Generally favorable reviews - based on 49 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 49
  2. Negative: 1 out of 49
Buy On
  1. Nov 27, 2011
    The basic fact is that Red Orchestra 2 spoils you. Playing any other shooter, especially one that claims to be realistic, after going through a few rounds in RO2 is bound to be a disappointment.
  2. Sep 19, 2011
    Tripware brings one of the most cruel battles in human history to our home. A fight on the streets and house by house, recreated by one of the most demanding FPS of the moment. We have never been so close to knowing what those anonymous soldiers felt. Superb game.
  3. Sep 14, 2011
    The kind of shooter that can live only on the PC. It's far deeper than console shooters, and makes no concessions to accessibility to appeal to a casual audience. This is as hardcore as first person shooters get, and if you're prepared to put the time in to learn how to play it well, you'll be rewarded with a level of satisfaction that team deathmatch will never deliver.
  4. Sep 26, 2011
    Red Orchestra 2 delivers one of the best WW2 experience to date. The game has several bugs, but it embraces the entangling realism of a real war.
  5. Pelit (Finland)
    Oct 10, 2011
    After a few hours of adjustment, blam! I suddenly fell in love with RO2, regardless of the bugs and other issues. Its unique, realistic, ruthless portrayal of war is a refreshing antithesis for crowdpleasers like Call of Duty and Battlefield. RO2 will be a long lasting cult game, and personally I can't wait the game is fixed so I can get back to the ruins of Stalingrad! [Oct 2011]
  6. Sep 21, 2011
    Despite the plethora of bugs, Red Orchestra 2 delivers the best WW2 experience to date. Forget about the buggy and useless singleplayer and embrace the entangling realism of a real battlefield, like never before.
  7. Oct 26, 2011
    The game punishes every error, has a steep learning curve and is not made for beginners, but at the same time it's extremly motivating. Once you're into the game, you won't be able to stop playing for hours.
  8. Oct 19, 2011
    A game like Red Orchestra 2 is a rare find in this era, even considering that World War II has been done to death as a game setting. An uncompromising title that does not have any qualms about throwing players to the sharks and saying "deal with it", it's a deeply satisfying multiplayer experience if one can suffer enough to allow it to be.
  9. Sep 28, 2011
    Despite the lack of polishing, a lot of bugs and an awful single player AI, Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad is one of the deeper and most compelling FPS experience we've played since a lot time ago.
  10. Sep 26, 2011
    Going through the Hell of Stalingrad in a shooter? Not everyone's thing. There's a few technical issues and it's hard to get into for newbies despite a singleplayer-campaing. Still, if the topic doesn't bother you, and you want realism rather than bouncing ball PvP opponents, Red Orchestra 2 is a good choice.
  11. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Nov 15, 2011
    This videogame shows World War II as authentically as possible. Hard to learn hard to master – but the reward is the most realistic war atmosphere you can get. [Nov 2011]
  12. PC Games (Russia)
    Oct 28, 2011
    If released 60 years earlier, the game would have definitely goten a Stalin Prize. [Nov. 2011, p.67]
  13. Oct 4, 2011
    It's a well-crafted game that will feel off-putting and foreign at first. But once players give it the time it needs, dive into its systems, and learn them, they will find a game that fills a void that the current trajectory of the FPS genre has left.
  14. PC PowerPlay
    Oct 3, 2011
    A solid alternative to the deluge of twitch-based multiplayer shooters, with great potential to draw in new fans to the realism shooter scene. [Nov 2011, p.42]
  15. Sep 29, 2011
    In Red Orchestra, there are so many variables to take into consideration before pulling the trigger, which makes nabbing a kill against another human player infinitely more rewarding than any other shooter on the market.
  16. Sep 28, 2011
    Tripwire has created a very awesome game. They succeeded in making a realistic, strategic, first-person shooter. It isn't a game designed with a single-player campaign in mind. It isn't for people wanting a twitchy, run-and-gun FPS. It's designed for PC gamers who want a complex shooter.
  17. Sep 23, 2011
    A fine line of a multiplayer shooter appears under a cloud of faults. This game is not afraid of getting out of an arcade stream, and it tortures a player with its realism and team-based gaming approach; it also brings several approaches of online warfare. Yet, the starts are painful, but Stalingrad's atmosphere won't let you leave.
  18. Sep 23, 2011
    With a full retail price and low amount of single player content, you have to really love the multiplayer gunplay in order to love the game.
  19. Sep 21, 2011
    In Red Orchestra 2 carelessness is swiftly punished and careful positioning and teamwork ultimately rewarded. It's a game for the patient, and despite its slower pace, no less exhilarating than any other shooter on the market.
  20. Sep 21, 2011
    RO2 is an acquired taste and brutally punishing to newcomers.
  21. Sep 19, 2011
    Red Orchestra's back with an even more polished gameplay, a new graphical engine, some added mechanics, and, indeed, tanks. The realism of the first one is back yet again, even though some slight modifications may throw off some of the gamers used to the original. But this mix of atmosphere and demanding gameplay, both as an individual FPS gamer and a team player, is what makes RO2 unique. It still lacks a little polish, though, but a patch should take care of this.
  22. Sep 19, 2011
    Hits a sweet spot for me. The gameplay is fast-paced without being too hectic and confusing. The realism is not as arcade-like as Call of Duty, and it's not a hardcore simulation like Arma II. There is even enough variety in the role types that you can have a completely different gameplay experience depending on what you want to do.
  23. Sep 17, 2011
    A mostly triumphant and surprisingly refreshing return to the FPS' favourite setting. Although the single-player is rather lacking, the attention to detail and harrowing atmosphere make for some intense and gripping multiplayer battles.
  24. Nov 9, 2011
    Satisfying, suspenseful multiplayer is more than the sum of its parts, but marred by bugs for now. Ignore the single-player. [Holiday 2011, p.64]
  25. Sep 24, 2011
    Brutally satisfying.
  26. Sep 23, 2011
    Apart from some bugs in the initial release version, a great WW2 tactical shooter with dense atmosphere and realistic weapons such as infantry guns and soviet and german tanks. Up to 64 players fight each other in two teams online and in local networks.
  27. CD-Action
    Nov 9, 2011
    It's a strange blend. On one hand it has a lot of bugs and a very complicated gameplay. The visuals are crude too. On the other hand it offers great atmosphere and attention to details that maniacs will appreciate. [November 2011, p.66]
