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Published May 19, 2018

I’ve been introduced to a lot of games over the time that I’ve been gaming and I can say without a doubt that some of those games were the most interesting I’ve ever played, an example of this are military type games such as Black (Ops) for the PS2 and Operation: Flashpoint Dragon Rising for the PS3. Incidentally, both games focus on the military “cleansing” distant lands in the name of the military.


We know which one was better, don’t we folks?!

While both games do play almost the same, there are differences between them. I thought I wouldn’t like Black when I first started playing it for the PS2. I played it and fell in love with it and what’s not to love, enemies running out at you, on sight targets, plenty of things to blow up, tons of weapons and above all non-complicated gameplay which gamers could appreciate.

Playing Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising was far more different than I could have ever anticipated. First, the gameplay is uber complicated, there were times in the game when there was nothing in the distance then there was a man or two shooting at me and I still could not see where the fire was coming from. Here are a few more things about both games and why Black is the better game over Operation Flashpoint.

See, case in point; what are you aiming at?

I. Weapons

In Black, weapons are just laying everywhere. There’s a Shotgun near the exit door in which you use to leave the room you’re in on level one then there’s an Assault Rifle right outside the door when you leave; you will see it when you move slowly out the door. Yeah, you have two weapons at your disposal but you can access those weapons easily; there was never a time when Black made me feel like you couldn’t reach or get to a weapon fast enough before or between battles.

Just in case you need to change weapons

Operation Flashpoint was a different story, you have several weapons at your beckon and call, but accessing them get to be a complication simply because you have to remember what button you have to push and keep held to access your weapons. When I was playing, I was trying to access my grenade launcher and couldn’t; I died more times than I could count while trying to figure that little bit out.

There are lack of weapons lying around on the field; yeah, there are ammo crates but you have to work hard to get to them so you’re ready for your next ambush which was always right around the corner.

II. Visible Targets vs. Invisible Targets

In Black, there are always visible targets. Hell, I like how the enemies don’t waste time shooting at you from a distance and you can clearly see where the fire is coming from for the ones that do; the game never hesitated to show gamers who the enemy was or where they were. I never had to spend more than 45 seconds at the most trying to figure where my enemy was in the game or on a particular part of the battlefield; I always felt comfortable knowing that I didn’t have long to wait for the enemy to show themselves.

See, plain sight

Operation Flashpoint, this aspect was horrible to the T. Enemies were practically invisible and were shooting at you from atop a hill or some invisible vantage point of interest that you couldn’t get to or see off the bat. What made matters far worse was that you always came under fire from enemies who were shooting at you from different angles.

Where is your enemy, I’ve asked myself and my men

Yeah, your men assured you that enemy snipers atop the hill ahead of you were dead, but that doesn’t mean that the ones shooting at you on the beach were; the game did a terrible job warning you of dangers whether they were imminent or not.

III. Objectives

Black (Ops) made your objectives clear and plain as day depending on the difficulty of the game that you chose. You could easily see and memorize the secondary objectives of the game. For example, search for a laptop with explicit and/or incriminating evidence against a person in power and destroy it; this is your Blackmail objective.

Perfect example of an objective in plain sight

Another example is looking for a long, blue rolled up item that contains valuable info pertaining to your next level objective; this is your Reconnaisance Objective. Operation Flashpoint does nothing of this sort, your objectives are laid out in front of you but the problem with that is that you’re being tugged in different directions.

They’re just proving my point of interest

For example, say you have to destroy enemy mortars that lie about 1200 feet to the southwest of your location then another objective points you to enemy snipers at a base 2100 feet north of your locale. You’re stuck trying to figure out which one is more important and the bad part of that is neither one makes a difference as far as importance because you need to do both not to mention that it gets exhausting running from one objective to another given the distance.

IV. Healing

Black (Ops) had medipacks in every area you were in that you can use to heal if and when needed, it came in handy when you were in a shootout with seemingly immeasurable odds; the outside area of the Tivliz Asylum for example. The game never made you worry about whether you could heal your wounds or that of your teammates quick enough for it to make a difference especially since their support fire kept you alive which incidentally wasn’t needed since your weapons were more than enough to get the job done.

