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Call of Duty: Finest Hour
Codfhbox.jpg
North American Xbox cover art
Developer(s) Spark Unlimited
Publisher(s) Activision
Designer(s) Eric Church
Writer(s) Michael Schiffer
Composer(s) Michael Giacchino
Series Call Of Duty series
Engine RenderWare
Platform(s) PlayStation 2, Nintendo GameCube, Xbox
Release date(s) GameCube
NA November 16, 2004
PAL November 26, 2004
PlayStation 2 & Xbox
NA November 16, 2004
PAL December 2, 2004
Genre(s) First-person shooter
Mode(s) Single-player, Multiplayer
Rating(s) BBFC: 15
ESRB: T
OFLC: MA15+
PEGI: 16+
Media DVD, Nintendo optical disc
Input methods Gamepad

Call of Duty: Finest Hour is a 2004 first-person shooter developed for the Xbox, PlayStation 2 and GameCube video game consoles. It was published by Activision and developed by Spark Unlimited and is the first console installment of Call of Duty.

Although it is based on the original Call of Duty for the PC, it has a completely different storyline. In the spirit of previous Call of Duty games, it features six different perspectives with stories and battles based on real world events from soldiers on each side of the allied campaign (U.S., British, and Soviet). Finest Hour was released on November 16, 2004 in North America. It was followed up by a sequel, Call of Duty 2: Big Red One, in 2005.

The game's music was composed by Michael Giacchino who previously worked on the original Call of Duty and the Medal of Honor franchise. AC/DC singer Brian Johnson provides the voice of Sergeant Starkey of the British commandos.

Contents

Multiplayer

Finest Hour has no online multi-player on GameCube because the developers chose not to program it in. On Xbox, Finest Hour is Xbox Live compatible and, through system links, has the potential for up to 32 players. This game is also online compatible for PlayStation 2 for up to 16 players per session.

Plot

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Characters

  • Private Aleksandr Sokolov is the first playable protagonist and one of the three playable Russian characters in the game.
  • Lieutenant Tanya Pavelovna is a Russian sniper. She is encountered by Sokolov, who takes on the role of the second player character on the Russian front.
  • Lieutenant (later Major) Nikolai Badanov is a Russian tank commander who encounters Sokolov and Pavelonva. With their help he secures a T34 tank. Badanov then becomes the player's character for the remainder of the Russian campaign.
  • Edward Carlyle is a British commando serving in North Africa. He is in charge of Demolitions and is the player's character for the entirety of the African campaign.
  • Sergeant (later Lieutenant) Chuck Walker is a member of the U.S. Army's 1st Infantry Division and a veteran of D-Day. His squad is tasked with clearing the German resistance from Aachen and finally from the last bridge over the Rhine at Remagen.
  • Sergeant Sam Rivers is a U.S. tank commander. Rivers is only the player's character for a single mission in which his tank backs up American forces during the German Assault on Bastogne. He is later seen in the mission at Remagen, but this time, not as a player's character.

Eastern front

In the Russian campaign, Private Aleksandr Sokolov starts in Stalingrad, Russia. After fighting his way up a shoreline and through several buildings, Sokolov meets Lieutenant Tanya Pavelovna. She sends Sokolov on a mission to capture a German bunker. After the mission is completed, Sokolov becomes Pavelovna's spotter as the two work to harass the Germans. The game then switches over to Pavelovna. Pavelovna then clears out a section of the German-occupied sewers and helps defend a tractor factory that has been converted to the role of manufacturing T-34s. Upon successfully defending the factory, a tank crew, led by Nikolai Badanov, arrives to man the tank just as a Panzer IV advances on the factory. Atop the T-34, Sokolov and Pavelovna escape the factory. The player next assumes the role of Nikolai Badanov. Nikolai stops at General Belov's headquarters after fighting through pockets of German resistance. He then receives orders to deliver a radio to a team of spotters whose radio had been damaged. Without radio contact, the Soviet artillery has not been receiving target coordinates. Badanov's task is to recapture the ruins of Red Square, arrive at the Stalingrad train station, break through to the team, and deliver the radio. Thanks to Badanov, the German force is destroyed by rockets and General Belov is safe. Afterwards, Badanov is involved in the Russian assault on a German airfield at Tatsinskaya. This attack is codenamed Operation Little Saturn. He fights through the heavily defended barracks and supply areas. Nikolai and other T-34s proceed to the airstrip to destroy German aircraft. Upon destroying the airfield they meet up with more Soviets to assault the German headquarter's air traffic control.