  28. Oct 28, 2011
    The single-player is a complete write-off, but the multi-player crowd will find a lot to like in Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad.
  29. Oct 21, 2011
    Death comes early and often in this extremely challenging and realistic tactical shooter.
  30. Oct 17, 2011
    Dedication to the ruthless multiplayer portion is what will eventually pay off and set you to one of the finest and most gratifying tactical online shooters.
  31. Sep 21, 2011
    It's mainly a multiplayer game, bravely defending its hardcore nature with many unconventional gameplay choices. For the best part, it's a great experience, one hardcore shooters fans absolutely have to try. It's a shame though that it has been released still so rough around the edges, in deperate need of performance and debug patches. In a few months it could get better, but as of now it goes just for true fans.
  32. Sep 23, 2011
    Red Orchestra 2 is a fickle monster. On the one hand, the innovative gameplay and close attention to realism and detail give this release tons of potential. Unfortunately, the amount of bugs present coupled with the most clueless AI we've seen in awhile takes away a lot from what this game has to offer.
  33. Nov 22, 2011
    The multiplayer of Red Orchestra 2 offers various interesting debate points about the realistic online shooter breed: praised by many, played by few. Forgetting some bugs and the (hopefully) soon to be addressed performance hiccups, Red Orchestra 2 is definitely an entertaining product that, online-wise, will guarantee months of brutal fun.
  34. Oct 17, 2011
    Despite a few old-fashioned quirks, Red Orchestra 2 is fun to play. Clean up the bugs, and it will become a nice middle ground for those who are tired of Battlefield, but couldn't fall in love with ArmA.
  35. Oct 13, 2011
    it's an admirable game that probably deserves an audience of dedicated players.
  36. Oct 4, 2011
    If you strip the game's uninspired visuals and interface and manage to come past its bugs and glitches, Red Orchestra 2 takes no prisoners with its realistic mechanics and physics. It is a game for a hardcore PC audience who thrive on this type of games with its relatively slow-paced tempo yet high intensity.
  37. Oct 3, 2011
    Tripwire, "the modders that became developers", delivers a decent, multiplayer oriented FPS based on the WWII battles between the Nazis and the Russians. And the result is game almost perfectly suited for those who love massive online battles.
  38. Sep 28, 2011
    If Red Orchestra 2 appeals then I daresay you'll have a great deal of fun, but you might want to leave it a month to see if things improve.
  39. Sep 26, 2011
    As hardcore as first person shooters get but fascinatingly distinctive as a result - if you have the resolve to endure its rougher edges.
  40. Sep 21, 2011
    It has flashes of brilliance, but then you get stuck on some cover and get killed because of it, and that moment is shattered.
  41. Sep 15, 2011
    An immensely ambitious game, and in some ways, it's even a groundbreaking one. However, its focus on realism will turn off fans of arcade shooters, and the developers will have to do some patching before everything truly clicks. If you want a hardcore multiplayer FPS that thoroughly immerses you in the Battle of Stalingrad, this could be the game for you-someday.
  42. Oct 4, 2011
    An unfinished game with many bugs casting a shadow on an otherwise good and demanding FPS. Do you remember all the announcements preparing us for a multiplayer campaign and cooperative skirmish? These modes are not finished yet. I'm disappointed that a game not so different from the beta version appeared on the market. Tripwire Interactive has a thing for supporting its games so I'm sure that after several patches and mods Red Orchestra 2 will fly. But for now it's not worth a full price.
  43. Oct 5, 2011
    To release this game in such a poor state is almost offensive. What's there is great when it works, but the bugs should have been fixed by now. To follow the rules of a review, we can only score the game on its current state, which means it falls way down the all-time rankings. The caveat, though, is that if you give Red Orchestra 2 a little more time and you're willing to overlook the faults, it's likely capable of breaking into the top five games of the year so far.
  44. Oct 4, 2011
    A multiplayer centric WW2 shooter that puts great emphasis on realistic mechanics and ambiance. Unfortunately realism does not always translate into fun, resulting in a game with little appeal except to the hardcore fans of the era.
  45. Sep 19, 2011
    Quotation forthcoming.
  46. 50
    If you think both Battlefield and Call of Duty are too exaggerated and unrealistic, and feel Counter-Strike is too soft, Red Orchestra 2 might be the game for you. It doesn't appeal to us, though.
  47. Oct 10, 2011
    Bugs are aplenty. The voice system barely works, crashes happen regularly and pings fluctuate from game to game.
  48. Sep 23, 2011
    While its cover and suppression systems and tanks are outstanding, there are far too many bugs throughout the single and multiplayer game. While broken animation and even the bizarre leveling bugs can be ignored to an extent, the constant framerate and sound dropping - not to mention outright crashes - make RO2 too frustrating at the moment - and sadly it's only going to get worse as more people get fed up and move on to something else.
  49. Sep 22, 2011
    I can appreciate the goals and gumption of the game's small development staff, but the game is just painful to play.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 743 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Sep 13, 2011
    Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad is a refreshing change of pace for the FPS genre. It brings the genre back to it's 2000-2005 roots toRed Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad is a refreshing change of pace for the FPS genre. It brings the genre back to it's 2000-2005 roots to the WW2 era, and merges it with today's technology to provide an authentic, immersive, beautiful experience. This game plays differently than your popular shooters like Call of Duty and Halo, so it's not for everyone. It's definitely catered to a more hardcore audience than most mainstream titles, but still offers game modes for gamers with all tastes. The combat in this game is fast paced, but realistic. There are minimal hud elements, like no crosshairs for instance. Weapon aiming is quite unique, too. Weapons don't shoot in the center of the screen, but rather the weapon moves with the mouse until you get closer to the edge of the screen, when your camera will shift. For anyone who's played the Arma series, the aiming is similar to that. Weapon and bullet physics are also very realistic. Firing SMGs in more than 4-5 round bursts will make it impossible to hit a target further than 40-50 meters away. The game also features a full ballistics simulation. Bullet drop and travel time must be taken into account when shooting.

