Medal of Honor: Underground

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Medal of Honor: Underground
Medal of Honor - Underground Coverart.png
Developer(s) DreamWorks Interactive
Rebellion Developments (GBA)
Publisher(s) Electronic Arts
Game Boy Advance
Producer(s) Scott J. Langteau
Designer(s) Lynn Henson
Programmer(s) Adrian Jones
Composer(s) Michael Giacchino
Series Medal of Honor
Platform(s) PlayStation, Game Boy Advance
Release PlayStation
  • NA: October 23, 2000
  • EU: December 1, 2000
  • NA: June 11, 2009 (PSN)[1]
Game Boy Advance
  • NA: December 2, 2002
  • EU: May 2003
Genre(s) First-person shooter
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Medal of Honor: Underground is a video game that is a partial prequel to the World War II hit Medal of Honor. It was initially released for the PlayStation video game console on October 23, 2000. In 2002, the game was re-released in Europe as part of the compilation Medal of Honor / Medal of Honor: Underground.[2] It later was re-released a second time on the North American PlayStation Network for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable as a 474 MB file for $5.99 on June 11, 2009.[3] It was developed by DreamWorks Interactive and was published by Electronic Arts. Prima released a strategy guide for the game in 2000 featuring the same cover art as the original PlayStation release.[4]

Gameplay[edit]

After completing the game, the player can play a non-canon bonus level, named "Panzerknacker Unleashed", in which the player plays as Lt. Jimmy Patterson, who has been sent to a castle after the Allied Forces received a distress signal from there. Many strange enemies are fought at the castle, including dancing dogs which are armed with machine guns and drive half-tracks, knights carrying battle axes, Zombie soldiers, robotic soldiers and several large nutcrackers, called Panzerknacker. The objective of all of the three missions available in this level is to build your own Panzerknacker, who assists you in the final mission.[5]

Plot[edit]

Patrick Klepek (noted video game reviewer from Kotaku and Giant Bomb) explained in Gaming Age how "Gamers who played Medal of Honor will remember Manon Batiste, part of the French Resistance, who was an enormous help toward Lt. Patterson's efforts. Set in the era of World War II, the year is 1940 and the German armies have overrun Manon's town. Attempting to survive with her brother and the few people still around in her town, Manon's best companion, her brother, is tragically killed during a routine raid to retrieve weapon supplies. Manon then sets out to meet up with her brother's contacts in order to fight against the Nazis. It will take all her strength and perseverance in order to move up the ranks in the OSS so that she can head back home and help in the liberation of her nation."[6] According to GamePro, Manon is a "young member of the French Resistance introduced as Jimmy Patterson's 'control' in the original Medal of Honor. Set prior to the start of the original Medal of Honor game, Underground follows Manon's journey from a naive member of one of France's first resistance movements to that of a seasoned veteran recruited by the OSS, going on covert missions in occupied Europe and Africa, including the destruction of a Tobruk supply base, destruction of coastal guns in Crete, stealing important documents from Heinrich Himmler's castle, rescuing prisoners of war from Monte Cassino and the sabotage of a V-1 flying bomb factory. Manon ultimately becomes a key figure in the Allied invasion at Normandy and returns to Paris to assist in its liberation from German occupation.[7]

Development[edit]

Main character Manon Batiste is based on Hélène Deschamps Adams, a real life member of the OSS,[8] the forerunner of CIA. Adams herself appears in the game's final mission to brief Manon before each level.

Michael Giacchino explains that for "Manon, I wanted a theme that could convey one emotion at a particular moment, and then a completely different emotion the next without having to rely on two completely different themes. As a result, Manon's two main themes are very similar and yet very different. One version of the theme stays the course in a major tone, conveying a feel of great national purpose against the Nazi menace, and the secondary theme dips into a minor 6th chord which describes Manon's more intimate and emotional feelings as an individual and a woman who is pitted against the fascist war machine. Both of these themes are bookended with what liner notes author Paul Tonks has aptly named 'the resolve theme'. This theme was meant to represent the moments where Manon is called upon to steel her nerves and gather the courage to continue on with the fight....Manon travels to places that are not quite so militaristic as Jimmy Patterson. Her journey was a bit more 'scenic'."[9] Critic Ian Lace said of her theme: "One has to suppose that the main character of this new game, Manon, inspired by the exploits of Hélène Déschamps is French. Michael Giacchino has created a theme for her that in its first few notes irresistibly makes me want to anticipate the old pop song, 'Arrivederci Roma' which I found disconcerting because she is French and so much of the action, particularly at the beginning and end, takes place in Paris."[10]

Producer Scott Langteau offers that "Underground had an entirely different feel than the original MOH, and yet the gameplay was entirely familiar. That's what we tried to do, anyway. In Underground, it was personal. The game's front end was gritty and less militarily organized; it was rustic and roughly hewn. The same can be said for the game. Manon used petrol bombs and also used her femininity to gain access to restricted areas. We used the freedom of telling her backstory- she was in the French Resistance, then joined the OSS-to give the game its own flair and widely varied missions that took us all over Europe: Greece, Italy, etc."[11]

Release[edit]

Game Boy Advance version[edit]