See how easy that is, as compared to…

In Operation Flashpoint, this was a completely different situation. One of my men got gunned down, and I had to use the bandages to heal him so he did not die. Ultimately, I didn’t get to him fast enough and that’s what he did, he died. Operation Flashpoint made you solely dependent on your men’s survival which made no sense because they were telling you where the enemy was when you couldn’t see them which most of the time I couldn’t.


Operation Flashpoint would’ve scored major brownie points if the game had medipacks on the field instead of within the gamers’ possession which would’ve made it easier to obtain and use.

V. Conclusion

Black (Ops) is one of the best shooter games for the PS2 and it made gamers come back for more with its great gameplay; the weapons, the enemies, the overall simplicity of the game made it a masterpiece. While Operation Flashpoint needed to improve on so many things, the ammo acquisition, worthless healing factor, screwed up objectives not to mention the invisible targets; these things did not do the game any favors. Black (Ops) PS2 wins out!

The winner and still champ, Black!

I’d love to hear your thoughts about this topic and feel free to leave me a message and I’ll get back to you before the day is out. Thank you and happy gaming.


  1. KennyKenny

    Inrenember being really annoyed by dragon rising. It was very frustrating for the reasons you lay out. And black ops on the other hand was just so beautiful in its simplicity. Sometimes you just don’t want to think too hard do you? Just sit back and enjoy the game. Thanks for the flashback and keep up the great work. Kenny 

    • Rodney McGillRodney McGill

      Thanks Kenny, that’s why I love Black Ops because it is all about laying out a simple framework which is as follows, enemies come out, you gun them down, find the sniper shooting at you then take his life then move on. I love my games but I don’t want to have to overthink when it comes to them.

  2. CravenATATCravenATAT

    I love both of these games, and I must admit I agree with the change in gameplay between both. You state “Operation Flashpoint was a different story, you have several weapons at your beckon and call, but accessing them get to be a complication simply because you have to remember what button you have to push and keep held to access your weapons.” – So true, figuring out the controls and how to change weapons before dieing a bunch sucked! I like the medipacks more-so than bandages for the reason you mention, if you don’t bandage fast enough it is the end! Great review, I am tempted to go play them both to test this review out!

    • Rodney McGillRodney McGill

      By all mean Craven, do so because I feel that gamers should be able to form their own opinion about aspects of a game through the gameplay. I’m going to tell you right now that Black(Ops) PS2 is going to win out because you’re going to get so tired of trying to figure out how far you are from your target vs. enemies coming out to you. Black is so much better than Operation Flashpoint.

  3. DarrenDarren

    well this takes me back! I’ve played both with my kids and I have to agree with you and say black ops is my preferred choice.

    There was always a choice of weapons to hand and for me it was easier to play as the enemies were in front of you.

    Do you think though that flashpoint could be considered more realistic as in real life you aren’t going to see the enemy and you need to identify where the firing position is? 

    Also as there isn’t as many spare weapons lying around d could this also be closer to real life? 

    I guess it’s down to the individual but I prefer black ops 

    • Rodney McGillRodney McGill

      Hey Darren, yes Black Ops is my preferred choice too. Also, yeah I think you’re on to something regarding the real life situation because no one knows where a sniper is unless they’re in tuned with their environment or if they feel something isn’t quite right or if someone is watching them. I think that’s where Flashpoint failed because if that was their angle then there was a lot of pissed off gamers besides me. 

  4. NormanNorman

    Thanks for posting,

    The games I grew up with were way simpler than what is out there today, and I find that by your description of Black Ops , it’s a game I could play…maybe not well, at first, but eventually. A lot of the vital support structures and parameters are in-place in a way that frees you up to play and have fun, which is what I think the main objective of gaming should be. 

    I really enjoyed your post, and have bookmarked your site for future reference – I’ve got 3 kids, all pre-ados, and they do like their gaming!

    • Rodney McGillRodney McGill

      Thanks Norman, my website is chalked full of stuff on there for gamers of their caliber and yes enjoying games is the primary objective of gaming. Also, yes Black Ops is so much simpler and it is so easy to fall in love with its simplicity; you just aim, fire and do a little duck and cover. Easy.

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