    The game features HUGE maps with up to 64 players. The vehicles in the game feature full 3d-modeled interiors, where players must realistically navigate the inside of the vehicle to move to each position. No more instantly teleporting from the driver seat to the machine gunner seat, for instance. Vehicles also feature realistic damage models. You can take out a tank's engine by hitting it with an armor piercing round, or even kill the gunner with a well placed shot to the gunner's seat, rendering the tank useless until another player takes over the position.

    The graphics and sound design are all top notch in this game. The performance was a little shaky in the beta, but in just two weeks time they have greatly improved framerates and reduced lag. Red Orchestra 2 is a must have for anyone who is a fan of first person shooters who want a more authentic experience than mainstream shooters will give you. It is a game that game developers should take notes on when designing games in the future. Tripwire Interactive put a lot of hard work with limited resources into this game, and the result is something extraordinary.
    Full Review »
  2. Jun 20, 2012
    Fixed hit detection and renewed playerbase - worth the money now. New maps are needed, but community is making them with SDK and TWI hasFixed hit detection and renewed playerbase - worth the money now. New maps are needed, but community is making them with SDK and TWI has promised new maps and tanks. Lack of content is my only gripe left with the game - and that's after 200 hours of playing. Full Review »
  3. Sep 18, 2011
    The combat is fierce. The avatar weapons are very well done, it feels authentic. Cover and mantling is very good. The maps are detailed, andThe combat is fierce. The avatar weapons are very well done, it feels authentic. Cover and mantling is very good. The maps are detailed, and offer plenty of dramatic play. The fundamental offering of WW2 combat is met, which gives HOW hope for the future.