North African front

The British campaign follows Edward Carlyle. Carlyle embarks on a night raid in Matmata to destroy a German fuel depot. The commando team, led by Sergeant Starkey, manages to destroy the depot, a radio post, and an electrical generator. Sticky bombs and teller mines are used to take out German armor. Following the Matmata raid, a jeep picks up Starkey and Carlyle. As they refuel in the desert, a German shoots the machine gunner. Carlyle quickly mans the .50 caliber machine gun to shoot at German vehicles, aircraft and soldiers. A Stuka drops a bomb that separates Starkey and Carlyle. Thrust into the battle for an unnamed Roman fortress, Carlyle destroys the German entrance. This stops them from entering and silences the MG42s. He then rescues Sgt. Dehart, who was trapped on the roof of a German strong point. After being rescued, Dehart tells Carlyle that a cartographer is being held prisoner. This cartographer has vital information. He knows a way to outflank Rommel through the desert. Carlyle finishes off the German remnants and rescues the cartographer. While saving him, he also finds Starkey.

Western front

The American missions see the player control Chuck Walker, sergeant of the American 1st Infantry Division. The first three missions concentrate on the capture of Aachen. Walker and his friend Benny Church are promoted for their service in Aachen. After capturing Aachen, the story shifts focus to M4 Sherman tank commander Sam Rivers, a young black man who has been made sergeant for his commitment and bravery. After successfully helping to fend off Germans around Bastogne, the player returns to now-Lieutenant Walker. Walker's new mission is to infiltrate the city of Remagen and scout the status of a bridge that is rumored to still stand over the Rhine. After finding the bridge, Walker teams up with Rivers. He and his men protect Rivers' tanks and escort them to the bridge. Upon reaching the bridge, a huge hole in the ground prevents the tanks from moving on. Unfortunately, this means that Walker and his squad must capture the bridge alone. Walker operates a Flakvierling anti-aircraft gun on top of a tower and fends off the counterattacking German Stukas after crossing. They rebuff the aerial threat and Walker hangs the US flag over the tower and waves the tank column in.

Reception

 Reception
Review scores
Publication Score
GC PS2 Xbox
GameSpot 6.6 out of 10[1] 6.7 out of 10[2] 6.7 out of 10[3]
GameSpy 4/5 stars[4] 4/5 stars[5] [6]
IGN 7.0 out of 10[7] 7.3 out of 10[8] 7.3 out of 10[9]
X-Play 3/5 stars[10]
Aggregate scores
GameRankings 76.0% (36 reviews )[11] 77.2% (58 reviews)[12] 73.4% (63 reviews)[13]
Metacritic 74% (31 reviews)[14] 76% (49 reviews)[15] 73% (55 reviews) [16]

Finest Hour has received mixed reviews. IGN states that despite its portraying being a good shooter, it is stuck between realism and over-the-top antics. The graphics have also been criticized for being very ordinary along with the effects being weak.

The sound was said to be out of place at some areas of the game. Compared to the original PC game, Finest Hour is considered to have fallen short of the already high benchmark. Metacritic lists it as having the lowest score of any Call of Duty game released on a nonhandheld console.[17]

References

  1. ^ "GameCube review". GameSpot. http://www.gamespot.com/gamecube/action/callofdutyfinesthour/review.html.  
  2. ^ "PlayStation 2 review". GameSpot. http://www.gamespot.com/ps2/action/callofdutyfinesthour/review.html.  
  3. ^ "Xbox review". GameSpot. http://www.gamespot.com/xbox/action/callofdutyfinesthour/review.html.  
  4. ^ "GameCube review". GameSpy. http://cube.gamespy.com/gamecube/call-of-duty-finest-hour/566904p1.html.  
  5. ^ "PlayStation 2 review". GameSpy. http://ps2.gamespy.com/playstation-2/call-of-duty-finest-hour/566903p1.html.  
  6. ^ "Xbox review". GameSpy. http://xbox.gamespy.com/xbox/call-of-duty-finest-hour/566901p1.html.  
  7. ^ "GameCube review". IGN. http://cube.ign.com/articles/566/566656p1.html.  
  8. ^ "PlayStation 2 review". IGN. http://ps2.ign.com/articles/566/566655p1.html.  
  9. ^ "Xbox review". IGN. http://xbox.ign.com/articles/566/566497p1.html.  
  10. ^ "Xbox review on X-Play". http://www.g4tv.com/xplay/reviews/633/Call_of_Duty.html.  
  11. ^ "Aggregate score for GameCube". Game Rankings. http://www.gamerankings.com/htmlpages2/919262.asp.  
  12. ^ "Aggregate score for PlayStation 2". Game Rankings. http://www.gamerankings.com/htmlpages2/919261.asp.  
  13. ^ "Aggregate score for Xbox". Game Rankings. http://www.gamerankings.com/htmlpages2/917587.asp.  
  14. ^ "Aggregate score for GameCube". Metacritic. http://www.metacritic.com/games/platforms/cube/callofdutyfinesthour.  
  15. ^ "Aggregate score for PlayStation 2". Metacritic. http://www.metacritic.com/games/platforms/ps2/callofdutyfinesthour.  
  16. ^ "Aggregate score for Xbox". Metacritic. http://www.metacritic.com/games/platforms/xbx/callofdutyfinesthour.  
  17. ^ http://www.metacritic.com/games/platforms/xbx/callofdutyfinesthour

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