Review by Wisp
Here's a mission that lives up to its name. I know the Australian Regiment produces some tough blokes, but in Anmac's world, these supermen are sent in to destroy a company-sized Russian force, including its armored support.
Still, judging from the witty subtitles and the AC/DC and U2 rock racks that accompany your insertion, it's clear that the author doesn't take his mission all that seriously. This one is all about fun and, if you don't mind the occasional frustrating difficulty, there is much fun to be had.
Anmac's effort is one of those missions that shows the community How It's Done: how to use addons, custom music, clever scripting, balanced gameplay, and polish it all off with intros, outros, and proper documentation. There is a staggering attention to detail, such as the use of environmental sounds, as many radio samples as could be crammed in, a trigger that makes your character speak when wounded, the devious placement of enemy units and much more.
But what impressed me the most is the actual mission design. Although at first glance it seems as if the author chose quantity over quality when designing the enemy threat, it soon becomes apparent how neatly balanced the challenge is. As you start to use guerrilla tactics, striking at the enemy and then retreating, re-arming at a hidden base, then taking a new approach to the objective, you realize that the key to beating the mission is using the few assets you are given.
The most frustrating obstacle is a handful of T80 tanks, which shrug off your LAWs as if they are pebbles. Taking these suckers out can be a pain, but you get a real sense of accomplishment when you do.
This mission rewards clever thinking, and the deeper you advance, the more important your tactical decisions become. Perhaps your greatest asset is the Heavy M113, an APC which serves as a portable weapons cache and fire platform. During my runs, this vehicle became the lifeline of my squad. A good example of using an addon to really enhance the gameplay of the mission.
Most of the other addons are there for cosmetics only. I personally don't think the textures of the Australian S70 and units are that brilliant, but the author used what he could and I'm here to review the mission, not the addons. I do think the RAF Chinhook is a little redundant, the way it's used in the mission - I'm from the school of thought that says if you don't really need an addon in your mission, leave it out for user-friendliness sake. Why force a player to download a vehicle that hardly features in the mission?
My only other point of criticism is the fact that it can be hard to trigger some of the victory conditions. This is always a problem with those 'seek and destroy' type objectives in a large area: if you miss one straggler, the mission won't end. A couple of times, I had to zig-zag over the area at 4x speed to catch the last bad guy.
But these are very minor complaints about a fun and well-realized mission. This one is heartily approved and recommend.
(Review version 1.3 - Date: Mar 2002)
Pros: Long, exciting, great attention to detail
Cons: Tough, often frustrating