    Where HOS falls down is in leaving the realism genre for an arcade offering. More accurately, it tries to straddle the fence, and predictably, slips and nuts itself with a leg on either side. In trying to please both, HOS pleases neither the realism crowd, nor the arcade crowd.

    HOS incorporates all of the tired features of the successful shooters: recon planes, mini-maps, radar, automatic reloading, leveling, and skill grinding. By doing this, it is competing against the biggest gimmick shooter companies. It will lose. TWI does not have the resources to compete on the disposable game market. Therefore, the arcade shooters attracted by bells and whistles will move on to the next game, leaving RO standing in its present state before the realism audience. This will be a dire moment.

    An example of one of the gimmicks that are not innovative and that get old quickly is the canned voices. The voices are cute at first, but soon get tedious, as they become the same thing over and over again, or give one away as they are trying to be stealthy. The unintended side effect of canned voices is that players are left unable to communicate effectively about the battlefield. This is an example of a major re playability error. Much more attention should have been given to what players want to say, not what the software is programmed to say.

    The more a game plays itself, the more disposable it is. The more a game needs to be played, the more it will endear itself to the community that made RO successful. Canned voices is one example of the game being taken away from players.

    That the game lacks any real historical context is another glaring fault that will affect it's long term chances. The maps start and stop with no contextual background, no information on the units fighting, where they are, or why they are there. There is simply a side start screen, and the map starts. An arbitrary battle that ends in a tired theme song and another canned voice. Modders and map makers will want to tell the story of their contribution. In its present state, HOS is arbitrary in its context, and repetitive in its presentation and conclusion of the map.

    HOS destroys Fog of War with recon planes and maps showing enemy locations. This type of feature firmly implants HOS in the genre of disposable game. The realism community requires the puzzle of combat, the arcade crowd required targets presented at a fast pace. When the arcade players move on, HOS will stand before the realism faithful as a redundant, self-playing game. There are numerous examples of this effect. HOS should have taken advantage of the void re: realism shooters, and entered the game world defiantly, with a solid, realistic game. Instead of blinking-lights, TWI should have focused on features that would make the game dynamic for years to come: flamethrowers, spreading and persistent fire, in-game hero effects, player placed MG positions (not the forever frozen ones it has now) and any other of a myriad of potential things that the scenario of Stalingrad combat gives. HOS should have stood firm on the requirements of realism shooters. The response to "I don't know where my enemies are" should not be "Here is a radar". It should be "listen to the battle, you will learn".

    It will be very interesting to see where HOS goes from here. The bugs and balance issues will be fixed. What remains to be seen is how the game will rebound from the inevitable disposal it will face, and what the realism faithful will decide to do.
    Full Review »