Medal of Honor: Underground is also a Game Boy Advance game released on November 25, 2002. It is a first-person shooter based on the PlayStation version. The game was developed by Rebellion Developments and published by Destination Software. Underground for the GBA features up to 4 players using the Game Boy link cable and lex levels. The game is played in a three dimensional environment. The game's objectives usually revolve around finding certain papers. There is no save system however, each level has a code to play again in the future which can be viewed by pausing the game.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Review scores
Publication Score
GBA PS
AllGame N/A 3.5/5 stars[14]
Edge N/A 7/10[15]
EGM N/A 5.67/10[16]
Game Informer N/A 9/10[17]
GamePro N/A 5/5 stars[18]
Game Revolution N/A B[19]
GameSpot 5.5/10[20] 7.6/10[21]
IGN N/A 9/10[22]
Nintendo Power 2.3/5[23] N/A
OPM (US) N/A 4/5 stars[24]
Maxim N/A 8/10[25]
Aggregate score
Metacritic 46/100[12] 86/100[13]

The PlayStation version received "favorable" reviews, while the Game Boy Advance version received "unfavorable" reviews, according to video game review aggregator Metacritic.[12][13]

GameSpot praised the makers of the PS version for taking "a character from the original game named Manon Batiste and [placing] her in the lead role so that her full story can be told. This setting is a welcome change, as Underground provides a meaningful historical context that's rare in most video games today."[21] William Abner similarly described the same version as "a refreshing change of pace because you played Manon Batiste, a woman enlisted in the French Resistance."[26] RealPoor ranked her among the 12 Best Female Characters in Video Games, declaring that we "know Manon as a French resistance woman who appeared as an advisor in the first MoH game. In the sequel for PlayStation called Medal of Honor: Underground, she is the main character who takes on covert missions in occupied Europe and Africa."[27]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Medal of Honor Underground - PlayStation 3". IGN. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Medal of Honor / Medal of Honor: Underground for PlayStation". GameFAQs. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  3. ^ Chen, Grace (June 11, 2009). "PlayStation Store Update". PlayStation.Blog. Sony. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  4. ^ Barasch, Alan (2000). Medal of Honor: Underground: Prima's Official Strategy Guide. Prima Games. ISBN 9780761533276. 
  5. ^ Air Hendrix (March 28, 2002). "Medal of Honor Week: (Almost) Everything Else You Wanted To Know But Were Afraid To Ask". GamePro. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. 
  6. ^ Klepek, Patrick (November 22, 2000). "Review of Medal of Honor: Underground". Gaming Age. 
  7. ^ "Medal of Honor Underground". GamePro. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. 
  8. ^ Talley, William (November 16, 2008). "$20 Game of the Week & Lost Classics: Post Veteran Day Special". Powetblog. POWET.TV. 
  9. ^ Giacchino, Michael. "Interview with Michael Giacchino". Interview with Gary Huff. Soundtrack Review.net. Archived from the original on February 27, 2012. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  10. ^ Lace, Ian (January 2001). "Medal of Honor (Underground): Film Music CD Reviews". MusicWeb International. 
  11. ^ Air Hendrix (March 27, 2002). "Medal of Honor Week: Sound Design & Creating Good Sequels". GamePro. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. 
  12. ^ a b "Medal of Honor: Underground for Game Boy Advance Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved November 2, 2012. 
  13. ^ a b "Medal of Honor Underground for PlayStation Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved November 2, 2012. 
  14. ^ Barnes, J.C. "Medal of Honor: Underground (PS) - Review". AllGame. Archived from the original on November 16, 2014. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  15. ^ Edge staff (December 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground (PS)". Edge (91). 
  16. ^ EGM staff (December 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground (PS)". Electronic Gaming Monthly. 
  17. ^ Fitzloff, Jay (November 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground (PS)". Game Informer (91). Archived from the original on February 12, 2008. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  18. ^ Air Hendrix (December 1, 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground for PlayStation on GamePro.com". GamePro. Archived from the original on February 12, 2005. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  19. ^ Liu, Johnny (November 2000). "Medal of Honor: Underground Review (PS)". Game Revolution. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  20. ^ Provo, Frank (February 3, 2003). "Medal of Honor: Underground Review (GBA)". GameSpot. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  21. ^ a b Shoemaker, Brad (November 3, 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground Review (PS)". GameSpot. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  22. ^ Perry, Douglass C. (October 31, 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground (PS)". IGN. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  23. ^ "Medal of Honor: Underground". Nintendo Power. 159: 146. August 2002. 
  24. ^ Kennedy, Sam (December 2000). "Medal of Honor Underground". Official U.S. PlayStation Magazine. Archived from the original on January 27, 2001. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  25. ^ Porter, Alex (2000). "Medal of Honor Underground (PS)". Maxim. Archived from the original on January 27, 2001. Retrieved September 20, 2015. 
  26. ^ Abner, William (2005). Gamer's Tome of Ultimate Wisdom: An Almanac of Pimps, Orcs, and Lightsabers. Que. p. 105. ISBN 9780789734655. 
  27. ^ windshell (April 30, 2009). "12 Best Female Characters in Video Games". RealPoor. Archived from the original on February 27, 2012. 

External links[edit]