Verdun Review - World War 1 done right


Platform: PC
Players: 1-4 per squad (Online Multiplayer)
Achievements: Yes
Steam Trading Cards: Yes
Controller Support: Yes
Retail Price: $22.99

High Level Premise – Authentic World War 1 shooter with focus on the battles along the Western Front.  

Graphics/Style – High deference to authenticity from weapons to the era-uniforms.  Quality is fitting to the genre.

Music/Soundtrack – In menus, you get classic music styled after the era.  The sound effects are great for immersion.

Story – You can play as either side of the conflict in recreating battles from World War 1.

Replay-ability – If you embrace the difficulty, you can play as long as the servers are running.  

Value – Well worth the price for the Graphics and quality this game has to offer

Favorite Element –Authentic weapons, equipment, and tactics was the reason I picked up this game.  Their respect for the era is evident and the strength of the game.

With the First Person Shooter (FPS) genre currently engulfed in excesses like jet packs, par kour, and crazy futuristic weapons like Laser rifles I sought solace from this landscape for a simpler time and found the game Verdun.  Verdun is one of the few games to tackle World War 1 which has often been overlooked by the FPS genre because it was a very different type of combat than what we see in the movies and in every other armed conflict since World War 2.  The war was fought with bolt action single shot rifles largely without scopes in dug out trenches where running outside of your cover is sure to get you fitted for a body bag.  The war was also heavy on gas grenades, so you had to be ready to strap on a periphery damaging gasmask at a moment’s notice to keep the poison from your eyes and lungs.  This game has all of that and is a cruel test for those who have been coddled by this generation of FPS games, especially those that allow you to take hits and magically heal back up if you avoid being hit for awhile. In Verdun, one hit is almost always all it takes to take you out of play.  The satisfaction of lining up your iron sights and tacking out an enemy creeping out of their trench is exhilarating, but you also have the pain of poking your head out and getting tagged from an unknown position in the distance so you struggle to really learn any safe way to maneuver to points on the map.  The game also has some other interesting elements like having to remain in proximity to your commanding officer, and if you stray too far you are shot as a deserter. They also had a fun holiday level based on the Christmas Truce where soldiers came out of their trenches to sing carols, play soccer and snowball fight before returning to combat thereafter. If you need a palette cleanser, or if you want a real challenge within this beloved genre Verdun is for you.  I only wish they had developed a single player mode to play around in this world a little more and it would have improved the learning curve for new players. 

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