading forces. The explosive rounds tore through the infantry as if they we made of paper. The bullets didn't even need to hit the enemy; simply land within 10 feet of them and the splash damage would do the rest. A we took a couple hits from small arms fire on the way over the installation but the Havoc's armor handled it with ease.

3 kills from the first strafe. Not bad.. But the enemy had managed to take the installation and now their ground vehicles had spawned. As I reeled the chopper around we could see an armored transport in the distance. "Sam why don't you give the TV guided missiles a try". I hovered the chopper and looked over at my brothers screen to help align his targeting reticule.

Sam fired the missile and I watched his screen as he guided it toward the tank. The missile picked up speed and his maneuvering took it off course at the last second. There was a large explosion in the distance. A close miss.. no biggie, but the transport was now on the move toward another outpost. Sam took a second shot. This time I watched the missile streak toward the transport from the pilot seat. Bam! The transport went up in a giant explosion and we saw 3 more kills appear on the scoreboard. This - was - awesome!

I dipped the nose of the chopper and we went careening off into the battlefield. This time around the enemy troops turned and ran when they saw us coming. Unfortunately for them they were on a beach with little to no cover and there was a fully armed attack chopper bearing down on them. Sam opened up with the machine gun and made quick work of the infantry while I unleashed a volley of javelin rockets on an unsuspecting dune buggy.

The kills were racking up and the battlefield was getting ugly. The enemy was now moving around the map. The radar showed a large force taking over the construction site outpost. There had to be at least 20 soldiers in the area and we headed over, eager to nab some easy kills.

As the construction site came into view it became apparent that the enemy was holding up in a four story open level building. Although the building hadn't been finished there were several walls in place and the windows were dark. It was hard to see anyone inside. I brought the chopper down to peer inside. A rocket shot out from the dark and missed the cockpit by mere feet. Sam fired into the building and a kill registered. I backed the chopper off but another rocket was fired from a window, and this one was coming right at us. I banked to the left as the rocket whined past.

It was time to test my flying skills. I banked the chopper and and begin orbiting the building always with the nose pointing toward the structure. More rockets we fired at us but the moving chopper was too hard to hit. Sam begin firing inside erratically and the kills began to rack up. Five kills.. ten kills.. Soldiers began the flee from the building only to be gunned down by explosive rounds. I began to fire javelins inside nabbing a couple kills of my own. This "defensive" structure was becoming one big mausoleum. After a while, the enemy fire ceased.. There wasn't anybody left.

The round ended and the scoreboard appeared. "Rakanishu" (me) and "The Walrus" (Sam) - 67 kills each. The next highest score on the list was 19. We exchanged glances, cracked our knuckles and geared up for the next round. This was gonna be a good day.

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