Medal of Honor is a risky proposition for the company. Unlike Activision's Modern Warfare series, Danger Close's game is based upon a real-life conflict. With battles ongoing in the Middle East, MOH has rightfully attracted its fair share of controversy -- some are eager to say that the game is simply going too far.
The military advisors EA has hired have the difficult job of "selling authenticity and realism" while making sure "it didn't go too far." Originally titled Medal of Honor: Anaconda, the game's pitch was essentially "Black Hawk Down for Afghanistan." It would be based on a failed operation called Anaconda, where a Navy SEAL was dragged to his death by Al Qaeda fighters. One consultant told the New York TImes that the original concept "hit a little too close to home" and would "put a sour taste in our brothers' mouths."
Medal of Honor has evolved over its development, with a new found focus on "telling the soldier's story." One designer told the NYT that, differing from Infinity Ward's approach to the genre, "we want the player to feel, not like they're in a movie, but like they're in Afghanistan." Funding such an ambitious goal is certainly not cheap, with executive producer Greg Goodrich telling the newspaper that "if the game doesn't sell at least three million copies, I'm not going to be able to do another one."
Certainly, the stakes are high for EA, attempting to capitalize on the success of its competitor's flagship franchise. But will Medal of Honor's approach resonate with gamers? We'll find out in one month's time.